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Terri Weifenbach's XXII/38
By Alexandra JoSpring is currently flourishing in northern New Mexico. The high desert is teeming with flowering cacti, wild grasses, and lush green pine forests. The earth feels alive in this season. For me, being outside in this fresh, colorful atmosphere reflects what it might be like to step inside a Terri Weifenbach photograph.
By Alexandra Jo

Terri Weifenbach, XXII/38, Chromogenic Print, 22x14" Image, Edition of 14, $5,500

Spring is currently flourishing in northern New Mexico. The high desert is teeming with flowering cacti, wild grasses, and lush green pine forests. The earth feels alive in this season. For me, being outside in this fresh, colorful atmosphere reflects what it might be like to step inside a Terri Weifenbach photograph.

I have recently had the pleasure of re-visiting photo-eye Gallery’s physical archive of Weifenbach’s work. Using color film to make lustrous C-Prints, Weifenbach photographs plants, gardens, and landscapes to create dreamy, saturated fields of bright hue and texture. The spaces that she captures in her work are verdant, immersive, slightly blurred with selective focus. Viewing her photographs feels as though one were walking through a dream, lush and expansive.

For me, the most impressive part of the work is Weifenbach’s ability to capture clarity and haze simultaneously in each image. Her use of selective focus shortens the depth of field in her images to help the viewer feel as though they are directly inside the photograph. A slight blurring of foreground or periphery imitates the sensation of turning one’s head to take in the full wonder of a new space, or the movement of branches and petals shimmering in the wind. The fact that this complex composition and portrayal of space is all done in camera makes its effectiveness even more impressive.

In XXII/38 Snake Eyes/Lana (pictured at top), Weifenbach captures the delicate bodies of two periwinkle butterflies fluttering in a flowering bush. The branches and blossoms closest to the viewer are out of focus, hovering in midair like phantoms. These blurred orbs seem to press forward, almost out of the picture plane. It’s the middle ground of the photograph that is in perfect focus, drawing the viewer’s attention to the back side of the plant where the gentle blue butterflies dreamily pollinate bursts of fuchsia blossoms. It’s almost as if Weifenbach is giving us x-ray vision through the plant, or forcing us to imagine peering through the branches and leaves to witness this one tender moment.

Losing oneself in the palpable fecundity of Weifenbach’s work is a true pleasure. Whether her photographs feature wild plants in a landscape, flowers in a garden, or a tree in someone’s yard, she brings her viewers directly into contact with wonderful visual sensations. Each photograph offers an up-close and personal experience with nature and opens a dialogue about our human relationship with the world around us.

XXII/38, Chromogenic Print, 22x14" Image, Edition 1/14, $5,500 is currently in stock and ready to ship at photo-eye Gallery. 

For more information, and to purchase prints, please contact photo-eye Gallery Staff at

Weifenbach has also recently released a new photobook, which is a part of the Des Oiseaux series, available through photo-eye Bookstore.

Des Oiseaux
Photographs by Terri Weifenbach 
Editions Xavier Barral, Paris, France, 2019

Hardbound, Signed: $50.00
Limited Edition w/ Print: $775

» View Additional Books by Terri Weifenbach

» View Additional Prints by Terri Weifenbach

photo-eye Gallery 
541 South Guadalupe St., Santa Fe, NM 87501
–View Map

All prices listed were current at the time this post was published. 
Prices will increase as print editions sell.

Book Of The Week Somewhere Along the Line Photographs and Text by Joshua Dudley Greer Reviewed by Blake Andrews From 2011 to 2017 Joshua Dudley Greer traveled over 100,000 miles by car, focusing his camera on the massive network of superhighways that has become ubiquitous throughout the United States.
Somewhere Along the Line. By Joshua Dudley Greer.
Somewhere Along the Line  
Photographs and text by Joshua Dudley Greer

Kehrer Verlag, Heidelberg, Germany, 2019.
144 pp., 10¾x13½x¾".

Long ago, at the tender age of twenty, I went on a classic American road trip. Three friends and I hopped in a camper and headed east from California. Over a three-month period we circumnavigated the core of the country, sleeping in parks, showering at college gyms, day laboring, and absorbing unfamiliar places.

Interstate 5, near Grapevine, California, 2014
Our experience is shared by a broad swath of the American middle class. The great American road trip is something of a rite of passage for the nation's youth. The U.S. is a huge physical space. A thick web of interstates and secondary byways connect most locations easily, surrounding wide pockets of unfamiliar territory. The whole thing is custom-suited for fickle wandering.

Road trips dovetail nicely with photography. Not only is the medium stoked by exploration, but photography requires physical proximity to function. Unlike painting or writing, one must be in the presence of a subject to make its photograph. Locomotion is required, so road trips feed the photo furnace. Indeed, where would American photography be without them?

