Things That Kill- Kathy Vargas

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #54: Kathy Vargas

1. Are you a full time artist, if not how do you support your art?
I teach full time at the University of the Incarnate Word.

2. When did you consider yourself an artist?
I first considered myself an artist at the age of 5 when I got my first (Diana) camera. I got hooked pretty quickly. My uncle was a photographer in Laredo, Mexico and he’d come visit, Graflex in tow. To this day I use Graflex cameras in addition to the more complete Calumet 4×5.

3. What are your influences?
I’ve traipsed through the entire history of photography, in addition to looking at quite a lot of the contemporary work being made, so pretty much any of that would apply. Specific photographic influences are Hans Bellmer and Joel Peter Witkin for the grotesque; Graciela Iturbide and Julia Margaret Cameron for beauty; Duane Michals and Pedro Meyer for the surreal. However, my imagination is even more easily stirred by literature: almost anything by Gabriel Garcia Marquez; Rosario Castellanos’ Balun Canan; Akutagawa’s Cogwheels; Cecile Pineda’s Face and Frieze. Face is particularly relevant to this series.

4. How big is your studio, what kind of lighting?
My 3 bedroom house is my studio, so pretty large. I have two “shooting” rooms: the living room for larger work and a small bedroom for still-life type work. I also have a three room darkroom: one room for printing; one for washing and toning, and one smaller room for drying. I also have a room for painting and framing pieces. Lighting is simple. Usually smaller, simple lights for smaller work and Paul Buff lights when I need to photograph larger or moving subjects.

5. What is a typical day in the studio like for you? Do you listen to music, radio or tv in your studio?
There’s no “typical”. If I’m in the darkroom I listen to music (CDs). If I’m painting I may listen to music or put on a movie. But on certain days the silence is nice too.

6. What is your preferred medium? Do you work on one project at a time or several?
My preferred medium is photography, but I draw and paint on the photographs, and now I’m even drawing on the negatives by scratching them. I’ve also sewn on photos as well as collaged on them, used gold and silver leaf – whatever fits the theme. I work on several series at a time at the beginning, when I’m trying to decide what to do next. However, usually one idea comes forward; then I work almost exclusively on that series. Sometimes I think I’m done (like with the masks) and go on to another series. Then the previous idea recurs in a new way. That’s happened two or three times.

7. Do you have any special or unique tools, devices or process that you use in your art making?
Not really. I guess most people don’t use 4×5 cameras anymore, so maybe that, but that’s about it.

8. What do you do outside the studio, aside from a job?
I write. I started writing lyrics about three or four years ago, when a friend of mine from the old days (I used to do rock and roll photography) decided to do a solo CD. I asked if I could help with text and he said he’d try me out. We wrote about 19 songs in the space of three months: my words, his music. His CD is called Incantation and I wrote the lyrics for half the songs on it. The videos are all over You Tube. Albert used to be a member of Blue Oyster Cult and recently he rejoined them for a few gigs, during which he performed one of our songs “Ravens”, during his solo spot. One of my favorites from the CD is “Road Show,” which is about MY experiences on the rock road, though they do seem to coincide with Albert’s; I also really love “Ghosts”, “Voyeur”, and “Face in Your Mirror.” “Voyeur” is about photography, as you can tell in the video. “Face in Your Mirror” was inspired by Cecile Pineda’s book, Face. There’s an online review with mentions that Albert and I seem to be in sync, music-wise, and we were under Grammy consideration for all of about five days; we didn’t have a chance though, not up against Keb Mo and Greg Allman. Oh well. In addition to writing with/for Albert, I am working on a novel about rock and roll in the 1970s. That’s great fun.

9. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
My work for “Things That Kill” is pretty much typical of what I do. The subject of these photos, masks, originated with the “Innocent Age” series. The earlier masks depicted “nicknames”/perceptions I heard parents use in addressing their children: gordo/piggy; fool/stupid; monster, etc. I wondered how many times those “nicknames” became self-fulfilling prophesies. It’s bad enough when children are bullied with those names; it must be horrible to hear your parents say them. The later masks have a different slant, not as a direct relation to childhood, but as a consideration of masks worn inwardly while showing a face of normalcy/innocence to the world, specifically the concealed identities of true monsters: terrorists and murderers. How might they look if we could see their anger and hatred when they walked down the street? And so the masks returned as the hidden face of an evil-doer, reversing the usual face/mask relationship: the bland face lies; the mask is the true identity.

