Monday, February 8, 2016

Heather Wetzel

Heather F. Wetzel is an artist working in historic photographic processes, hand papermaking, and book arts. She is currently a Lecturer in the Art Department at The Ohio State University where she was the 2011-2012 Post MFA Fergus Family Fellow in Photography. She earned her Master of Arts & Humanities from Arcadia University in Glenside, Pennsylvania, and her Master of Fine Arts in Visual Studies from the Visual Studies Workshop in Rochester, New York. Prior to coming to The Ohio State University, she completed the University of Iowa Center for the Book Graduate Certificate in Book Arts Technologies in 2011. She is a 2012 Photolucida Critical Mass Finalist, as well as a semifinalist and The Print Center's Honorary Council Award of Excellence winner in The Print Center's 87th International Competition. More recently, she was a Review Santa Fe participant. Her work has been widely exhibited, and can be found at the Anzenberger Gallery in Vienna Austria, as well as in multiple collections.


Artist Statement 

Time moves so fast. It seems there is less and less time for the slower things in life. Time to sit and reflect, time to remember, time to notice the little things. Analog ways are being replaced by faster technology. Photographic prints and books are being replaced by intangible, transient digital files made of zeros and ones - no texture, no smell, no weight. I prefer to work at a slower pace, with materials and process playing important roles in my making. My work is grounded in contemplation of life in the 21st Century, examining current social concerns, using a variety of materials and methods.


The quest for the best form for my ideas to inhabit finds me working in a variety of media, such as historic photographic processes, book structure and content, print, hand paper making, metal, and wood. I am equally concerned with the object and alternative methods of display, and with how my chosen materials support concept and content. I work predominantly with analogue processes, but am also interested in how these methods complement digital technologies, and work to seamlessly integrate digital processes as concepts dictate. My interest in these processes and materials all contribute to my concern in multi-media constructions and art as object.

Impractical Library 

Impractical Library 

Impractical Library 

Webster's New 20th Century 

Webster's New 20th Century 

Impractical Leisure 

Impractical Leisure 

Impractical Leisure 

Impractical Leisure 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Erin Neve

Erin Neve, a native Texan, is a photographic artist currently working in San Antonio. Erin’s work centers on ideas of “the body” – the body as a built object in constant flux and mid-transformation, as a space of interior and exterior boundaries, as fragile, as sacred, as a source of abject experience, and as a site of the sublime. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, most recently in Turku, Finland and Austin, TX. Erin received her MFA in photography from the University of Minnesota in 2012, and an MA in Philosophy in 2006 where she focused her research on aesthetics and photographic theory.

Artist Statement

The photos in these series explore themes of fragility, transformation, and bodily ritual in search of transcendence. This work began in 2012 when I accepted a job at a religious school, and I found myself observing others acting out sincere devotion grounded in specific bodily rituals. I watched as they bowed, chanted, sung, ate wafers, and prayed. They believed that bodies that ritually perform these sacred acts express the divine. Guided by a complex history of liturgical tradition, like a dance, I watched as these devout practitioners performed for God to make visible that which is invisible.

From Bread Towers

In Bread Towers, I build towers of bread as stand-ins for the physical body. The structures are made of individual bread pieces balanced entirely on each other. In my studio, the act of balancing quickly became a meditative ritual that requires focus, patience, and a delicate hand. Most towers fall within seconds; some last minutes so that I am able to photograph the structure before it collapses. I learn each piece of bread, how it is shaped, how it shifts, moves, where the weight falls, its density, its limitations; each piece becomes a part of the whole bread-body. The resulting photographs are minimalist still lives of upward grounded fragile pillars of bodily material.

From Submerge

In Submerge, I use water as transformative material by submerging prints into holy water to transform them into sacred and fragile photographic objects. The photos show scenes of clouded underwater landscapes, fogged and disorienting, with light beams and orbs and fragments of floating natural debris. The photos are transfer printed onto handmade kozo paper, and then submerged in holy water and dried. I must dip the prints slowly, carefully, or they will rip and disintegrate in the water. The results are delicately rippled, fragile, and translucent, giving physical form to their invisible transformation.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Ray Ewing

Ray Ewing is a photographer and artist from the island of Martha's Vineyard. Ray received a BFA in photography from Maine College of Art in Portland in 2012, he is currently completing an MFA in studio art at The University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. Ray has worked as a photojournalist, commercial photographer, educator and an exhibiting artist. As a photojournalist, Ray has received multiple awards for his work with the Martha's Vineyard Gazette. As an artist, Ray has been a part of multiple group exhibitions as well as a solo show entitled Visual Stimulus.

Artist Statement: Realistic Worlds

Realistic Worlds is an exploration of the human need to design our reality to satisfy our desires. I study this general human trait by describing spaces which adhere to a specifically American definition of fantasy as being guided by self-evident power and excess. The structures of the tourism and entertainment industries are houses of worship for the American religion of escapism. We use a thin, glossy veneer of designed reality to engage in obviously absurd, yet culturally accepted sanctuaries of make-believe.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Millee Tibbs

Millee Tibbs’ work derives from her interest in photography’s ubiquity in contemporary culture and the tension between its truth-value and inherent manipulation of reality. Tibbs’ exhibition venues include the Blue Sky Gallery – Oregon Center for the Photographic Arts, Portland, OR; the Museum of Photographic Arts, San Diego, CA; Mary Ryan Gallery, NYC, NY; David Weinberg Photography, Chicago, IL; the DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Licoln, MA; Brown University, Providence, RI; and Notre Dame University, IN. Her work has been published by the Humble Arts Foundation, Blue Sky Gallery, and Afterimage: The Journal of Media Arts and Cultural Criticism. Tibbs’ work is in the permanent collections of the RISD Museum, the Portland Art Museum, and Fidelity Investments, and is also held in the Midwestern Photography Project at the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, and in the Pierogi 2000, Brooklyn flat file. She has been awarded residencies at the MacDowell Colony, VCCA, the Wurlitzer Foundation, Jentel, the Santa Fe Art Institute, and LPEP, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Tibbs grew up in Alabama, completed an MFA at RISD in 2007, and is an assistant professor of photography at Wayne State University.

Artist Statement: Mountains + Valleys 

I am interested in surfaces and their relationship to what lies beneath – the discrepancy between what we see and what we know. I am drawn to photography because of its ubiquitous presence in our culture and its duplicitous existence as both an indexical representation of reality and a subjective construction of it. It is a slippery medium that easily shifts from scientific documentation of a moment in time to a subjective construction of reality. I am interested in the space where these qualities contradict each other and coexist simultaneously.

My current work focuses on the dichotomy between “landscape” (an intangible vista) and “place” (a tactile, inhabitable space). I am interested in the aesthetic framing of the landscape of the American West that perpetuates expansionist ideologies through the representation of unoccupied, and seemingly unoccupiable spaces. By disrupting the photographic image through physical interventions (folding, cutting, and sewing), my work responds to the limitations of the photographic illusion. Each image holds the tension between the expansive, inaccessible vista and the intimate, tactile experience of the photo-object.