For starters, Robert Frank's The Americans would not exist. Nor would Uncommon Places, American Prospects, Sleeping By The Mississippi, Highway Kind, A Period Of Juvenile Prosperity, or Royal Road Test. Large chunks would be missing from the oeuvres of Dorothea Lange, Joel Meyerowitz, Mitch Epstein, Todd Hido, Ryan McGinley, Lee Friedlander, and Henry Wessel, just to name a few. The FSA archive would probably not exist. Not to belabor the point, but the road trip is as central to American photography as Kodak or Szarkowski.

Interstate 70, near Salina, Kansas, 2014
Among the recent crop of road trippers is Joshua Dudley Greer. Between 2011 and 2017, from his home base in Tennessee, he put over 100,000 miles on his car, view camera in tow. For Greer the nation's road network was not simply an accommodation, it was his photographic subject. Or, to be more specific, his foil. "These roadways," he wrote as the project was developing, "have been designed to suppress any distinguishing characteristics of place and instead construct a familiar and uniform system of functional spaces built for mobility and productivity."

Them's fighting words, or at least they were initially. But a funny thing happened on Greer's way to critiquing the American highway system. He found countless scenes of quiet reverie and beauty. Sixty-two of them have been collected in his debut monograph, Somewhere Along The Line (Kehrer, 2019). A handy diagram in the back of the book (quoted graphically on the cover) charts his travels, along with trip descriptions annotated by date.

Interstate 75, near Lenox, Georgia, 2014
By any road trip standard, his travels were prodigious. They weave through virtually every corner of the lower 48, then out to Hawaii before stretching up the Al-Can through Canada and into the Alaskan interior. Like Greer's wanderings, the book samples democratically from all sections of the country. By my count 37 states are represented. I don't know if it's possible to summarize the entire breadth of the U.S. photographically, but Greer gives it a darned good shot.

Elkview, West Virginia, 2016
But enough about Greer's methodology; what of his photos? In a word, strong. Greer's picture making is precise and engaging. He knows where to stand, how to inject narrative, and most importantly what include and exclude from his photos. Throw in the ability to edit the mess into something cohesive, and he's got all the tools. The result is a road trip book that can sit comfortably on the shelf with Uncommon Places and American Prospects. Yes, it's that good.

Somewhere Along The Line wears the influence of Sternfeld and Shore proudly on its sleeve. A photograph of a semi rolled onto its flank brings to mind Sternfeld's elephant photo. A man standing in a dumpster and a model Hummer at White Sands are just as peculiar. As with much of American Prospects, open narratives leave the viewer hanging, wondering "what's the story here?" If Sternfeld is Greer's absurdist muse, Shore provides the bones. The first photo in the book, a freeway sign under renovation, seems to be a direct homage to Shore's Klamath Falls. Throughout the images to follow, Greer's clean precision and acute knack for positioning recall Uncommon Places. A bird's eye view of an oxbowed freeway is just about perfect in every way. Later on, a Baltimore urbanscape is a dystopian homage to Shore's famous Philadelphia van shot.

Interstate 83, Baltimore, Maryland, 2014
The Baltimore image exemplifies a darker current: the forgotten underbelly of America. On the one hand, photographs of displaced families, homeless camps, lost souls hanging cardboard, chain-linked greenspaces, and discarded toys are incredibly contemporary. On some level, this is the current American status quo. But photographically they trace a lineage 60 years back, to The Americans. How much has changed since the late 1950s? Depends who's counting, but you might not like the answer.

All of the material described above takes place within gas siphoning distance of various roadways, and sometimes under them, or looking down on them, or in an adjoining parking lot or gas station. Even when the material wanders astray, Somewhere Along The Line never lets the reader forget that it is a road book. Greer uses a cumbersome camera, so car proximity is a must. But as I hinted earlier, the impulse goes deeper. "While some may view this [road] infrastructure as nothing more than a necessary evil of modern existence," Greer writes, "it can also be seen as a manifestation of our collective consciousness, our failures and aspirations."

U.S. Highway 80, between Selma and Montgomery, Alabama, 2015
Okay, roads are a necessary evil. So why are Greer's photographs so enjoyable? An ambiguous situation. Just to clear up any lingering doubts in the reader's mind, Ginger Strand's hard-hitting afterword, “Intertatia,” critiques interstates from a historical perspective. In Strand's mind, highways fall somewhere in the neighborhood of puppy killers or chemical weapons on the societal reprobation hierarchy. The contrast with Greer's beautiful imagery is jarring, but thought-provoking.

Greer's photos are packed with information across a wide depth of field. Fortunately, the book is scaled to allow for large reproductions. The book is nearly 11”x14”, with photographs around 9”x12”. The colors and tonality are spot on, with a wonderful semi-matte sheen, and slightly desaturated to remain authentic to the original scenes. Throw in two essays, maps, and a detailed travel itinerary and the whole package is quite an impressive debut. This book is bound to inspire some great American road trips, perhaps with cameras in tow.