10. How did you approach the subject matter?
As a photographer, I need an actual object to photograph. So I’ve been using mostly Halloween masks. I cut them, stretch them, scar them, or otherwise reshape them. The extra texture added during double exposure also altered the original mask, but I want the surface to look fleshy, like skin, to make sure that the human element is read along with the idea of a monster. Recently I’ve begun to add eyes, so that it looks like there’s a person (maybe trapped) in there; I’m working on those now. Haven’t finished any yet.

11. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work in “Things that Kill”?
I think I’ve pretty much covered that, except to say that next time you hear a report about a shooting, check out the killer’s home life. (Didn’t one of those shooters kill his mother first?) Then go to Walmart, listen to the screaming parents and crying children; check out what the parents are saying to their kids, what they’re calling them. It’ll scare the heck out of you; that lack of sensitivity is one sure way to create a real live monster.

Things That Kill- Joe Crookes

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #27 part 2: Joe Crookes

P1060059

1. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
Ironworkers do occasionally take calculated risks. Crane operators depend on men with walkie-talkies to guide their blind loads to out of sight “connectors”. It is a little bit
like glass blowers in a hot shop intuitively communicating their precise intentions.

2. How did you approach the subject matter? Prographica4

I often gave the ironworkers heroic pictures of themselves. I let them know that I admired their skill and agility. I kept returning to the rigorous beauty in the large-scale structural ironwork. The strict function of the the design carries with it a strict aesthetic beauty. Even a bolt or nut, a beat up carpenter’s canvas bag have integrated beauty and function.

 

3. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work  in “Things that Kill”?
Since I was given a hard hat and permission to access all parts of the stadium during the build, I was the ironworkers’ mascot so to speak. I became part of the crew.

Things That Kill- Ellen Garvens

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #52: Ellen Garvens

eg studio

1. Are you a full time artist, if not how do you support your art?
I am a professor of Art at the University of Washington. That is how I make my living.

2. When did you consider yourself an artist?
I remember students calling themselves artists in College and I felt like I hadn’t earned the title yet. However, I did know at the time that I had found a commitment that was likely to be for life. So in reality, though it sounded pretentious at the time, I did see myself as fitting the label of an artist in my early 20’s in college.

3. What are your influences?
It depends on the series. I find myself looking at other work in Painting, Drawing and in Sculpture perhaps more than in photography for many of my series. I am interested in materials, process and accumulation in a way that fits those mediums. For the recent video work I am noticing things around me, specifically how things move in new ways. Mundane things in my immediate environment have become my inspiration.

4. How big is your studio, what kind of lighting?
I moved my studio from our basement to an empty bedroom with natural light several years ago. I was about to paint the walls white but instead started the series I am still doing now using the overly push pinned, fingerprinted walls. The aftermath of childhood activity in this room for 18 years forms the backdrop and inspiration for this series. It is tiny – only 10 x 10 feet square!

5. What is a typical day in the studio like for you? Do you listen to music, radio or tv in your studio?
My activity is pretty quiet. I am lost in thought, moving things around, setting up different cameras and points of view. I also spend time on the computer processing images and then going back to the set ups with different ideas to try. With the video work I can lose a whole day trying to get an effect to happen with the sequence because I am a novice and learning the video editing software as I go.

6. What is your preferred medium? Do you work on one project at a time or several?
I go back and forth between the stills and the videos often getting inspiration from one that leads to the other.

7. Do you have any special or unique tools, devices or process that you use in your art making?
No, but I do find that the best work is often “found” not created. That is, while I am trying to do one arrangement, another inadvertent juxtaposition happens. The aftermath of props from one idea can insinuate itself into the next set-up and add the unexpected. I am also drawn to “stupid” materials. Materials that look awkward, like a failed science experiment, but become about process, resourcefulness and humility.

8. What do you do outside the studio, aside from a job?
I have a family. Those three things, family, job and art, are more than I can handle already!

9. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
I have chosen to include objects that can kill somewhere in my still lives. I wouldn’t have normally incorporated these things but enjoyed their potential to blend with the other materials.

