Brittany Nelson’s ongoing project ‘Mordançage’ – experimenting with toxic chemicals, misusing old photographic alternative techniques and her own process called ‘analog Photoshop filter’ to create bizarre and beautiful abstractions with fascinating textures and patterns.
“Every tool is completely rooted in the history of photography, but I’m trying to cause a sort of implosion on the tradition… I’m taking these processes and removed them from the representational imagery to see if they have any integrity on their own as surface…The abstraction is the easiest thing and the hardest thing to create. It is easy to create abstractions but it is very hard to create effective or relevant ones.”
Brittany Nelson – Mordancage
Mordançage is 19th century film negative reversal process known as etch-bleach but when Jean-Pierre Sudre during the 1960s applied the technique to photographic paper instead of film, he coined the new name. Copper chloride, acetic acid and hydrogen peroxide are mixed together in a dangerous solution. Soaked in it, the silver gelatin paper oxidizes, giving it a degraded effect.
Learn more about Brittany Nelson’s working process at her Creative Capital Retreat’s talk .
Wendi Schneider’s series ‘States of Grace’ – impressions with silken luminosity of the serenity and simplicity of a graceful, organic line and the stillness of a suspended moment.
“I capture the ephemeral movement of light on organic forms, to preserve that mystical moment that stills time for me. Photographing intuitively – what I feel, as much as what I see – and informed by a background in painting and art history, I portray a personal interpretation by layering the images digitally with color and texture, to find balance between the real and the imagined… White gold, silver or 24k gold leaf is applied behind the image. The leafing process suffuses the intrinsic value of the treasured subjects with the implied spirituality of the gold. The perception of luminosity varies as the viewer’s position and ambient light change.”
Risaku Suzuki’s series ‘Sakura’ – the ethereal beauty of the Japanese spirit, captured in out of focus blurred close-ups of cherry blossoms, like tenderly floating haiku about white pink clouds of evanescence melting into the blue celestial background of eternity.
“In “Sakura,” the blossoms of the intersecting branches appear melded together as one, making it difficult to distinguish the foreground from the background. My work is about the experience of time and vision. The beauty of the sakura lies in the brevity of their blossoming, so I must rush to photograph their brilliance and vitality… When I stand under a cherry tree and look up at the blossoms, I always feel as if I’m. The blossoms continue beyond my field of vision, each shimmering so beautifully. It is impossible to see them all.”
Christy Lee Rogers’ series ‘A quarter of a million miles’ – submerged in water bodies and fabrics captured in a dance of vivid colours and complexity like Baroque paintings of gods or mythical creatures “to inspire the idea that there are still mysterious, impossibly beautiful things on Earth—not solely in our imaginations.”
“What I want more than ever is to express and inspire hope and freedom, a sense of wonder and tranquility, to create a safe place to dream wildly.”
Christy Lee Rogers – A quarter of a million miles
Shooting in water and at night, the rules of gravity disappear, and the bodies’ distortion, the contrast of colours and the refracting light, deliver also a message of the fragile nature of humanity.
Maimouna Guerresi’s series ‘Giants’ – monumental unreal beings like ancient guardians of hope and secrets to communicate the universal spirituality and infinite divinity. Inspired by mystical Muslim symbols, these enigmatic figures with invisible towering bodies draped in robes and covered with scarfs are like temples of the soul and doors to unknown space.
Maimouna Guerresi – Giants
In the 1980s, Patrizia Guerresi was well known in Italy for the conceptual feminist work. At the age of 40, she converted from Catholic to Sufi Islam, and the new belief profoundly transformed her art and life, mastering her cultural past and present in a mystical new language.
Noémie Goudal’s series ‘Observatoires’ – architectural constructed imagery into an abstract landscape between the earth and the heaven as symbols of humankind’s eternal obsession with time and space or monumental sculptures transporting to a different dimension? By creating a stage where several moments come together, the artist gives to the viewer the possibility to create his own story and compose his own visual impression of a shared reality and an enigmatic world.
Caleb Cain Marcus’s series ‘A Portrait of Ice’ – investigating glacial landscapes in a personal poetic journey in subtle blue, gray and cyan, as a part of our collective memory through million years history of the earth.
“When I am on a glacier there is a moment when the vast beauty enters me. And for that moment, the glacier is capable of shifting human consciousness and altering the reoccurring hum of reality. It is only you and the ice. A shard of something that has accidentally entered into this world. Then the ice screws’ melodic chime brings you out of one trance and into another.”
Caleb Cain Marcus – A Portrait of Ice
These photographs of glaciers of Patagonia, Iceland, Norway, New Zealand and Alaska, with painterly quality and no horizon, shift the perspective in a sense of losing the scale and raise awareness about environmental issues. ”Living in the city it easy to forget about the land; to forget that our history is held within the ice; that our history is melting. The Inuit elders say the melting of the ice is the land crying out in pain. Now we must listen.”
In more than 100 stunning ambrotype portraits of farmers and chefs accompanied by brief honest answers, Francesco Mastalia captured in his project ‘Organic‘ their beautiful, powerful, sensual stories and philosophy.
“Organic is working with nature, not telling it what to do, not demanding of things it can’t do.”
The archaic photographic technique is in refined harmony with the passion of these 21st century women and men who re-embraced the old ways of producing and preparing food. “Organic is the old, ancient, natural way that was predestined from all eternity for us to grow our own food.”
The project ‘Organic’ spotlights New York State’s Hudson Valley but opens a global dialogue about our future in living organically and sustainably in respect to the Earth. “Organic” is not just about growing and producing food, it is about the life of the planet.”
Pilar Pequeño’s series ‘Submerged Plants’ (Plantas Sumergidas) – serene still lifes of underwater flowers, embraced by tiny bubbles, to capture a piece of nebulous consciousness in portraying the architecture of universal beauty, and exploring certain aspects of the diverse manifestations of the natural world.
Pilar Pequeño – Submerged Plants
“I think it’s an inside look, trying to express my feelings with images. I always use natural light and I think that the same subject can have different images depending on the moment of light. What I’m trying to do is to imitate the human eye, with all its nuances that it manages to capture in its vision.”
François Halard’s series ‘Casa Ghirri’ – photographs where the sense of the artist’s presence, the objects that had surrounded him and the place itself are the main protagonists in a play, weaving their roles and create one intimate portrait of the great Italian photographer and the spirit of his house.
The idea for creating such an album was born after an encounter with Luigi Ghirri’s wife, Paula, in 2011. An album not only as separate silent notes about the decoration but as a poetic nostalgic story, told masterfully by François Halard, reflecting with the same palette the life and the energy of the artist.