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Lewiston, Idaho, 2015

Blake Andrews is a photographer based in Eugene, OR. He writes about photography at

photo-eye Gallery Julie Blackmon: New Work Represented artist Julie Blackmon releases three new works. Blackmon nimbly straddles the line between realism and surrealism, while confronting contemporary cultural realities.

Julie Blackmon, Talent Show, 2019, Archival Pigment Print, 22x22" Image, Edition of 10, $4,000

For such a strong, stylistically cohesive body of work, Julie Blackmon’s photographs are fascinatingly multifaceted in their approach to subject matter. The elaborate, stratified scenes she captures in her photographs can feature varying combinations of interiors, landscapes, architecture, adults, children, plants, and animals, each work embodying its own precise atmosphere. However, a common thread of theatricality connects each individual image. The dramas that unfold before Blackmon’s lens are subtle, drawing the viewer in with rich colors and textures and leaving open-ended questions about the complex narratives she creates. Blackmon nimbly straddles the line between realism and surrealism while confronting contemporary cultural norms. One could study a Blackmon photograph multiple times and find some new aspect of the complicated story she weaves upon each viewing.

Blackmon was born in Springfield, MO where she still lives and works. She is one of nine children and many of her siblings and family members still live in the Springfield neighborhood in which they grew up. She often uses family members, friends, and neighbors in her photographs, which are staged then captured digitally in-camera, as opposed to photomontage. In a recent conversation with photo-eye Gallery, Blackmon elaborated on the conceptual framework behind one of three brand new images just released on photo-eye’s website:

"Talent Show (pictured above) was very much inspired by seeing the Circus Sideshow exhibit at the Met two years ago. It featured various painters from Seurat to Picasso, who often mined the sideshow theme during the 19th and 20th centuries. About the same time, in real life, my nieces and nephews were putting on their own makeshift talent show outside my sister's garage for friends and neighbors. So was just one of those things where one experience mirrored another, and the idea of the "stage" really intrigued me, so I decided to do my own version of Talent Show. The baby is my nephew, Sonny, who at 8 months, has so much hair he looks like he's wearing a toupee. It wasn't hard attracting a crowd when we shot this one Sunday afternoon. Some of my other nieces and nephews helped me as the 'backstage' characters." – Julie Blackmon

All three new works are still available at their introductory price in each size:

Talent Show, 2019
(top of page)

22 x 22 Inches
Edition of 10
Starting at $4,000
32 x 32 inches
Edition of 7
Starting at $6,500
40 x 40 inches
Edition of 5
Starting at $9,000

31 x 26 Inches
Edition of 10
Starting at $4,000
42 x 36 inches
Edition of 7
Starting at $6,500
57 x 47 inches
Edition of 5
Starting at $9,000 

26 x 41 Inches
Edition of 10
Starting at $4,000
36 x 57 inches
Edition of 7
Starting at $6,500
44 x 71 inches
Edition of 5
Starting at $9,000

All prices listed were current at the time this post was published. Prices will increase as print editions sell.

For more information, and to purchase prints, please contact photo-eye Gallery Staff at

Book Of The Week Anthropocene Photographs and text by Edward Burtynsky Reviewed by Karen Jenkins Anthropocene is a multidisciplinary body of work which serves as both a visceral expression of humanity's incursions on the planet and an urgent cry to acknowledge humankind's responsibility.
Anthropocene. By Edward Burtynsky.
Photographs and text by Edward Burtynsky

Steidl, Gottingen, Germany, 2018.
224 pp., 104 illustrations, 11¼x14¼".

Edward Burtynsky is working harder than ever to reveal (his carefully chosen word) landscapes the world over—marked, scarred, and irrevocably transformed by human activity. For his latest project, Anthropocene, he has partnered with Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier to create a publication, traveling exhibition, feature-length film, and an interactive website.

Tyrone Mine #3 Silver City, New Mexico, USA, 2012
In the service of these multi-disciplinary efforts are the latest and greatest technologies and tools. Having first adopted digital photography in 2006, Burtynsky now employs a 40-foot pneumatic monopod, drones and airplanes, and satellite imagining to achieve the dizzying comprehensiveness of his photographs. When his vision strains against the typical constraints of clarity and print size, he digitally stitches together images on a massive, mural-size scale.

The project title itself is epic in its scope and implication. Anthropocene refers to this period of time beginning in the mid-twentieth century, when our impact on the Earth was deemed more than an aberrational blip, but rather a dire and lasting intrusion. And still, Burtynsky’s photographs overflow these parameters, in stripped layers of ancient rock and depleted fossil fuels, as well as in ominous signs of future peril.