10. How did you approach the subject matter?
It was a fun challenge. I made a list of things that I wanted to consider. I did some internet research too. The flypaper I thought would be interesting for its dangling shape and golden color. (I also found out that there is a case where someone used the arsenic in flypaper to kill someone!) The drapery cords were something I only became aware of as a new mother. Filled with warnings about strangulation, I cut my cords so short I needed a stool to reach them afterwards. With the image called Poison I was noticing how beautiful hydrangeas are, wanting to photograph them and finding out that they are one of the most poisonous plants to consume.

11. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work in “Things that Kill”?
I was able to borrow a room at the University of Washington larger than my studio to shoot these images. With it I had access to a huge ladder and towering perspective I couldn’t achieve in my small studio. That additional height allowed an extended sense of space in the Flypaper image I am continuing to experiment with.

 

Things That Kill- Graham Shutt

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #24 Part 2: Graham Shutt

shutt-studio-2016.jpg

1. In what way is you work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill?”
If my photograph, The New / Oxford / Annotated / Bible // with the / Apocrypha // Expanded / Edition // Revised / Standard / Version // An Ecumenical / Study Bible // Oxford (2016), reflects the theme “Things That Kill,” it does so indirectly as I’ll attempt to explain below.

2. Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
Norman Lundin remarks in his curator’s comment for the current exhibition, “In our last thematic show, Observing Observing (a white cup), the content . . . was essentially emotionally neutral, devoid of psychological associations. . . . In Things That Kill, because of all the psychological associations, the content is the polar opposite of the ‘white cup.’ It is this red button content that is challenging.”

Because my photographs tend to be about processes rather than representations of identifiable subject matter with which one associates specific emotions, I found it helpful to interpret the prompts for both the previous exhibition and the current one in a slightly different manner. Rather than focusing on the emotional valence of the subject matter, I found I could think of Observing Observing as being about form and Things That Kill as being about content. My task, then, was to represent form in the case of Observing Observing and to represent content in the case of Things That Kill.

3. How did you approach the subject matter?
For Things That Kill I had thought to begin by photographing the text of the passage in Plato’s dialogue Apology of Socrates in which Socrates recounts the accusations brought against him by Meletus, that he is “guilty of corrupting the minds of the young, and of believing in supernatural things of his own invention instead of the gods recognized by the State” (24b – c). As we know, the jury finds Socrates guilty of all three charges and, in a separate vote, sentences him to death. As I worked I became interested in the books I was photographing. I decided to make a book rather than a text my subject.

4. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work in Things That Kill ?
Even though I use a DSLR, a raster graphics editor, and an inkjet printer to make photographs, I nevertheless do as much work as I can in the camera. The principles of “straight” photography, first expounded by Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, and the other members of Group f.64, still hold true today.

shutt_new-oxford_2016_archival-inkjet-print_18x12_web

“The New Oxford Annotated Bible / With the Apocrypha / Expanded Edition / Revised Standard Version / An Ecumenical Study Bible / Oxford”, 2016, archival inkjet print, 18 x 12″

Things That Kill- Dianne Kornberg

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #35 Part 2: Dianne Kornberg

Kornberg Studio

1. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
“Madonna Bomb 2” is the second in a series of four pieces that are a response to a poem by Celia Bland. The poem describes a suicide bombing, while referring metaphorically, in the context of the project as a whole, to the “bomb” of childbirth and parenting. It is one of twenty-six images that make up the exhibition and book titled Madonna Comix.

The stylistic elements I employed for this series are unique in my work–I developed them for this particular image/text project.

The subject matter–a pregnant woman wearing a suicide vest, plus the included poetic and comic text, is loaded content, at the very least the shock of a woman surfacing as a militant combatant in a religious cause, a jihad. For me there is an equivalency between the content and the “art” and I believe the art holds its own. But you will decide for yourself if the piece is “front-loaded.”

2. How did you approach the subject matter?
The project began when Celia sent me a selection of poems about the Madonna. I found that they addressed a range of ideas: the physicality of childbearing, self-sacrifice and suffering, ecstasy and adoration. They spoke of fears and choices and of things we take on faith. They spoke to multiple experiences of being a woman.

