Versatility of photography on display in new Cerulean exhibition
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by Chip Chandler — Digital Content Producer
A new exhibition opening Friday at Cerulean Gallery will show there’s a whole world beyond a point and a click.
Focal Point, which opens with a 6 to 9 p.m. Friday reception, will feature nine Amarillo and regional photographers with works ranging from traditional darkroom realism to digitally manipulated abstracts.
“It’s such a versatile medium,” said Dawn Barker, gallery co-owner. “We really want to showcase a wide variety of styles under the umbrella of photography – everything from abstract … to surrealistic to traditional, black & white … old-school prints.”
It’s the gallery’s first show to focus solely on photography, she said.
“There are so many aspects now to photography now with the way technology has changed, so we thought it would be interesting to put together a show that … covers a wide range.”
Audiences will see landscape works by Amarillo residents J. Greg Burgess, Chip Coscia and Charles Kitsman, as well as Dumas resident John Key and Amarillo native Garrett King, who has a large Instagram following as Short Stache. Ismael Burciaga will display works with a surrealistic bent, while Kim Robbins and Peter Robbins will show works on enhanced canvas.
Amarillo photographer Steven Mayes often shoots close-up details of architecture or landscapes, then digitally manipulates slices of images together. He said photography is popular because “it is something we can relate to simply because if the imagery is there and somewhat comprehensible, it gives us contact with the world we know.”
“If we start altering (images) by changing the color and changing the shape … it may retain some of the same connections but will make us look at something … with a different view,” Mayes continued.
Kitsman also incorporates some abstract imagery in his landscape work. He said his interest in photography grew from his work in sculpture.
“I found that it just became something that I had to do,” said Kitsman, who also works as an Amarillo financial planner. “It was easier to capture images, and it allowed me to get out in the landscape and understand this sense of place.”
He said he’s pleased that technological developments have exploded and opened the art form up to new possibilities.
“You can do anything you imagine, just about,” Kitsman said. “You can create things that never existed in reality. … It’s remarkably creative now.”
Burgess, an Amarillo banker by day, agreed.
“It’s a technology and medium that lends itself to diversity and individual use,” Burgess said. “There are an infinite number of subjects you can focus on.”
A portion of proceeds from opening-night sales will benefit the American Foundaiton for Suicide Prevention.