Dandora Landfill #3, Plastics Recycling, Nairobi, Kenya 2016
Short runs of images arranged in sections such as urbanization, agriculture, and energy are paired with detailed texts that contextualize the visual evidence offered in Burtynsky’s views. Equal to the challenge of digesting all that’s contained in each large color plate (this is a big, heavy book), is the concentration required to simply keep one’s eyes on track while reading these densely impactful texts stretching across long pages.

Saw Mills #3, Log Booms, Lagos, Nigeria, 2016
A thorough analysis of deforestation around the world, and its ripple effects on biodiversity and human habitation, for example, primes us for the comparably information-packed photographs to follow. Images such as Saw Mills #3, Log Booms, Lagos, Nigeria, 2016 and Log Booms #1, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, 2016 depict the downstream aftermath of burgeoning timber operations. Splintered and fractured log groupings appear on a staggering scale, and flip from macro to micro in my perception. Suddenly, diseased cells manifest against thick, opaque grounds, eerily elegant on matte black and cloudy green.

Uralkali Potash Mine #2, Berezniki, Russia, 2017
Images in the Extraction section, such as Uralkali Potash Mine #2, Berezniki, Russia, 2017 hum with a deep interiority, with Earth’s gouged out subterranean spaces mimicking a vividly colored scene inside a troubled mind. The analogy the book offers to a fossil-like form is apt, but not as a benign and static artifact. These hypnotic spirals threaten to suck you in, echoing the reality of those giant sinkholes which have endangered the local Russian community.

Rock of Ages #15 Active Section, E.L. Smith Quarry, Barre, Vermont
I’ve always been drawn to Burtynsky’s work through a sense of my own responsibility not to turn a blind eye to the unprecedented environmental crises of our time. And surely, this work at first seems a close second to seeing the evidence “with my own eyes.” But, does revelation lead to action? And is this word, revelation, even a just label of Burtynsky’s work? He writes, “We feel that by describing the problem vividly, by being revelatory and not accusatory, we can help spur a broader conversation about viable solutions.” His collaborators, Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier, echo this sentiment, adding that their (and our) shared culpability disallows a position of separation or superiority relative to the other, the perpetrator. And yet, I would argue that such a reservation of judgment precisely indicates a point of remove, between artists and the problem at hand. And, furthermore, that it is possible, and important here, to be both revelatory and accusatory (as the publications’ essayists seem to be given liberty to be).

Log Booms #1, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, 2016
In particular, poems by Margaret Atwood (no stranger to going dark, in dark days) inserted throughout Anthropocene do just that. In “Fatal Light Awareness,” she writes of a bird meeting its death flying into an illuminated window pane: “your light is the birds’ last darkness,” and further, “We are a dying symphony—No bird knows this, but us—we know, what our night magic does.” A certain stunned paralysis is commonplace in the face of nearly incomprehensible peril. May we all find ways to zoom back in, and each one, do what we must.

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Building Ivory Tusk Mound, April 25, Nairobi, Kenya, 2016

Karen Jenkins earned a Master's degree in Art History, specializing in the History of Photography from the University of Arizona. She has held curatorial positions at the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson, AZ and the Demuth Museum in Lancaster, PA. Most recently she helped to debut a new arts project, Art in the Open Philadelphia, that challenges contemporary artists to reimagine the tradition of creating works of art en plein air for the 21st century.

photo-eye Gallery Join us in Santa Fe's Railyard Arts District for the Last Friday Art Walk Friday, May 31st 5–7pm By Anne Kellyphoto-eye Gallery will be open this Friday, May 31st from 5–7 during the Last Friday Art Walk in Santa Fe's Railyard Arts District.
By Anne Kelly

Did you know that photo-eye has been selling prints and books online since 1996? It's true and for that reason, among others, photo-eye has a robust online following. We also have two beautiful brick-and-mortar spaces in Santa Fe, New Mexico. photo-eye Gallery is proud to be located in the vibrant Santa Fe Railyard Arts District (SFRAD), which consists of nine contemporary art galleries plus the contemporary art museum SITE Santa Fe. Located seven blocks southwest of the downtown plaza, SFRAD was voted one of the top 10 arts districts in a USA Today Readers' Choice poll.

From USA Today:
"A few blocks southwest of the Santa Fe Plaza, the Railyard Arts District features several leading art galleries, including the contemporary powerhouse SITE Santa Fe, within a series of warehouses within walking distance of each other. In partnership with the neighboring Railyard area, the district hosts art-centric events like Last Friday Art Walks and free Fridays at SITE."

photo-eye Gallery in Santa Fe, NM

On the final Friday of every month, SFRAD galleries stay open late to host an art walk, which often feature exhibition openings, artist receptions, and special events. This month the Last Friday Art Walk will be held on May 31st from 5-7 pm. If you haven’t had a chance to view our current exhibition, Christopher Colville: Flux, this is a great time to do so.