I considered the “smart-alecky” nature of some of the poetic text. I decided to scan Lulu comic book pages, and partially erase the images to serve as the surface on which to work. The proto-feminist “Little Lulu” comic books were empowering to me as a girl in the 1950’s because Lulu stepped outside gender roles–she went her own way, had opinions, out-witted the boys. I allowed some of the Lulu text to show through to serve as a “down to earth” commentary on Bland’s lyric language. My working process was very experimental. I utilized skills from my background in painting, printmaking, and photography. In addition to the figure, I included in the image the pentimento comic book page, a map of Jerusalem, a selection of text from the poem, and text from Little Lulu.

3. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work in “Things that Kill”?
When I began working with the poem “Madonna Bomb” I went on-line to learn about suicide bombers. I came across a picture of a 15 year old girl hand-cuffed to a chain-link fence, wearing a suicide vest. At the time I did not realize that girls were being used as suicide bombers. The Lulu text included in Madonna Bomb 4 reads, “A little girl! WHAT?”

Madonna Bomb 1

“Madonna Bomb 1”, 2012, archival pigment print

Madonna Bomb 2 copy

“Madonna Bomb 2″, 2012, archival pigment print, 31″ x 20” image, 32.5 x 21.5” framed (included in “Things That Kill”)

Madonna Bomb 3

“Madonna Bomb 3”, 2012, archival pigment print

Madonna Bomb 4 copy

“Madonna Bomb 4”, 2012, archival pigment print

Things That Kill- Caroline Kapp

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Things That Kill curated by Norman Lundin

“Consider, for example, such varied assassins as leaded water, pills, red meat, too much sun…. Consider, for a moment more, that of the many things that kill, countless are appealingly beautiful as well as lethal, seducing artist and viewer. How to handle these “killers” in such a way that the intended expressive implications are conveyed, is as formidable an artistic challenge as engaging the more overt content implied by the show’s title.” -Norman Lundin

Including work by: Fred Birchman, Brian Blackham, Marsha Burns, Joe Crookes, John Fadeff, Ellen Garvens, Jim Holl, Michael Howard, Amy Huddleston, Caroline Kapp, Dianne Kornberg, Riva Lehrer, Brian Murphy, Elizabeth Ockwell, Anne Petty, Glenn Rudolph, Graham Shutt, Kathy Vargas and Evelyn Woods

September 1 – October 29, 2016
Opening Reception: First Thursday, September 1, 6 – 8pm

Artist Interview #29 Part 2: Caroline Kapp

Kapp_Photo_In_Studio-1

1. In what way is your work a reflection of the theme “Things That Kill”? Is your work for this show in line with or an exception to your usual way of working?
Working within a theme is a natural way of working for me, whether it’s a single image idea or larger concept for a series. I generally start everything with sketches, but looking back at the initial concept work for this show, I started with written words and scenarios. Things like ‘ways to be killed’ and ‘things that can die’. This led to more words, ‘suffocation’ ‘buried’ ‘canned’ then concepts like what we find ourselves living up to, or what can break us down, air and breath. Those led to more ideas about what doesn’t kill, what lives and thrives. The sketched images emerged out of those words and concepts. So the process for creating the ideas for this theme was a little different because of the words and scenarios I considered before the sketches that dissected ideas surrounding ‘things’ and ‘kill’ independently of each other as well as together.

Kapp_KillSketches

2. How did you approach the subject matter?
The subject matter came directly from the sketch concepts, so all of it had to be gathered and staged in different ways, and that’s not unusual in my approach. Some of the objects I worked with for this show required some unusual manipulation or arrangement though, like ‘Consumed’ with the empty cellulose capsules that had to be melted layer by layer with warm water around a straw to form the shape. It took about 6 days to fully dry, and by then it had started decomposing which was fascinating to watch. This theme pushed the need to transform the subject matter more than usual. There was a lot of waiting and gritting of teeth waiting for something to collapse, wilt, pop or explode before actually capturing the imagery or even setting things up.

3. Are there any anecdotal notes that may give insight to a new viewer about your work in “Things that Kill”?
The title struck me as menacing when I first heard it, and the show theme really made its way into my subconscious. I think that’s a good thing to happen in any theme or series-based work, but it surprised me; for a while, every article and book I read, every site I looked at, every commute and trip to the grocery store began to relate to killing or surviving – food, work situations, basic needs, power struggles, medicine, health and physical deterioration of all types. This theme definitely led to working with a few new materials and techniques to explore different ways to realize the ideas in relation to the theme – materials that are impermanent, techniques that are not lightfast, things that are really fragile and can break up, fog or deteriorate easily.

