Saturday, March 14, 2009

Abstract Depressionism


No I'm not depressed -- I was just trying to be clever with the title. Although I have wondered whether this winter's foray into abstract photography has been an escape from reality. The worlds I find inside chunks of ice and the patterns I'm seeing in everyday objects and landscapes don't require much of me. They just exist, waiting to to be discovered. Most might be considered fantasy in some way...reflections, illusions, implied shapes, and tiny spaces that appear to be immense.

ice-veins-specks
Many of these images are ending up in Looking Into Ice or Looking At Ice, but if you've followed my Flickr photos lately, there's been a real hodgepodge of things showing up. Like much of my stuff, it's not everyone's idea of a good time, but if you are curious, there are some abstract goodies hidden in there: branches, water paths, bubbles all lined up, wire grids, pine needles, a boat slicing through a painting, venetian waves, perfect puzzles, stacked logs, old wood, creepers, winter glories, rust, cracked earth and rose hips (which made a very fine tea later on).

ice-embossed1


ice-silver-coral-close


ice-surface-close


ice-bubbles-light-dark


frost-gradient

6 comments:

Chris said...

Can I rephrase slightly?

"The worlds I find inside ME and the patterns I'm seeing in everyday objects and landscapes don't require much of me. They just exist, waiting to to be discovered. Most might be considered fantasy in some way...reflections, illusions, implied shapes, and tiny spaces that appear to be immense. "

Those tiny spaces that are limitless on the inside, those are possibilities. Those are the seeds of optimism and hope. And we gloss right over them because they just seem like the smallest, insignificant voids, but when you turn the eye to exploring them, this is what you find.

This is why your art here resonates so deeply with me...you are taking a picture of what meditation looks like.

When you have your first solo show, I want to write the text for your catalogue! The liner notes for your DVD...whatever...

Jules at 7-Imp said...

Jeremy, I have been so busy this past week (I'm tellin' you what -- I'm not even one of those mamas who goes overboard on kid birthday parties, but having just one simple one with some friends over takes a lot out of you)....anyway, I kept seeing your ice photos (via Flickr) on Facebook and waiting to find time to sit down and look at them. Well, I finally just did. They are STUNNING. Just.....wow. I can't even comment on my favorites, 'cause it would take too long.

Thank you so much for sharing them with us.

I'm with Chris -- these need to be a solo show or...I dunno... a book. Not that doing either one of those things validates them in any way -- they're perfect existing here for you and for us. But they're beautiful, and I wish the whole world could see them. I love what Chris wrote, too.

Jeremy said...

Yes Chris, please rephrase any time! I love your extension of the metaphor. I've found that my natural critical/skeptical tendencies acknowledge those opportunities and possibilities, and immediately find all the clever reasons why they'll never work; why they're bad ideas with no potential. That negative process is rooted in fear, of course -- dismissing possibilities means I never have to put myself on the line; never have to be vulnerable.

The feedback I've received on this project from you, Jules (below your comment) and others has helped override that fear and kept me digging into an esoteric and not-very-accessible subject. It would be great if I was just pursuing an independent artist's vision without depending on outside encouragement, but I'm grateful for the nudges and kind words. I'd rather be a creator than a critic.

"a picture of what meditation looks like"
Iiiinteresting. The process of taking these photos has been meditative. I've often thought of Flow because I lose track of time, putting in sustained effort and often not realizing that I'm frozen and hungry and late.

You're welcome to write the text for the hypothetical catalogue. I've been reading a fascinating book that has me meditating on some of the global implications of ice on the planet -- Ice: Beauty, Danger, History -- powerful stuff, and lots of food for thought in extending the metaphor and significance of the topic even further.

Jeremy said...

Thanks (yet again!) Jules. Your feature at 7-Imp really got me thinking about these photos and the process/purpose of them. You make a good point -- they are already being displayed right now for the whole world to see. But just having them available online won't mean that anyone will find them.

I'm stewing on the word you used -- validate -- and the concepts surrounding it. I don't want to take myself too seriously, but I would like more people to appreciate the photos. I think anyone doing creative work probably ponders that question occasionally, especially dabblers like me.

Andromeda Jazmon said...

These are just amazing!! I was watching the NOVA show Extreme Ice tonight and thought of you and your ice photos. Have you seen these photos of glacier ice by James Balog? http://www.extremeicesurvey.org/

Jeremy said...

Wow, thanks for that link. They're doing some incredible work...and creating amazing images.