Thursday, March 26, 2009

Torrie Groening

Torrie Groening was another one of the more interesting artists I had the chance to meet at Photo Alliance in San Francisco. Her giant prints were a lot bigger than she was, and had to be carried in a huge tube. The unfurling of these prints was a two person job. The first image here is a like a "Where's Waldo" of art photography, set up like a puppet show, it is chock full of treasures and clues. I liked the creepy pair of glass eyes that rest on a goblet in the background here. Groening wants us to know a bit out her process, but not as much about her intent. She kept telling me the work was about print-making, or that she used to be a print-maker. I couldn't have cared less about the printmaking, and found the insistence on including so many of her prints within the larger image a kind of strain. To me, the work was about the creative process, vision and perspective, still life traditions, sensuality, and desire. To see more examples, go here:
The second image "Study for Museum of the Senses" reveals a bit about her process. The last image is one of my favorites of Groenings. There is something very sexy and victorian about it.

Titles from top to bottom:
Museum of the Senses for an Artist (touch) 2008 43x56.5"
Study for Museum of the Senses 2007 18x24"
The Good Friend Move 2008 54.25X35"

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Photo Alliance Portfolio Review favorites

Adam Magyar. Adam Magyar. I highly recommend going to his website to see the images at closer to scale.
The images here are details of a much longer images, and you can't come close to getting a sense for them unless you see the full image. This series is called Urban Flow, and the images are made with a customized slit scan camera that shoots in one pixel slits for about three minutes. His camera is stationary, the objects and people are not.
When Adam sat down at my table at the Photo Alliance portfolio review with his unassuming looks and dreadlocks I fully expected to see a story on farmers in Peru or perhaps some elegant desert landscapes. But no. Adam Magyar has knitted an image that invites us to view the space time continuum as we've never seen it before. In these images we see how the fabric of the world might become strings vibrating in different modes, and every mode appears as a different particle: electron, photon, and gluon.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

This egg was my muse on Sunday. I have been working towards a great egg photo, but I don't think I have it yet. The egg seems to work as a symbol of fertility, potential, fragility and strength all at the same time. Besides, it has perfect form. I think the symbolism of the egg is somewhat similar to that of the rice that I've also been shooting.
I'll be back in San Francisco again this weekend reviewing portfolios for PhotoAlliance. I'll be posting about the most interesting photographers I meet this time around.

Monday, March 9, 2009

I got a fair amount of work done in the studio this weekend. Photos to follow shortly. If you happen across a copy of the March/April issue ORION magazine look for my photos alongside an article about climate change called "Artifice v. Pastoral". ORION is a great looking magazine featuring issues related to " Nature/Culture/Place". You can also see my photos on the website:

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Shoot in San Francisco

I went to San Francisco for two nights to produce a photo shoot for Discover, this time at a Climate Change roundtable that was held at the Exploratorium. The shoot by photographer Timothy Archibald went well and the crew was a lot of fun. We had great props, procured by our ace prop stylist Shannon Amos, that included large hunks of real ice, giant fake rocks, powerful fans, and a antique diving helmet.
The ice proved tricky to shoot, even trickier than I thought, and was dangerous to handle and move. Melting everywhere, it slid glacially down the table, from one angle disappearing, and from other angles coming alive with too much detail and reflectivity.
I went running each morning and was really amazed at just how beautiful it was in San Francisco, even in the rain. Maybe because of the rain. I found myself wondering if I wouldn't move back there someday after all. I talked to a group of polar bear swimmers who were taking a leisurely walk down the pier in the gathering storm in their Speedos. They invited me for a swim, and I think next time I'm there I might do it.

This photo by Shannon Amos shows the smaller of the two hunks of ice.