Introduction  |  Artist Statement  |  Exhibition Chronology  |  Publications  |  Public & Private Holdings  |  Selected Reviews  |  The Blog  |  copyrights  |  Fishman Editions  |  Contact Page  |  Home Page
 
 

                     
                                                                                                                                                      

First commencement, dry lake beds, Nevada, 2013

Artist Statement
 

When asked what kind of pictures I make, I often reply, "Pictures about nothing." I start by looking where something isn’t…while being mindful of all that could be. Visual images which elicit emotions often do so by reaching inside us to places that are often hard to access, hard to articulate,hard to share, hard to hold, and, most significantly, hard to withhold. Expressive photography is language; it’s the language that commences when words constructed from phonics do not adequately express a concept. In my cortex model of photography as language, light becomes the noun, texture the adjective, and verbs remain still. In published reviews, my images have been called "quiet," "sparse," "reductionist," "layered," "symmetrical," and "organic,"a fairly descriptive assortment of adjectives assembled to articulate what is a disparate body of work constructed over the last 40 years. The kind of images I had been making was soon to encounter an unanticipated variation to its theme. On 08.29.05, the name Katrina would be forever etched into the collective consciousness of a nation. I arrived Mississippi as a Red Cross Volunteer 36 hours after Katrina made landfall. My predisposition for images that do not rely on prior or subsequent exposure would be challenged by the reality that there would be no escaping the perfect storm. Nor, did there seem to be any escape of crafting a visual language where the story could not be dismissed or disposed of unless one was complicit in the under-reporting of what would become the greatest act of non-disclosure by a national media. I was in Mississippi without obligation or influence of state or federal government nor national or local media. The State of Mississippi fell victim to a vicious, reckless, liquid Godzilla with total disregard for anything in her path, whose devastating consumption of property that ominous early Thursday morning in late September had never before been matched. The illuminated red laser dot marking the storm's target was positioned upon the heart of Mississippi’s coastal hub of Gulfport. Its reach would be seen as far inland as Hattiesburg, Jackson, and the Delta. Upon its departure, Hurricane Katrina would become the most notorious natural disaster to ever strike the United States, and the most egregious act of non disclosure by a national or international news  community.  

My personal journey is a search for the quiet place where light reveals rather than obscures, visual chaos is silenced, and the moment is defined and preserved by nothing more than the smooth, quiet click of my Leica’s shutter. The pure joy inherent in revisiting my moment contains a satisfaction that will never change, regardless of how rapidly the technology does. What remains constant, is the confirmation of voice in expressive image making. My criterion is and continues to be whether or not the print executed is better then my mind's eye recall of its reality. This still remains the benchmark I use for analysis and evaluation. It has become impossible for me to segregate vocation from avocation; they are one and the same. I cannot imagine doing anything else. When the light is perfect or the picture has just a moment of life, I seek the nearest camera, often with little to no regard for it's analog or digital orientation. In part, this indiscriminate use has led to the construction of a hybrid image which, well-crafted, contains an inherent beauty not otherwise revealed. Often beginning as a negative and executed to print using current digital tools. A myriad of media, inks, hardware and software options, results in a cross-pollinated, fade-resistant and stabile print. The commingling of analog and digital techniques yields a print where theory and practice find a harmonious co-existence.  Other then driving a car, no egalitarian pursuit has ever rivaled that of today's fascination with photography. A pursuit where a collective ideology shares in a similar satisfaction and joy when discovering they are responsible in making an expressive photograph, even if it is the result of an accident good fortune, or good training. The works of those who have elevated voyeurism to craft, speak as the diction of a trained actor on Broadway, the voice of Andrea Bocelli, or the laughter elicited by the brilliance of the late George Carlin. Photography, indeed, has acquired its voice….and a rather eclectic one. What photography does best is speak at a volume and clarity that is best consumed on a canvas of silence…


keith fishman
 
When asked what kind of pictures I make, I often reply, "Pictures about nothing." I start by looking where something isn’t…while being mindful of all that could be. Visual images which elicit emotions often do so by reaching inside us to places that are often hard to access, hard to articulate,hard to share, hard to hold, and, most significantly, hard to withhold. Expressive photography is language; it’s the language that commences when words constructed from phonics do not adequately express a concept. In my cortex model of photography as language, light becomes the noun, texture the adjective, and verbs remain still. In published reviews, my images have been called "quiet," "sparse," "reductionist," "layered," "symmetrical," and "organic,"a fairly descriptive assortment of adjectives assembled to articulate what is a disparate body of work constructed over the last 40 years. The kind of images I had been making was soon to encounter an unanticipated variation to its theme. On 08.29.05, the name Katrina would be forever etched into the collective consciousness of a nation. I arrived Mississippi as a Red Cross Volunteer 36 hours after Katrina made landfall. My predisposition for images that do not rely on prior or subsequent exposure would be challenged by the reality that there would be no escaping the perfect storm. Nor, did there seem to be any escape of crafting a visual language where the story could not be dismissed or disposed of unless one was complicit in the under-reporting of what would become the greatest act of non-disclosure by a national media. I was in Mississippi without obligation or influence of state or federal government nor national or local media. The State of Mississippi fell victim to a vicious, reckless, liquid Godzilla with total disregard for anything in her path, whose devastating consumption of property that ominous early Thursday morning in late September had never before been matched. The illuminated red laser dot marking the storm's target was positioned upon the heart of Mississippi’s coastal hub of Gulfport. Its reach would be seen as far inland as Hattiesburg, Jackson, and the Delta. Upon its departure, Hurricane Katrina would become the most notorious natural disaster to ever strike the United States, and the most egregious act of non disclosure by a national or international news community.

My personal journey is a search for the quiet place where light reveals rather than obscures, visual chaos is silenced, and the moment is defined and preserved by nothing more than the smooth, quiet click of my Leica’s shutter. The pure joy inherent in revisiting my moment contains a satisfaction that will never change, regardless of how rapidly the technology does. What remains constant, is the confirmation of voice in expressive image making. My criterion is and continues to be whether or not the print executed is better then my mind's eye recall of its reality. This still remains the benchmark I use for analysis and evaluation. It has become impossible for me to segregate vocation from avocation; they are one and the same. I cannot imagine doing anything else. When the light is perfect or the picture has just a moment of life, I seek the nearest camera, often with little to no regard for it's analog or digital orientation. In part, this indiscriminate use has led to the construction of a hybrid image which, well-crafted, contains an inherent beauty not otherwise revealed. Often beginning as a negative and executed to print using current digital tools. A myriad of media, inks, hardware and software options, results in a cross-pollinated, fade-resistant and stabile print. The commingling of analog and digital techniques yields a print where theory and practice find a harmonious co-existence. Other then driving a car, no egalitarian pursuit has ever rivaled that of today's fascination with photography. A pursuit where a collective ideology shares in a similar satisfaction and joy when discovering they are responsible in making an expressive photograph, even if it is the result of an accident good fortune, or good training. The works of those who have elevated voyeurism to craft, speak as the diction of a trained actor on Broadway, the voice of Andrea Bocelli, or the laughter elicited by the brilliance of the late George Carlin. Photography, indeed, has acquired its voice….and a rather eclectic one. What photography does best is speak at a volume and clarity that is best consumed on a canvas of silence…
 
 
 
© 2017 keith fishman. All Rights Reserved. Powered by VisualServer™