All the work in the
Art Portfolios 'Coast and Desert' 1-4, 'Assignments', and what
is clearly labeled 'Darkroom' was done in a very simple, traditional
darkroom - One enlarger, four trays, and a collection of hand tools
made from things you can buy at any art supply, or hardware store.
Though I work digitally in a variety of ways, nothing in these sections
has been made by a computer, except the scan itself, of course.
I print 2-4 'original' copies of an image, black and white silver gelatin prints.
For many years (1992-2000), Art portfolio
prints were made from 4x5 copy negatives of the 'master/originals'.
Times change, I no longer shoot 4x5 copy negs of my prints - I scan them, and any prints will be digital.
I've been doing this work since the early '80's, and I've tried to write
quite a few artists' statements about the art portfolio work, that say anything more than what I wrote a long time ago.
I trashed them all.
more time goes by, the less aedequate words seem to be, and the less
interested I am in trying to talk about the pictures at all. The image either 'says something to you'... or it doesn't.
And I certainly don't have a better statement than I wrote years ago, below.
I think it was
Robert Rauschenberg (correct me, someone/anyone, if my attribution
is wrong) who said it best - "It starts by YOU telling the picture
what it will be -- in the end, THE PICTURE tells you what IT will
I feel like I take that approach..... Not through any 'great design',
or dogmatic adherence, ... it's just the way that 'comes naturally'....
and that is all I am interested in.
I collect negatives by taking myself, and simple camera, to places
I love - the California coast, and desert - and start walking,
.. "things happen".
I spend a lot of time with my proof sheets, and in a small room, under
a dim red bulb. I'm obviously interested in things metaphysical -
beyond that, it's up to the viewer to decide what's going on. ( If
I haven't figured them out yet, (and I haven't, not really), why
should I presume to explain them to anyone else?) Many of the pictures
just seem to 'happen', because the individual negatives are 'looking'
for each other. I'm just a chaperone, and a really loose one at that......
(...But those were always the best kind of parties, right? )
P.S. - July 2010 - "I'm just a chaperone, and a really loose one at that..." - After all these years, this rings truer than ever.
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