Flash forward to next month: Friday, June 28th is the opening reception for Kindred Spirits: The Familiar and the Wild featuring Keith Carter, David Deming, Pentti Sammallahti, and Maggie Taylor. Both Maggie and Keith will be teaching workshops at the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops the following week.

We will admit to being a bit biased, but if you love art and haven't been to Santa Fe yet, you should absolutely visit. Santa Fe is rich with history, great food, natural beauty, and a healthy fine art scene. Santa Fe is the oldest state capital in the country, has an estimated population of (only) 83,000, and boasts over 240 art galleries—no, not all of them are Southwestern in style. There really is something for everyone. photo-eye Gallery relocated to the Railyard Arts District about five years ago when a beautiful space with great light became available. In 2018, photo-eye Bookstore moved to a larger location in the new Siler Rufina Nexus, just around the corner from Meow Wolf, and will be celebrating their 40th anniversary this October!

Santa Fe Railyard Arts District Gallery Map

Christopher Colville: Flux currently on view at photo-eye Gallery.

• • •

Current Exhibition
Christopher Colville: FLUX
On view through Saturday, June 22nd

For more information, and to purchase prints, please contact Gallery Staff at 505-988-5152 x202 or

photo-eye Gallery | 541 S. Guadalupe Street, Santa Fe, NM 87501 

photo-eye Gallery Energy, Light, and Chaos
An Interview With Christopher Colville
By Alexandra JoChristopher Colville speaks with Gallery Assistant Alexandra Jo about his process and inspiration behind his unique photographic works in Flux.
by Alexandra Jo

Christopher Colville at photo-eye Gallery
It’s always compelling to engage with art that braids visual pleasure and conceptual expansion together. As someone who has been through art school, it’s especially exciting to come across work that truly presents itself as an unexpected mystery, an open question, in both meaning and how the work was created. For me, that’s exactly what Christopher Colville’s work does. His atmospheric, yet corporeal gunpowder-generated silver gelatin photographic images use light to point to darkness, examine landscape and objecthood through the abstract, confounding viewers about how a photograph could be made without a camera. I had the pleasure of meeting Christopher at the opening of Flux, his solo exhibition currently on view at photo-eye Gallery, and spoke with him about his process, sources of inspiration, and cogitation behind his work in the show. He elaborates on these topics in our interview below:

Christopher Colville, Fluid Variant 3, 2015, Unique Silver Gelatin Print 12x15" Image, $3,550, Framed

Alexandra Jo:     In one of your statements you mention that this method of working with gunpowder came out of a collaborative project with a poet, but its invention has deeper roots in your childhood: lighting fireworks and shooting empty shotgun shells with your father, and later, collecting small amounts of gunpowder from your father’s shotgun shells with your friends to experiment with making small sparks, smoke, and explosions. How important was that return to the curiosity, openness, and playfulness of childhood in creating this unique process? 

Christopher Colville
 Photograph by Josh Loeser
Christopher Colville:     I am an idea-based artist who is driven by curiosity. I have a lot of questions about the world and the medium of photography and I am always looking for new ways to engage those questions. Remaining open to surprise and new experiences are the most important things I can do as an artist. Openness to surprise and the unknown is robust in childhood but often muted in adults. Maintaining a healthy sense of wonder and awe opens the door to new questions and ways of engaging the medium.

AJ:     There is such a clean line between these materials and what you were doing with your friends as a kid… do you feel like this is a creative path you’ve been headed down since childhood or was there more of a sense of rediscovery/remembering?

CC:     There is a strangely clean line between my childhood experiments and the work I am doing today but it hasn’t always been the case.  My work has taken a meandering path, I have taken on many jobs, engaging a variety of questions and making wildly different work, but I have always followed my curiosity.  I grew up exploring the desert lots that surrounded my neighborhood, building forts in the dry river beds, searching for artifacts on hillsides and occasionally breaking the rules and blowing things up.  I am the same person today. The freedom I had growing up formed my understanding of the world; it is less about returning to childhood curiosities, instead, it is about never having let go.

Christopher Colville
Meditation on the Northern Hemisphere 2, 2011
Unique Silver Gelatin Print
20x24" Image,$4,300 Framed
AJ:     Has this process evolved in methodology and practical approach since its beginning? How so? Are the spirit of experimentation and openness to failure important?

CC:     It is important to me that the work is continually evolving both conceptually and physically.  Once that stops it will be time to move on. In the early stages of this work, I was seduced by the volatility of the process and thrilled by anything that showed promise. Over time I have gained an understanding of materials while building a vocabulary of mark making to put to use in engaging larger questions. The work is still full of surprises and failure plays a huge role. I feel that we have to embrace failure because it provides an opportunity for understanding, it is necessary for growth, and discovery, and can be beautiful at times. It is important to jump head first into the unknown.…predictability is boring.

