Inspired by the symbolic meaning of trees in cultures around the world, Joyce Tenneson explores in her series ‘Trees and the Alchemy of Light’ their mysterious spiritual and complex life, with a hope to see them in a new meaningful way.
“The ‘tree of life’ metaphor expresses the mystical concept that all forms of life are interconnected. When we stand with the trees, we feel we are part of them, and they are part of us. They give us a sense of belonging to the greater universe. ‘Knocking on wood’ for good luck is a practice originating from primitive tree worship, as humans sought to call forth the protective spirits they believed resided in trees. Their ability to send roots down through the ground and branches up to the sky, has given trees deep sacred meaning throughout the ages.”
Joyce Tenneson – Trees and the Alchemy of Light
Seeking how to express the spiritual element, the artist developed a new technique combining the craft of gold leafing with photography and this mixed media imbue the trees with divine light.
Inspired by a book of poems by Japanese women from the 7th through the 20th centuries the artist occasionally found in a used bookstore, she immediately felt that wanted to make their photographic equivalents. Not just to illustrate them, but to express her own interpretation of each poem.
Brigitte Carnochan – Floating World
“Floating World refers to the conception of a world as evanescent, impermanent, of fleeting beauty and divorced from the responsibilities of the mundane, everyday world. For the poets in this volume that world centered on love—longing for love and the beloved, mourning lost love, pondering its mystery. The beauty of the natural world—its flowers, landscape, the moon, and the changing seasons—serves as the primary metaphor.”
How can I blame the cherry blossoms
for rejecting this floating world
and drifting away
as the wind calls them.
Watch this short video to learn more about the artist’s works.
“I believe that in nature, the smallest things, or seemingly most insignificant phenomena, have their reason and their role”.
Koichiro Kurita’s tranquil images are like wordless poems where the meditative dialogue between the artist and the serene nature’s beauty evokes feelings of both intimacy and universality.
Koichiro Kurita – Terra, / Hydra / Atoms
“I had a fateful encounter with a book when I was a commercial photographer. It was Thoreau’s Walden. I was moved by the absolute freedom of the spirit unconstrained by society’s rules and the ability to enjoy harmony with nature. It was reminiscent of Zhangzi’s philosophy and so close to the Oriental way of understanding nature. Deeply moved and inspired, I quit commercial photography and retreated to the mountains to start nature photography. The world of nature embraces terrasphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere. Each surface has a connecting border in mysterious ways. And in those expanses, all the things and phenomena including living things exist in time as independent entities. Though each entity is independent, they never exist alone nor in conflict yet rather in a state of order and harmony. Each connection contributes to a harmony of nature as a whole. My work is the expression of the mysterious connection of these spheres and a record of the connection between myself and nature”
WOW! While this might be the first thought of a viewer, actually this is also the abbreviation of the majestic hypercollages of Canadian born and Texas based photographer Ysabel LeMay. It stands for ‘Wonderful Other Worlds’. She creates lavish panoramas of natural splendor through the process of composing a constellation of individual photographs and then digitally woven them together in Photoshop. The created patchwork transforms the static fragments into vibrantly flowing images where the viewer has the impression that finally has found paradise.
Cy Twombly’s ethereal Polaroid photographs are visual lyrical poems revealing moments of transition when the world becomes alive. They are romantic meditations “built up from something within rather than extracted from something without” (William Katz).
The series Tulips II was captured in 1985 in Italy in a set of six close-ups. The tulips are composed from various angles, isolated in a painterly way but all embraced by light and in soft focus to feel the subtle vibrations of energy and evanescent emotions.
Cy Twombly – Tulips II
For a quick inspirational tour, see this short video about ‘CY TWOMBLY: Photographs’ exhibition held April 27–June 9, 2012 by Gagosian Gallery Beverly Hills
Capturing the ‘drawings’ of nature and connecting them lyrically with her own fine, ethereal drawings on translucent vellum, Sandi Haber Fifield in her series of multiple images ‘Lineations’ tells stories of the tenuous beauty and fragility of the natural world, and yet filled with imagination, longing and hope.
Sandi Haber Fifield – Lineations
“My work is born of collisions and alignments. I gather images from experiences exceptional and mundane, intentional and spontaneous… Through the process of combining disparate moments of vision, formal connections reveal themselves and suggest the reassuring possibility of meaning and order in the apparent randomness of experience.”
Gohar Dashti’s small instant film pieces from her series ‘Alien‘ – “the world is an alien landscape in which we are at home, or a home in which we find ourselves alien.” (by Eva H.D.)
Gohar Dashti – Alien
” I cannot say if the wall – that external wall, about which the apocalyptics like to talk – will ever overcome people. The wall, which I am thinking of, is actually a mental state, which suddenly becomes visible to the outside. Does not everyone carry a wall, consisting of prejudice, before themselves? A terrible catastrophe will descend upon progress striven humanity, which only the plants, a few animals, and the woman, who has cloistered herself from the external world, will survive. ”
George Selley‘s series ‘Vault7‘ – a concept of exploring a city photographically through a top secret CIA document
“On Tuesday 07 March 2017 Wikileaks released ‘Vault 7’, the largest ever publication of confidential documents about the CIA. This project specifically follows a “familiarisation” document that instructs covert agents arriving in Frankfurt.
I decided to travel to Frankfurt and follow the guidelines, as if I was a covert agent myself. Through my photographs, I aim not only to present and play on this banal absurdity, but also to challenge our conceptions of how such an organisation is run and to question its integrity.”