By now, most of you know I recently exhibited my latest body of work Luminiferous: Adventures in Metal at the Wilson Hall Gallery on the University of Alabama in Huntsville campus this past March.
As a visiting artist I also taught a digital image transfer workshop with the students in Jose Bentancourts‘ Experimental Photography Class. I introduced the class to alcohol gel transfers and DASS supersauce transfers to wood, metal foils and glass.
I like to encourage students to bring in substrates of their choice for transfers images onto as shown in the above photograph.
You know you’re doing something right when you can generate excitement in sharing your process! And it was such a pleasure to get students excited about image transfer. A lot of great results came from the workshop as you can see below.
In addition to exhibiting and teaching, I was also lecturing…three lectures to be exact.
One lecture was to Jose Betancourts‘ Documentary Photography class. This talk was very detailed specific and entirely about my involvement with the Haitian Art Company and the multiple trips (one of which was 2 months!!) I made to Haiti during my 7 years of service to the gallery in Key West. As one would expect, this experience had an enormous influence on my life as artist and creative professional.
The business gave me unique access to Haitian artists and allowed me to experience the culture in a way that is unavailable to the average person. The photographs I have taken in Haiti reflect a bond I have with my subjects and contain emotional power attained only through the crossing of cultural boundaries. Obviously I highlighted my images of Haiti, developed in the style of 19th century photographs and talked extensively about my travels with artist Franz Zephirin who was determined to show me ‘the real Haiti’. We traveled to Cap Haitien and specifically to his grandmother’s voodoo compound where I was graciously given permission to record the events of a seasonal voodoo ritual. Ceremony of the Serviteur was shown in it’s entirety during this talk.
I also spoke to Kathryn Jill Johnson’s Professional Practices class, where I talked about my journey as an artist and creative professional. In addition to showing a variety of my work and talking about my time at the Haitian Art Company, I also highlighted my experiences and travels while directing Archeo Gallery. Archeo was an invaluable experience in carefully curating and beautifully displaying museum quality art and artifacts. I traveled to places as distinct as the Zagros Mountains of Iran to the riversides of Mali in the search of hand knotted rugs, African art and antique furniture. Below are some pics from my days at Archeo!
This talk ended with my decisions to leave Key West and return to Louisville, in pursuit of a life more affordable and less career focused with time to fully pursue my creative passions. Creating art is now at the forefront of my life and I have made a lot of work since that move. These life decisions were validated upon receiving an Al Smith Fellowship from the Kentucky Arts Council in 2014. Since that time, I’ve also started teaching photography, with plans to further pursue this element of my story!
Last but not least, I talked at my opening reception where I spoke of both process and intent while introducing Luminiferous: Adventures in Metal to students, faculty and staff of UAH.
My time at the University of Alabama in Huntsville was inspiring, productive and way too short!! Reflecting on my past and how it has influenced and shaped my present was pleasure. I have accomplished a lot while choosing the unique, complex and unconventional path of an artist. Thank you UAH for reminding me of the positive effects in my life decisions!!
I must admit that pouring over my past, in addition to my recent stay in Key West, instilled a sense of nostalgia that has been hard to shake since my return to Kentucky. With that said, it’s only appropriate to end this post with a photograph taken during one of my adventures in Haiti.
Long post…if you read it, I hope you enjoyed it!