Earth, Water, Sky
Nancy Rosene rambles along, communes with nature, photographs here and there, and these things connect her with the earth, water and sky of her places.
This portfolio titled "Earth, Water, Sky" is a subset selection of images from one of the "places," the great Lake Michigan. Her work is examination of the Lake's upland and lowland forests, lake plains, clay bluffs, dune fields, rocky cliffs and ridges and its sand and pebble shores. It is exploration of the effect of elements on the fragile ever changing magnificence of this landscape.
Nancy Rosene is a contemporary fine art photographer living in Northwest Indiana. Nancy captures song birds, botanicals, water and landscapes and brings them to life using digital collage-like layers of brush strokes and textures. In the studio, she is a story teller with images that will take you on a visual journey.
A background in Graphic Design stimulated Nancy's imagination and offered her the opportunity to expand perception of form and design. In retirement she began studies in Fine Art Photography at the Chicago Botanic Garden. During that time, her interest in capturing images digitally emerged and grew eventually earning her a Certificate of Merit, Fine Art Track and a Certificate of Merit, Master Track.
Nancy's work has been selected for juried exhibitions at the San Francisco Center for the Book, San Francisco Library, Midwest Center for Photography, Art Barn, A Smith Gallery and by South Shore Arts at the Center for Visual and Performing Arts. Her work has been published in Chicagoland Gardening magazine.
Prints in the portfolio are digital Inkjet prints, 13" X 19", 2022, $250 each.
"From Eternity To Here"
In the series "From Eternity to Here" Cindy Kontis imagines taking steps back in time before computing, overpopulation and competition generated a starving planet. Cindy retreats from the crowd to embed in nature and open spaces, in distances challenging her camera's capture and the viewer's ability to see her, simply an element of nature, in the now.
As trust and communal belonging becomes increasingly fraught, humans parse life into quantifiable commodities, extricating themselves from the web of nature and all living things into which they were born. Metrics of acquisition, fantasies of power, and winning competitions to be anointed the best formulate identity and success. The conscious mind is taxed, left with less insight into why we do what we do. The race compromises true sense of self, a state of being requiring attention and focus. We stand nearly blind in face of the impace of our behavior.
Like stars in recent satellite images seen at distances billions of years ago in time, in the images comprising this series "From Eternity to Here," Cindy becomes a time traveler, perhaps more wise, already different than the image of her on her camera's sensor. In what the viewer sees she was small, confident and enduring in communion with the towering forest, vast horizons and indefinite colonies of infinitesimal and imperceptible being living (with) in open land. Cindy was grateful to run free and dream in their presence and she now fears their loss.
Cindy Kontis' work explores family history and memory in the face of evolving technologies. With a BA Degree in Psychology and Education, and an Urban Planning Master's Degree, her early photography generated solo traveling photography shows. Konits received a full merit scholarship to Maryland Institute College of Art MFA program, then became Adjunct Associate professor, Stevenson University MD, teaching Video Art, Darkroom and Digital Photography. In 2011 Konits began a full-time studio based practice. She was selected 25 Best in Fine Art and Photography in 2019, 2020 and 2021 by the Creative Quarterly Journal of Art & Design, and was awaraded First Prize in The Photo Review 2021 Competition. She won awards in numerous categories in the 15th, 16th, and 17th Julia Cameron and Pollux awards. Her work has appeared in The In-Between Journal of New Media Photography, PhotoNostrum, and Shots magazines. She is represented by The Commotion Virtual Salon, Vancouver B.C.
Prints in the portfolio are archival pigment prints, 18" X 24", 2022, $650 - $800 each.
Scientists fight a never-ending battle against our sensory experience of the nature of the universe — scientific "truth" — they challenge our most basic assumptions. Each time a new scientific theory is offered, from Copernicus to Galileo, to Newton to Einstein and Bohr, we are forced to question or at least to enlarge our point of view.
Take Copernicus. For centuries, we humans clung to the belief that the sun and the planets revolved around us. We were central to God's whole plan. But the data did not line up. The planets moved irregularly and Mars went so awry that it sometimes moved backwards. Generations of scientists proposed increasingly complex explanations but none before Copernicus took a different point of view. Copernicus imaged standing on Mars. From there, he deduced that it was Earth that moved around the sun, not the reverse.
