Featuring the Photographs of Vincent Bilotta, Dan Burkholder, Fawn Potash

Dates: Through September 28, 2014
Location: Kaaterskill Fine Arts Gallery, Hunter Village Square, 7950 Main Street, Village of Hunter
Gallery Hours: Friday-Saturday 10 am-5 pm; Sunday 10 am-3:30 pm
More Information: 518 263 2060

Images, left to right: "Spiral Clouds," by Vincent Bilotta; "Bodies of Water," by Fawn Potash; "Passing Sheep in Tuscany," by Dan Burkholder

Light Sensitive: The Personal Visions of Three Catskills Photographers

Living and working year-round in the northern Catskills, one becomes well-acquainted with the photography of nature:  sweeping vistas, scenic waterfalls and rustic barns. This is the photography of Romanticism.

“Light Sensitive,” a new photography exhibit at the Kaaterskill Fine Arts and Crafts Gallery in Hunter, NY, which opens on August 16, seeks to move beyond the romance of the landscape to a more direct statement of the artist’s vision.

“I admire artists who are taking back Fine Art from control by the curatorial class. Better we find a new way to share our visions,” says Palenville photographer Vincent Bilotta, one of the participating artists who sees the work of Darwin and other modern scientists as critical to his world-view and hopes to translate it into elements of his current art project, a “Catskills Chapel” devoted to the “great [scientific] discoveries of the last 500 years.”

“I am experimenting with materials like Duratrans in large window prints to find appropriate presentation for a chapel in the Catskills that incorporates the great discoveries of the last 500 years in humanistic thought, scientific understanding of the universe and its fundamental structure. I see Charles Darwin as the prophet, who frees us from the tribal deities of revealed religion and gives us a natural religion where we take comfort in knowing we share life and genetic material with all living things,” says Bilotta, whose huge photographic prints will be mounted on three of the gallery’s four large front windows.

Meanwhile, Bilotta has his artistic sites set on a much larger project, creating a “chapel in the Catskills” that pays homage to half-a-millennia of humanistic thought, for which he is currently seeking funding and underwriting.

Dan Burkholder is one of the first photographic artists to embrace digital technology in the early 1990’s. Melding his unique vision with mastery of both the wet and digital darkrooms, his platinum/palladium and pigmented ink prints are included in museum and private collections internationally.

Pioneering the digital negative process in 1992, Burkholder was the first photographer to use the computer to create negatives that could be printed in the classic darkroom, thereby creating a bridge between the developing technologies and the fine art world. His process helped open doors for all photographers interested in moving into the new electronic technologies. Dan’s landmark book, Making Digital Negatives for Contact Printing, has become a standard reference in the digital fine art photography field.

Dan’s book, The Color of Loss; An Intimate Portrait of New Orleans after Katrina, (2008, University of Texas Press) presents a stunningly hyper-realistic study of the destruction suffered by the city and its residents. His newest book, iPhone Artistry (Pixiq Press, 2012) is the essential how-to guide for photographers who want to make fine art photographs with their iPhones.

Dan earned his B.A. and Masters degrees from Brooks institute of Photography. Dan lives in Palenville, New York, with his wife Jill Skupin Burkholder and their three cats and one dog.

Of his photography, Burkholder says, “As a landscapist, I’m constantly looking for new approaches, subject matter and chemical or digital technologies that will push me into the next exciting and beautiful way to express the photographic image. Engaging both archival inks and precious metals in my prints, I try to meld technology with aesthetics to capture and alter the literal landscape, making it a reflection of both my personal vision and photography’s ever-evolving path”

Catskill’s Fawn Potash is the third photographer exhibiting her work at the Kaaterskill Gallery. Potash’s experimental works combine medical imagery, satellite photographs and botanical studies in a series titled, Bodies of Water Close to Home. These multimedia works use the cyanotype process, one of the first photographic media dating from the mid 1800’s. The artist coats thin rice paper with a hand painted, light sensitive emulsion, exposing the images to the sun and processing in plain water.  The resulting pieces go back to the studio, to be dipped in beeswax, creating a transparent “skin” on which she can add drawings and photographic layers to the front and back of the piece. Potash’s anatomical/botanical studies follow a period of mysterious migraines triggered by sensitivity to light. As an area of medicine which is poorly understood, her diagnostic process has brought her into contact with a variety of medical images. This series builds on earlier works exploring correlation between nature’s systems as expressed in the smallest and largest views of the earth, plant life and our own bodies.

For more information, phone the Gallery at 518 263 2060. Kaaterskill Fine Arts is located in Hunter Village Square, 7950 Main Street, Village of Hunter.



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