Vanessa Marsh & Jessica Skloven
Exhibit Dates: December 3, 2014 - January 3, 2015
Opening Reception: December 3, 6-8pm
RayKo Photo Center’s Residence Program was developed to continue our support and education of fine art photographers. Selected artists receive unlimited access to RayKo’s facilities for a six-month time period, with each artist's residency culminating in an exhibition in our gallery. Past residents have included Eric William Carroll, Klea McKenna, and Meghann Riepenhoff. This fall’s residents continue on the path less taken. Both Vanessa Marsh and Jessica Skloven have spent countless hours in our color darkrooms making chromogenic prints, a process and a skill that many have forsaken in this digital age of photography.
Vanessa Marsh actually goes so far as to make her own negatives…painting and drawing on layers of acetate and paper and combining them all in the darkroom to create large nighttime landscapes inspired by an amateur interest in cosmology and physics. These dark skies with saturated celestial patterns of invented galaxies and nebula speak to our mediated experience of the night sky and nature in general. Colors, assigned to gasses and light waves that the naked eye cannot see, are presented and consumed as truth. Giant mural c-prints of these invented scenes build on Vanessa’s interest in translating drawings and paintings into photographic form.
Jessica Skloven is exposing 4x5 sheets of color film…but not in any traditional manner. She slips the sheets of film under the covers, under pillows, in between sheets…these images are created without the confines of a camera, without control and without the essential aspect of what makes a correct photograph – focused light. They are made sometimes over long periods of time, buried deep under layers, being exposed with tiny light from dark windows and ambient spills from careless LCD screens. In many cases, they are failures, images built up too densely to view or left for too little time without enough light to imprint them. The process is one embedded in ritual. Perhaps an exercise in anti-documenting, these are photographs as uncertain objects, records of instability in an attempt to pin down a constant.
They are just slow light leaking onto plastic.
Jessica’s work centers around the material relationship between the illusions that occur in the natural world and those that are produced—both in the act of photographing and in the re-constitution of those images when they are transferred to paper. Using photographic process, she imagines the simultaneous impossibility of the abstract and the familiarity of the real, precariously combining to counter photography’s often-presumed objectivity. The resulting c-prints are sublime and sensual, drawing the viewer into their mysteries.