Black and white and beautiful
I’ve always been a big fan of black and white photography and film. I love the play of shadow and light, and I find that black and white pieces are often more textured, interesting and nuanced than colour. Tell the truth, can you imagine Casablanca or The Great Dictator in colour? I thought not. So I do wish I had a reason to be California-bound — specifically toward Venice, where the G2 Gallery is launching Visions of America, an exhibition of photographs by Clyde Butcher, curated by Jolene Hanson. These 30 silver gelatin prints are of America’s National Parks, including Yosemite and the Florida Everglades. These are beautiful, beautiful photographs, loaded with depth and drama. Take a look at the two shown above -- Agawamuck Creek and Seven Cabbage Cut Cover.
Butcher’s been likened to Ansel Adams, a master of landscape photography. But the exhibit organizers suggest that Butcher’s approach to light is more “intuitive” than Adams’ technical virtuosity. My photo buff husband says that’s the result of Adams' commitment to zone photography. Coincidentally, a collection of Adams’ work will be seen in January in Turlock, Ca.
Butcher uses cameras ranging from four by five inches up to 12 by 20 inches, sometimes requiring custom enlargers to accommodate his huge prints.
These images are more than just pretty pictures; Butcher’s an environmentalist who’s been instrumental in bringing international attention to the issues facing the Florida Everglades, where he makes his home.
The G2 Gallery will host an opening reception with the artist in attendance on January 20. His work can also be seen at G2's booth at the LA Art Show.
The $5 admission benefits the World Wildlife Fund, and the G2 Gallery will donate all proceeds from art sales to the WWF. I so wish I had a few spare grand sitting around. Sadly, however, I still have two more kids to get through college. But if I did have extra dough, I would treat myself. In the meantime, maybe I'll go and see The Artist. Again.