AJ:     I feel like for many viewers the conversation around this work becomes very centered on process and figuring out exactly how the images are made. However, I feel a deeply meditative quality, an underlying concept and idea driving the work. Is there a specific connection between your process and your conceptual framework? Does your approach change from series to series conceptually, in practice, or in both ways? 

CC:     The process of this work is engaging. Understanding how things are made provides an entry point for conversation, but the process is just the beginning. I dove into this work because I am interested in bigger questions. I am fascinated by the dual nature of creation and destruction, issues of power, violence, beauty and the sublime. I am interested in turning photography inside out and questioning issues of perception. Those willing to look beyond the initial spectacle of gunpowder and smoke often find more engaging conversations. 

Each series within this work shifts to engage new questions. The genesis of the work was an exploration of the base elements of the photographic medium and over time the work has evolved to explore energy, fluid, motion, light, chaos, reactive materials, and violence. Early prints reference the vast darkness of the universe with celestial illusions. The Dark Hours Horizons move toward meditative simplicity with prints that are reduced to a single line, a delineation. This single line disrupting the traditional flat surface of the paper, suggesting depth and the discovery of a landscape that does not exist. The most current work engages issues of violence, power and American volatility with images I find to be both horrifying and revelatory. The life-size human forms emerge from bullet-riddled acts of violence are much more complicated to deal with emotionally.

Christopher Colville, Dark Hours Horizon 98, 2017, Unique Silver Gelatin Print, 8x21" Image, $4,060 Framed

AJ:     In one of your statements you use a quote from Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy (which also happens to be one of my favorite lines from that book) that touches on our inability to perceive the strangeness and inevitable ephemerality and calamity in our world. There is a sense of the unknown and uncontrollable here that points to ideas like entropy and chaos. In a previous discussion, we had talked about McCarthy’s ability to capture darkness in a beautiful way, as he does in this quote.  Do you think that dichotomy or tension between the inherent darkness/chaos of nature and traditional notions of “beauty” is important, or at least has a place, in your work?

Christopher Colville
Flux Variant 2, 2018
Unique Silver Gelatin Print
25x9" Image, $3,860 Framed
CC:     I return to passages from Blood Meridian often and every time I am filled with a sense of wonder and dread. McCarthy weaves beauty into the most debased acts of human nature calling attention to deeply problematic involvement in destruction; destruction that is often based in our compulsion to live. We are entangled in the strangenesses of the world that are both awe-inspiring and horrific. I believe this is a strangeness that we will never fully sort out, but through artwork, we can call attention to the contradictions and awaken a desire to be fully present and aware of the conflict that resides in our own belief systems. I believe this is particularly poignant for artists working in the landscape where lines are drawn and artists often choose sides. Our relationship to the land is complex and I want to reflect the totality of experience, taking responsibility for my actions but leaving room for a sense of wonder. Beauty can be a vehicle to span the gap, creating a rupture in our understanding.

It is human nature to be fascinated by the ugly or tragic. We are drawn to conflict and tragedy perhaps as a way of mitigating our own guilt or exercising our values. Maybe as a measure of our own moral compass, in an effort to feel better, feel lucky, feel happy. Artwork such as mine, and writing such as McCarthy’s may work in the opposite direction, seducing you in with beauty or fascination, but then the real exploration begins, the potential for discord and poignancy revealed. 

William Kittredge writes in The Nature of Generosity, “It’s in our nature to keep coming back, touching the wound, trying to heal ourselves.”

AJ:     You mention in a piece of writing that you are drawn to the mystery of the desert, and many of the literary quotes that you highlight in various artist statements center around that specific landscape. Can you elaborate a bit more on that, and how it relates to your work?
Christopher Colville, Dark Hours Horizon 28
Unique Silver Gelatin Print
21x30" Image, $10,600 Framed

CC:     I feel a deep connection to the desert. There is a freedom of spirit in the desert southwest that feeds my experimental tendencies. It is harsh, beautiful and full of contradictions. My work is a reflection of this space.  I find nourishment in the freedom of vast open desert, expansive sky and ability to get lost in the landscape. On summer nights I ride desert trails cutting through the center of the fastest growing county in the country. These trails follow the ruins of the ancient Hohokam canals, linking swaths of desert preserves that appear as dark pools surrounded by the lights of the massive city. On the trails I encounter coyote, javelina, Gila monsters, all pronouncing that the wild spirit of the desert exists in the heart of a city of 4.3 million. The desert is truly a part of me, as I am a part of it. Nearly my entire existence has been an experience occurring in the desert. The openness of the land is critical. I need to work outdoors in the darkness of night in a space that I won’t bother neighbors with my slightly theatrical acts. Relocating elsewhere would primarily change me, which would undoubtedly change my art.