And yet, it does not seem that way to us. In our experience, we are at the center, standing still at the beating heart of a revolving earth-centric universe. As Mel Brooks jokes, "sixteen out of nineteen people revolve around the sun". In fact even now, there are respected scientists who continue to place us, at least intellectually, at the center. The current proponents of this theory call it the "anthropic principle": the universe (and our brains) have evolved exactly so that we could understand its structure.
An earth-shaking example of change in point of view in science was Einstein's discovery of the Theory of Special Relativity. There are deep lessons to be learned from Einstein, not only by scientists but by artists and all of us. Point of view is foremost.
When we look at the body of work of a photographer, we can discern his style and point of view. Like the anthropic principle which spurs scientists ever forward to deeper understanding, a sense of the importance of oneself and the validity of one's point of view may be necessary to produce any coherent body of work. Fern Nesson knows from her own work that her camera points, as if by magic, toward certain scenes, colors, angles, subjects. She has a recognizable style, a point of view. Without it, wouldn't she be lost?
But there is a downside, a point at which we may have to change our minds, to stand on Mars not on Earth. Too much of the same is boring. It puts the viewers to sleep, but worse, it will put us to sleep as well. No single point of view, or even passion can account for all of the diversity and wonder in the universe. As Goedel teaches us, there is always something outside the point of view (and outside ourselves) that connot be explained or proven by any single paradigm.
The challenge is as much to see things from outside one's point of view as much as it is to honor our own. Fern does it by tilting her camera.
It's hard to reach Mars, but it's surely worth trying. As Buddha said, "If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading".
Prints in the portfolio are digital archival prints in limited edition of 24, 16" X 24" and 24" X 24", 2018 - 2022, $1,800 each.
FEATURE DATES - NOVEMBER, 2023 - APRIL, 2024
Eight highly talented photographers are featured here for the 2023-2024 issue of Portfolio Platform. Portfolio Platform provides the focus of a streamlined online presence providing the opportunity for photographers to showcase a portfolio of photographic work prominently. The portfolios are available for patrons of the gallery to go online and view, learn about the photographers and their work through the images and biographies and artist statments, and have the opportunity to purchase photographs.
PORTFOLIO PLATFORM 2023 - 2024
Susan Borowitz, West Harrison, NY;
John Diephouse, Lansing, MI;
Marsha Henderson, Sarasota, FL;
Cindy Konits, Owings Mills, MD;
Fern Nesson, Cambridge, MA;
Nancy Rosene, Valparaiso, IN;
John Pemberton, Rushville, IN;
Pamela Kling Takiff, Sharon, CT.
The series "Locked-In" explored the phenomenon of feeling stuck and the accompanying sense of failure to control the forces that seem to dictate our lives. Using metaphor and imagery that suggest the inability to move on, the series evokes the absence of agency and a perceived futility of each waking day. The choice to use self-portraiture reflects not only a personal journey, but also a common experience of women who feel consciously aware of what they should pursue or speak up about but feel impotent in the face of a dominant power: unequal relationships, demons residing in the subconscious, societal expectations and especially the disappearance of relevancy with encroaching age.
After a successful career writing for American television comedy, Susan Borowitz picked up a camera in 2011 and discovered a new medium for telling stories. Currently she practices creative self-portraiture, specifically staged narratives, where she expresses reflections of psychological journeys. Always viewing life through a comic lens, she has been described by Featureshoot as combining "the deadpan humor of Buster Keaton with the cultural critique of Cindy Sherman". Her award-winning images have been exhibited in U.S. galleries in New York City, South Carolina, Connecticut, Minnesota, and Kansas as well as internationally in Berlin, France, Livormo, Trieste, Barcelona, Hungary, and are in private collections in New York, Chicago, New Jersey, Tennessee and California.
Prints in the portfolio are giclee archival prints, 40" X 30" or 30" X 20", 2017-2023, $1,200 or $900 each.
Most often John is drawn back to images created while wandering through the back roads and small towns of the upper Midwest. Images of architecture, commerce and social life often reflect a mixture of nostalgia and a changing set of forces that shape life in the heartlands.
John Diephouse is a primarily self-taught photographer who migrated from film to digital photography about fifteen years ago. After retiring from a professional management career, he has more actively explored the technical and creative sides of this media. Most recently he has also begun exploring digital collages as a means of expression.
