Carnegie Center for Creativity
200 Mathews, Fort Collins, CO
Wednesday-Saturday: 12:00-6:00pm; Free Admission
- Exhibition Dates: August 7 – September 7, 2019
- Public + Artists’ Reception: August 17, 2019
Black and White 2019
The image submissions for Black & White 2019 demonstrate expressions of the human condition, being human and consequences of human activity. On the surface, the images might be seen as a diverse and unrelated selection of 40 photographs. Despite a broad diversity of technique and approach, each artist validates that there is no one way for photography to expose the world. With each cycle though the images, an increasingly close examination of the photographs reveals mysterious underlying connections. The touchstone becomes whether the image will help us see the world differently; and, importantly, challenge what we think and how we emotionally connect. Each of these images is a powerful step in creating an interesting dialogue about who we are.
A black and white image is a unique tool to turn a photograph into an object of art for conversation. Within each photograph the gradations of black, grey and white stir sensations and hold our attention through the unique visual translation of a world of color. That intensity becomes a visual voice. A photograph, as a reflection of the subject before the lens, unconsciously or consciously, is an inner expression of the photographer’s own being and life experience. The images here, through the eyes of these photographers, speak to us as people with emotion and connection. Viewers will be well rewarded to study each image and how that image connects into and with the other selected images.
The selected photographs defy classification in any one genre that would neatly explain how we should approach the image. There is street photography, vernacular, conceptual, portraiture, still life, landscape, photo collage, performance, documentary and constructed images. These images are not “straight” photographs. These images are not single statement images. We cannot just check-the-box to see these as a “proper” portrait or landscape. It is not that we see, identify, categorize, recognize; or, in the sense of: “I see it, I get it, I know what it is, let’s now move on…” . An image with voice spreads across many “characterizations”. An image such as these cannot be harnessed in one place. A photo of “Sand Dunes” relates to an image of a “Red Pepper”, whose sensuous curves and lines relates back to images of a less obvious rock landscape taken in “Clear Creek Golden, Colorado. The image of “Alice No.2” has a human quality and personality that comes through as much as “Mary, Irish Travelers” or “Hold-Up in the Hood 2”. While “”Childhood” or “The First Wildflowers” might appear to be vernacular, there is a wonderful balance in their composition. It triggers in our mind memory (hopefully) of a similar time, that makes us feel young again. Yet, these contrast sharply with the burned out landscape in “Apocaliptico”. Each image resets whether that experience, captured in that moment, was part of our becoming or factor of our condition.
Our common life experience is demonstrated as well in the images that are posed or constructed. Those images are premeditated. The artist takes the time to stage or build what we see. “In Search of Forgiveness” becomes a powerful image with multiple hands grasping at liquid that may symbolize time and our inability to stop and grasp its passage. “Untitled From Trauma Series”, a woman hugging a stuffed animal in “Maya on the Bed’ , the diptych of “The Suspicion and The Lies”, plastic figures posed in “Please Don’t go” and a dramatically posed nude in “Mask with Eye” speak to inner emotion, and human impact on ourselves and our environment. We see everyday challenges to society in “Unbroken”, “Sharecropper Family”, “Pigeon Tender” or “Alone 1” and others. Each of these black and white photographs has the potential to open the viewers eyes, if the viewer’s eyes and mind are open.
There is a special beauty in a still life image that simply invites us to appreciate the world around us, despite the constant barrage from daily and nightly news. One can just enjoy the simplicity of “Onion”, “WinterKill”, “Out of Place”, or the alternative process used to create “Sheepshead”. Alternatively there is a quiet drama in “Spine De/ReConstruction”, “Grana:5400” and “Ancient Bristlecone Pine”.
An additional joy is experienced in seeing the actual image on the wall as an object of art. We don’t know if the artist view himself as a photographer, or as an artist using photography as a tool, like a paint brush, to create photography-based art. The image, whether film or digital, is only one part of what the visual image communicates. We might say: “the image is everything”. Indeed, it is. However, the path to creating the physical image will change what the camera captured, if even a camera was used. There are different ways of printing, framing, mounting and exhibiting these created works that cannot be communicated, felt or appreciated on our ubiquitous computer or iPhone screens. Appreciating what the artist captured in the photograph they visualized and shared is just one part. The other is the material realization of the vision. It is the subsequent processing of the image that can add an additional visual impact. The presentation of that created/printed or projected image is yet another factor changing our approach to the image.
The strength in these images does not stop at all with what we see on-line in any one image. In the exhibition, how the images position with each other, even though each may be a different artist, will affect what we may think and how we might react. These 40 images speak loudly, individually, and create a visual chorus when seen together. The successful composition and use of light of these black and white images invites us to spend time enjoying each image. We deprive ourselves of the fullest appreciation of these photography-based objects of art without including the actual exhibition experience.
Geoffrey Koslov, Co-Founder, Foto Relevance Gallery, located in the historic Audubon Place District of Montrose in Houston, Texas.
ARTIST HONORS AND AWARDS
All selected artists’ work is exhibited in our Exhibition Space and in the Online Exhibition complete with artist website links. C4FAP also provides professional installation images, event Press Release and social media promotions with an audience of 180,000+ followers internationally. All artists and friends are welcome to celebrate the exhibition with us at the Reception.
- JUROR’S AWARD: Rebecca Zeiss
- DIRECTOR’S AWARD: Kevin Horan
- Hahnemühle PAPER AWARD : S. Gayle Stevens
- HONORABLE MENTIONS: Julie Jacobs, Melissa Lazuka, Bob Marckese, Manuela Thames, Wayne Swanson, S. Gayle Stevens, Rebecca Zeiss
- TRAVEL SCHOLARSHIP: Manuela Thames