 

The Black and White Photo Show: Dianne Kornberg

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With each exhibition, we will post interviews with the participating artists along with a photo of said artists in their studios and images of their work. In the future, we will post videos of artist interviews.

The Black and White Photo Show, a group exhibition of work by Marsha Burns, Eduardo Calderón, Dianne Kornberg, Carolyn Krieg, Glenn Rudolph, and Andrew Yates (1945 – 2011) opening January 9, 2016 and continuing through February 27th.
There will be a reception for the artists on Saturday, January 9th from 2-4 pm.

Artist interview #35: Dianne Kornberg

DK 12-15

1. Are you a full time artist, if not how do you support your art?

Yes, I am now a full-time artist. I retired from teaching at Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland, Oregon in 2007 and my husband and I moved my studio to Obstruction Island, an outer island in the San Juans. The island has only three permanent residences, and no services. The relative isolation allows for a tremendously productive studio environment for me.

2. When did you consider yourself an artist?

“Artist” was always spelled, in my mind, with a capital “A.” Even though I was oil painting in the third grade, I was in my forties before I felt comfortable with the label.

3. What are your influences?

In a long career like mine, they are VAST! The primary influences on my work come from science and the natural world, and from an education and studio career in the visual arts. For the past several years I’ve been collaborating with poets.

4. How big is your studio, what kind of lighting?

My studio is a one-room, 800 square foot building. Lighting is tungsten and florescent, there’s a skylight, and west facing windows. I have a 500K viewing station for color evaluation, and a 6 x 16 foot steel wall for hanging and viewing work.

5. What is a typical day in the studio like for you? Do you listen to music, radio or TV in your studio?

I usually go out to the studio in the morning, break for lunch and a walk, and then return in the afternoon. There’s a rhythm to the passage of time on the island, distinguishable more by weather than by the day of the week. I mostly work at the computer, although some days I might photograph new material for a project, or do various tasks like record-keeping and other drudgeries that are part of the process. The only time I listen to the radio is when I’m doing these tasks—when I’m making work—I find it distracting. I don’t have a TV in the studio.

6. What is your preferred medium? Do you work on one project at a time or several?

After almost twenty years of making silver gelatin prints, I’ve been printing digitally since 2001. I work on images in Photoshop and print with an Epson 44” inkjet printer. I usually work on one or two projects at a time.

7. Do you have any special or unique tools, devices or process that you use in your art making?

My process on the computer is experimental and varies dramatically depending on what I’m working on. Basically I start with film and/or digital photographs that I combine and work on in Photoshop. My work is some kind of hybrid that combines my painting, drawing and photography backgrounds. I do extensive proofing before printing finished images—that I can make the print myself is an important part of my process.

8. What do you do outside the studio, aside from a job?

I garden. I bake bread. I read. I watch the weather. I usually walk every day. We grow most of the vegetables we eat because a trip to the nearest store and back usually takes three or four hours. There is a wonderful library in Eastsound—we spend a lot of time reading, especially in the winter.

9) How is your process different in the studio compared to when you are out in the world?

The studio is a private place. It’s where I do most my work. Occasionally I carry a camera in the ‘world’ to get material for particular projects (most recently for “House of Stone” and What is Left”). But generally, I make my photos in the studio.

10) What is the emotional impact of the tone in your work?

It varies widely depending on the underlying concept that’s generating the piece(s). For example, “Madonna Comix” plays stylistically off comic books. In “Arachne” I created fictional specimen pages, like those found in a herbarium, so that I could incorporate the poetic text as ‘scientific notation.’ In “What is Left” (part of the grief work I’m doing with poet Elisabeth Frost), altered photographs of oyster shell mounds are desiccated and lifeless landscapes that suggest stasis, weight, a bearing down on the text written below the image.

11) In your mind, what does it mean for your work to succeed?

Looking at what I’ve done over the years, certain pieces seem to hold up especially well. Everything still ‘feels right’–they are the pieces that I don’t want to make any changes to, and that continue to engage me visually and intellectually. I consider and value interesting responses from viewers that are generated by the work.