Christopher Colville
Untitled Work of Fire 4-17 #1, 2017
Unique Silver Gelatin Print
13x11" Image, $2,800 Framed
I have spent a great deal of time hiking a beautiful portion of land in southern Arizona that runs parallel to the US-Mexico border. Since 1941 the land has been used as a gunnery range providing training for aerial and air-to-ground combat. Sections are littered with unexploded ordnance and I have been told of a forest of gliders sticking out of the ground like oversized lawn darts after being pulled behind airplanes for target practice. The great contradiction is, this land is likely the most pristine, undeveloped portion of the Sonoran Desert. I am fascinated by spaces such as the gunnery range, spaces where history and mythology are embedded in the landscape. I often think about the Trinity site and scars both visible and unseen affected on the land in our attempts to exercise power and control. These things all influence my work. The gunpowder is, however, less about gunslingers and the wild west and more about energy, heat, power, creation, and consumption. I often use black powder, a composite discovered by alchemists searching for the elixir of life. What they found was not an elixir, but instead a reactive compound used for beautiful celebratory fireworks as well as a weapon that would kill untold numbers of people.

AJ:     Furthermore,  “Place” seems to be key also in the work’s physical creation… needing darkness to create the explosions, which make images on the photographic paper, and to develop them. You do all of this on-site. Does being in the openness of the desert influence the imagery? Do you think the work would change if the landscape around you were different?

CC:     I am still wrestling with the body of work titled Beyond Reckoning. This work is challenging but I am coming to terms with it and excited about a group of images I haven’t shown, titled Revenies. In addition, I am expanding the scale of work and chasing a number of new questions. I am not sure where they will take me but excited about the prospects. I was going to say I love this point in the working process, but when I shared this thought with my wife, she was correct in calling my bluff by saying,

Do you? Maybe you love some elements but let’s be honest, it causes a little anxiety—maybe you love that it forces you to sit down and read, forces you to go for desert adventures looking for new artifacts to ponder, forces you to write and get your thoughts out. But somehow I think this also ties into the conflict—you get comfortable with it all being “sorted out” and are looking for the conflict again.

She knows me better than anyone.

• • •

Christopher Colville: FLUX
On view through Saturday, June 22nd

For more information, and to purchase prints, please contact Gallery Staff at 505-988-5152 x202 or

All works listed were available for at the time this post was published.

photo-eye Gallery | 541 S. Guadalupe Street, Santa Fe, NM 87501 

photo-eye Gallery From the Flat-Files:
Kate Breakey's Orotones
By Alexandra JoGallery Assistant Alexandra Jo profiles a new selection of Orotones by represented artist Kate Breakey now available at photo-eye Gallery.
By Alexandra Jo

Kate Breakey calls her process “an act of investigation—a passionate attempt to establish an understanding of the natural world.” Her luminous Orotones (images printed directly onto glass then backed with hand-applied gold leaf) certainly offer a broad approach to this spirit of examination, featuring subjects from lunar eclipses, to foreign landscapes, to nude figures, to intimate portraits of the fragile bodies of insects. This week, I’ve had the pleasure of carefully cataloging this series of Breakey’s work while preparing a new portfolio of her photographs for photo-eye Gallery’s website.

Kate Breakey, Full Moon Setting, Archival Pigment Ink on Glass with 24kt Gold Leaf, 8 x 10" Edition of 20, $1,370

What first struck me about the work is the capacity for variance within this process. Each image is printed in an edition of 20, but the hand-application of the gold leaf and the custom framing that accompany the images make each work feel exceptional and unique. The way the light catches specific variations and details in the laid gold visually captivates, creating a glowing quality of tonal warmth. The works are capable of transforming before the viewer’s eyes. Each image is cast in a shimmering gold aura as light qualities shift, even in environments of low light. Breakey keeps the physical size of the works relatively small; the largest images in this series only measure about 20 x 24 inches. This offers the audience an equally intimate experience of each work, regardless of subject matter.

Kate Breakey, Chrysanthemum,
Archival Pigment Ink on Glass with 24kt Gold Leaf,
8 x 10" Edition of 20, $1,320
"Making images of these things is a natural extension of being fascinated, touched, or intrigued by them. This process of seeing, and recording transforms me. It is how I express wonder and love, a form of dedication. It is also a record of my life and my desire to connect myself to all other things, the acknowledgement of a search for explanation, for meaning and significance, a primal longing to grasp things which are unknowable."
— Kate Breakey

As a visual artist, this sentiment resonates strongly with my own conceptual intentions in the studio, especially the impulse to observe and record as a means of connecting with the wider world. The way Breakey looks at scale from micro to macro in this series makes me think about those big, enigmatic questions of meaning and significance, and attempt to orient myself as a human being in the universe. Ultimately, the inquisitive spirit and visual luster of the work are a beautiful marriage of visual pleasure and deeper emotion and thought. Breakey’s work invites the viewer to go past the purely aesthetic and draw bigger, more meaningful connections within our world.

