Afternoon, Spider Rock © Robert Sommers 2023

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Pushing the Boundaries

© Robert Sommers
I am exhibiting some of my photography at the Brandon Gallery next month with 5 or 6 other photographers. The show is called Pushing the Boundaries. Don't know if there will be an opening or not.  All of the photographers are encouraged to really let it go.

 I am going to be displaying some of the work I have been experimenting with lately, some photos that I have been painting on top of, sort of non objective work, along with a few photos that I have created and posted for this blog. The kind of photos that leave real serious photographers spitting and pulling out their hair. They're just pixels, baby.

If you worship at the altar of Stieglitz and Weston, the idea of photoshop manipulation is profane and untoward.  So I submit my work with a touch of shame and unease to the guys who have played it straight. I want to see how fuzzy the line can be blurred between painting and photography.

This thing has been thrown together fast. Haven't had the paints out in years. Should be an interesting show.

Here's my mission statement for the show:

Photographers tend to be a fairly doctrinaire group. I like to use the camera as another tool in creating art, but not necessarily worship at the shrine of the masters.

For me it is interesting to blur the line between painting and photography.   I am trying to use the photographic pixels in a nonromantic way, and to manipulate the image like one might sling paint. 
These images have been sliced, diced, wrung out, stretched, folded, pressed, painted and degraded. Approach them with caution.


Anonymous said...

If you want to read an interesting book, get your hands on Fred Ritchin's After Photography.

He explores the radical impact digital photography has had on the general field of photography. One of the things it is doing is making "serious photographers" irrelevant. The boundaries of photography vanished ten of fifteen years ago, but there is aren't too many who have figured this out.

If you want to see some good work by someone who has grasped the implications, check out this site.


Livick was the most fearless gum printer around for thirty years or so. Now he is doing massive pieces on huge digital paper. This guy knows what's happening. BTW, check the archives for some radical gum prints.


Blue Heron said...

Got a funny letter from a photographer friend who takes issue with my statement and approach and has never believed me capable of producing anything worth a shit.

People have been painting, manipulating, tweaking photos a lot longer than I have and I need to have a little more respect.

Not that I feel real confident anyway about this show. Wish I had more time to produce and edit. Screw it - let's roll.