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Posts from the ‘Fine Art’ Category

Season’s Greetings

2020, what can one say that hasn’t already been said? Nothing that could be shared on a family site, that’s for sure. Like nearly everyone else on the planet, my life was turned upside down in March of this year. My day job, which I love very much, is that of a professor, really a teacher. I am fortunate enough to have the chance to work with some truly terrific students. In March, they rallied in spite of everything that was going on, and we, the faculty, tried to keep up with them. Actually, most of us tried to help them which was tough because we were caught in the same fire storm.

When you are trying to teach or learn (or probably do anything), everything on line is more difficult than it is face to face. Everything takes more time. Everything takes more energy. You are much less sure of whether or not you are being understood and whether or not you are understanding your students. There is almost no time for “chatting” which turns out to be one of the most important activities in which humans engage. Chatting is where we really find out the truth, what is going on, how someone else is doing, and how you’re doing. You can’t schedule an accidental chat on line.

I have had 110 students in the fall, 85 or so more this spring. Luckily, the spring folks are people who I got to know in the fall. We did a sprint in the fall semester, August 24 till the day before the Thanksgiving (U.S.) break. No vacation days, no holidays, just keep at it. But we got some good work done and we got to know one another. Now we are in the middle of a two month break before we go into another sprint. I have to say, I miss them, most of the time….

But I’m OK, the family is OK, no one who was close to us got the virus….and hopefully we’ll keep it that way. We were blessed with a new granddaughter in January, before the roof caved in. We can all whine with the best of em, but we really are very fortunate. There but for the grace of God go I. Some of my students (my students are all online and all over the world) did get covid. They have all survived. It’s terribly real and terribly frightening. Don’t believe for a second that some young people as well as their families don’t become terribly ill. They do. In the U.S. we screwed this up royally. It didn’t have to be as bad as it has become. Help, as everyone knows, is on the way. Everyone in my world is anxious to take the vaccine and get on with life (though we all know that it won’t be that simple or that quick).

So the photographic work had to take a bit of a back seat. I do have two large projects underway and hopefully the galleries will be opening by the fall. I will be returning to blog writing from here on out, as I love it, and I don’t like the limitations and craziness of Facebook, etc. The two projects I do have underway have some serious angst attached, not surprisingly, so they didn’t seem right for the season.

Fortunately, I had an alternative. If you’ve read this blog for a while you may recall these images. They are from a series titled, “The Color in the Grass.” These are very high key images of fall grasses taken at the Broadmore Audubon location in Natick, Massachusetts. On a lark, I entered them in a juried exhibition pool at Photoplace Gallery in Vermont, the exhibition being appropriated titled “Botanicals.” Amazingly, one of them made the cut.

Those of you who like botanical/flower imagery should take a look at the exhibition, which is posted on line. You can find it here. The imagery in the show is amazing. I can’t for the life of me figure out why my image was chosen, but nevertheless, I appreciate the honor! Here are some additional images from the set, a seasons greetings to you all. Here’s to a much better 2021!

Black and White Magazine

I’m very gratified to announce that Black and White Magazine has just published portions of my “Deindustrialization Portfolio.” (June 2020 issue)

Earth Day 2020 Online Exhibition

I’m grateful to have been included in “Earth Day 2020” hosted by Gallery Sitka. As mentioned in my previous post, this exhibition was to have opened this week, but things have changed, as we all know.  Art continues however.  This is a mixed media exhibition.  I am a huge fan of photography been shown with other forms of visual art.  Melissa Richards, the curator, has done a great job of curation.   I particularly drawn to her use of color.  You can find the online gallery here.

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Deindustrialization Opening

Deindustrialization Invitation for web

If you’re in the Boston area, I want to invite you to the opening of my exhibition, “Deindustrialization,” taking place Thursday evening, November 7 from 5 – 7 PM.  The exhibition consists of twelve large scale portraits of textile mills from the Blackstone Valley region of Massachusetts and Rhode Island. There will be an artist talk shortly after 5, mingling, and I believe free food!  The opening will take place on the campus of Babson College, in the Hollister Gallery.  Directions are here.

I want to thank BabsonArts and Associate Director Danielle Krcmar for making this all possible.  This work was sponsored in part through a sabbatical grant from Babson College, for which I’m also most grateful.  The work was printed on metal, an amazing process, by the wonderful folks at Blazing Editions .  Working with them and more specifically Juliette Pascale was a joy.  The results were stunning.

On another note, this exhibition is really a bit less of a celebration and more of a remembrance.  The industrial revolution in the U.S. and indeed around the world, a revolution that is still going on in many places, brought with it a tremendous upsurge in wealth.  At the same time, it brought with it massive sacrifices on the part of those who did the work and the communities in which these mills were built.

The raw materials for the cotton mills prior to the U.S. Civil War were farmed by enslaved workers kidnapped from Africa.  Even after the Civil War the combination of share cropping arrangements and terror enforced by organizations like the KKK imposed the most severe hardships on those involved.  Working conditions in the mills, though not as bad as one would find in England at the time were extremely harsh.   The environmental degradation that occurred because of the mill industrial waste and the repeated damming of the rivers of the Blackstone Valley is still with us today.

At the same time, mill employment helped to create, at least in part, a melting pot, bringing people together from much of the world, into what became in many places a real community.  Some of those communities still exist today as well.  The boom and bust phenomena, a phenomena which continues unabated, is ultimately a harsh developmental path for our society.

Small Stones Festival of the Arts Exhibition

Greetings.  For this in New England, I want to pass along an invitation to join us this coming weekend in Grafton, Massachusetts for the Small Stones Festival of the Arts (access the link for more information and directions).  This represents a cooperative effort on the part of a number of area arts organizations as you can see.

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I am grateful to the photography jurors (Nancy Burns, Scot Erb, Donna Dufault and Robert Ring) for choosing a number of my images for exhibit.  They represent a fairly electic display, so we’ll see how that all works.  I’ll be there on Friday night and again on Saturday afternoon.

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Goodnough Dike Monument