More of Breakey’s Orotones can be viewed in her new portfolio on photo-eye Gallery’s website.

All prices listed were current at the time this post was published. Prices will increase as print editions sell.

For more information, and to purchase prints, please contact photo-eye Gallery Staff at
(505) 988-5152 x202 or

• • • • •

» View Additional Work by Kate Breakey

» Read More about Kate Breakey

» Purchase Books by Kate Breakey

Las Sombras/The Shadows (left) 
University Of Texas Press, Austin, 2012
Photographs by Kate Breakey
Hardcover [Signed]: $75.00

photo-eye Gallery
541 S. Guadalupe Street
Santa Fe, NM 87501
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Book Of The Week Not Just Your Face Honey Photographs by Stefanie Moshammer Reviewed by Owen Kobasz Not Just Your Face Honey is a photographic series by Austrian artist Stefanie Moshammer (born 1988) reflecting on the line between love and delusion. It is based on a love letter written to her in March 2014 by Troy C., a man unknown to her, which led the artist to explore questions of surveillance and stalking.
Not Just Your Face Honey. By Stefanie Moshammer.
Not Just Your Face Honey 
Photographs by Stefanie Moshammer

Spector Books/C/O Berlin Foundation, 2019.
144 pp., 67 illustrations, 8¾x11¼x¾".

“HELLO, HELLO the Upper Most incredible, sensational, Amazing, and Beautiful girl/woman or anything I’ve ever seen!! I knocked on your door or the house you are helping at because I was looking to say Hi to my ex-girlfriend. Forget her, I couldn’t believe my eyes and ears when you opened the door twice. Not just your face honey but your voice melted my Heart!”

These are the opening lines to a letter Stefanie Moshammer received in March 2014 from Troy C., a near stranger. The unprovoked letter followed a five-minute encounter one week earlier. Moshammer was staying in Las Vegas to shoot Vegas and She when Troy knocked on her door looking for his ex-girlfriend. Moshammer’s new series, Not Just Your Face Honey, uses abstract imagery to explore the emotions provoked by this overwhelming declaration of love.

Published by C/O Berlin in conjunction with Spector Books, the eye-catching photobook is covered in a deep green, almost reflective, vinyl fabric that changes, like a holographic card. The first pages showcase Troy’s letter — not as a text supplement, but rather, as an object. Each of the three images zooms in closer than the last, inviting the feeling — to open such a document. The letter is then broken up into fragments scattered throughout the book among Moshammer’s images, intertwining the two narratives into one, new object.

“Please, Please stay in our Beautiful, wonderful country and you can stay with me at my awesome House anytime”, reads one page. The following photographs trace a journey: A sign for Interstate 15, pointed towards Barstow, CA. The mountains. A strangely beautiful camper, mirroring the surrounding desert. Gas stations and motels. The open road. And finally, car headlights shining on a suburban house. Blurred figures walking the street.

The images are inconsistent. Some are color, others are black and white; one may take up a whole page while another is the fraction of the size. Through these images, however, a narrative is carried. In some ways it is an exploration of what Moshammer’s life would have been like had she accepted the offer, had she driven out of the state and stayed in Troy’s “Awesome” house. Troy’s words serve as the frame for Moshammer’s photographs, Moshammer’s photographs illustrate how the words may actually feel.

At no point in the series, however, is there a truly idyllic image of love. The first formal picture is a satellite image with Moshammer’s address highlighted in an orange circle, which immediately invokes the ideas of surveillance that have become especially poignant in the age of GPS smartphones. Although by accident, he does know where she lives, giving him power and altering the dynamic in any relationship to follow

The letter Moshammer received was addressed to “Austria Girl.” Stefanie Moshammer is Austria Girl, but Austria Girl isn’t just Stephanie Moshammer. The lack of a name in a document this intensely personal goes on to highlight the impersonal nature of the whole affair. Moshammer captures the impersonal nature in her portraits — they’re faceless. Faces are cropped out, covered by jackets, or intentionally blurred, leaving bodies, without identities, doing things.

Three uncovered portraits do appear towards the end. They are, however, so washed out that it’s nearly impossible to make out their facial expressions. Like ghosts viewed through very thick glass, there is nothing that you can discern about them — they could be anyone or everyone.

Not Just Your Face Honey is more than a reaction to this bizarre love letter. It uses the scattered format found in the original document to put forth a powerful exploration of love, illusion, surveillance, and identity. Throughout is an outsider view of America, through beautiful landscapes and open roads, as well as more sinister elements. “I can be your ticket to USA citizenship” — and a page of bald eagle stamps with a lone image of a woman in bubble wrap, an exotic export. Moshammer creates a narrative of impressions, inviting the viewer to follow her feelings on this bizarre occurrence.
Owen Kobasz edits the blog & newsletter at photo-eye. He holds a BA in the liberal arts from St. John's College and takes photos in his free time.