Juror Statement:

The ubiquitous world of digital photography might be accessible on a global scale, even a substantial impetus to an increased incidence of picture-taking. It is quick, convenient and offers wonderful results. Everywhere one looks, there are cell phones poised to capture selfies and beyond. People spend thousands and thousands of dollars on new digital cameras every year. I confess that I’ve been known to be among such photographers. But for some of us, the convenience of such photographic efficiencies is somehow lacking. There is an indescribable joy in watching an image drift to the surface of a piece of paper floating in a darkroom tray, including the time and patience required to bring about the creative culmination. These processes require more than the push of a button. Yours is a tactile labor of love.

My heart and soul lie within the creative cult of Alternative Photo Technique image makers and thus, I feel a kinship and gratefulness toward each one of you who have chosen this less populated, less expedient world. In fact, I am profoundly appreciative to know that there has been a resurgence of photographers who skip the quick fix photos and dwell within the fix found in the darkroom. And, as well, kudos to those of you who blend computer technologies with the alternative processes. As I meandered through the many images submitted for this exhibition, I found new inspirations with each entry. Surely my own father, grandfather and paternal ancestors were gazing upon your images along with me, themselves having been in the photography business in one form or another since 1875. Keep going, all of you.

JILL ENFIELD


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Director’s Statement:

Each year this exhibition becomes more magical. Our love for early processes and those that blend contemporary and historic practice grows exponentially. Our great thanks goes to Jill Enfield for her studious work in selecting these artworks. It is not an easy accomplishment.

This year we have seen a few Alternative Processes that remind us of why we are so delighted when we first see them. Not only are they beautiful in their use of process but also the deeper exploration of intent was wonderful to encounter.

Rheana Gardener examines the relationship of plants to people and how we deal with the pandemic. Through using appropriated images from the pandemic she creates Chlorophyll prints on leaves, one of the oldest techniques for image making. She explores the ‘ancient connection between people and plants’, how they give us comfort and oxygen…things deprived by this pandemic.

Likewise, Mitch Eckert’s gold toned Salted paper images are inspired by Dutch painters of still life and memento mori. These are rich images but then one looks closer and sees that they are constructed of carboard, Styrofoam and fake fruits! Though humorous, these also remind us that is is no natural decay here to speak of and many of these deceptive materials will outlive the human species.

Kris Sanford’s latest work in Cyanotype uses appropriated imagery from old psychiatry texts to ask the question What is the Normal Mind? In the past, differing from the norm in mental health, objectivity and sexuality were all questioned and were deviations to be fixed. These photomontages explore those early fallacious interpretations.

This is not to take away from those wonderful accepted works shown here that were made for the satisfaction of creating a beautiful object, using an antique process and finding satisfaction in doing so. Albumen prints, platinum’s, tintypes, ambrotypes, gum prints…the list is long in this show, and they are all superb. Be sure to read the statements provided by our artists and enjoy this cornucopia for the eyes.

Donna Cosentino
Juror's Choice - Wilson: "Pyramid Ghost"Director's Choice - Eckert: "Still Life with Cherries Suspended"SPECIAL MENTION - Gardner: "Bring Out the Coffins"SPECIAL MENTION -  Gardner: "In The World’s Broad Field of Battle"Barry: "Face With Tag"Billin-Frye: "Chestertown"Buchanan: "Barriers to Entry, Hurricane Zeta Damage, South Mountains"Clark: "Nostalgia"Conn: "Free Thought"Danna: "Cuetzalan #1 "Danna: "Robin"Eckert: "Still Life with Cherries, Berries & a Peach"Ellenwood: "Fading Reefs 2"Evanoff: "Black Eye Susan"Evanoff: "Sparkle"Gibson: “Dr. Allison Jack and Family”Gootee: "Broken"Howard: "Bhutan Mist"Howard: "Elephant"Lemoux: "Pose Study"