John Diephouse has exhibited widely and has earned recognition in local, regional, and national exhibitions. His photographs are also included in several corporate and private collections.
Prints in the portfolio are archival pigment prints, 16" X 20" and 18" X 24", 2022, $450 each.
Marsha's photographic work makes use of window glass that acts as both a mirror to within and window to the world. Window reflections often go unseen by passersby engrossed in their own routines, but she finds them to be something meaningful about our world; a glimpse of an alternate reality, of what might be, captured by a momentary play of light. The images in the portfolio capture a world in flux, evoking a sense of ambiguity and uncertainty. Photography is a way for Marsha to express these feelings and consider questions where there are no finite answers.
Marsha Henderson is a MFA graduate of Maine Media, 2023. She resides in Florida however, she spends the summers on the Canadian shore of Lake Erie near to her hometown of Buffalo, New York. After a career in financial services, she was able to pursue a lifelong interest in photography.
Prints in the portfolio are inkjet prints, 19" X 24" and 16" X 42", $900 and $1,800 each.
Trilogy is a selection of images from three related and ongoing projects, "Glimpses at the Conservatory", "The Stone Faces Project" and "Perspective". All three projects seek to find connection, perhaps intimacy, with objects, frequently observed, but not always deeply contemplated. These objects, from nature, art and architecture become allegories for life, death and legacy. Using a dramatic monochrome presentation, unique and often intimate angles of connection lead the viewer into experiences which represent aspects found on a journey through these rites of passage.
John Pemberton is a retired Marketing Scientist who's vocation is now teaching Statistics, Economics and Marketing Research as a university lecturer. He is also a photographer. He has been fascinated by the power of cameras since the age of 10. Aside from a semester of photography as a junior in high school, he is self taught. His fascination began with a Kodak Instamatic. Technical skills developed and honed using a Petri 2.8 rangefinder gifted from a family member. After a period of dormancy, his fascination with photography was rediscovered in the digital age. Following several years of working in digital, he is now transitioning back into analog image making.
As a photographer, he avoids classification into a specialty. Specific genre rotates with seasons and creative inspiration in a way that keeps the medium fresh and vibrant. Lessons learned in one genre lead to growth in others. He is a contributing writer at 35mmc and the Live View publication on Medium.com. He is also the founder of f2.8 Press, a niche publisher that focuses on presenting the work of enthusiast photographers.
Prints in the portfolio are inkjet prints on metallic paper, 10" X 10", and 9 " X 12", 2013-2022, $100 each.
Pamela Kling Takiff
As an artist and human rights activist, Pamela straddles both worlds to find beauty and meaning amidst the chaos. Having borne witness to the darker side of humanity, and to extraordinary resilience, she is drawn to images that can be transformed and interpreted to reflect her worldview.
Her camera provides the tool to capture a moment in time. She is attracted to colors and shapes; bits and pieces; broken glass; decay; and fragments of deteriorated paper and peeling paint. Images that are often overlooked become abstract landscapes filled with faces and figures.
A completed photograph is but a small portion of a larger image that has been transformed by the artist during the editing process. All context is removed, allowing the viewer’s imagination to take precedence.
Having studied with master artisans at the Isabel O’Neil Studio Workshop in New York, Pamela learned the art of gilding, faux bois, penwork, and decoupage. She is currently incorporating these techniques into her photographic works.
Pamela was recently featured in IAM Magazine (International Artists Mentoring), No. 13 – 2023, Ou les traces du temps in anticipation of exhibiting her work at 2023 ART CAPITAL, Salon des Indépendants at Grand Palais Éphémère. In 2022, she exhibited at Salon de la Société National des Beaux-Arts 160th Anniversary Fine Arts Festival at L’Orangerie du Senate, Jardin du Luxembourg. Pamela has also exhibited in the New York area.
As a human rights attorney, Pamela has spoken at national and international conferences, including at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, and has written extensively on human rights issues. Currently, her focus is on advocating for victims of sex trafficking and domestic violence. Earlier in her career, Pamela co-authored a book on abuses committed by vigilantes in the Philippines and served as an advocate for religious freedom at the United Nations.
Pamela received a Bachelor of Arts from Kenyon College and a law degree from Cardozo School of Law. She currently resides in New York and Connecticut.