Congratulations to The Image Flow's 2019 Artist in Residence Program recipients: Arielle Rebek and Gretchen LeMaistre.
The Image Flow recently held our second annual call for entry to our Artist in Residence Program, with the goal of providing our equipment and resources to assist photographic artists with the creation of their personal work. With this year’s AIR Program, we are proud to show our continued support to the photography community as a whole.
Having received many outstanding applications again this year, the selection process was difficult, to say the least. The quality, media choices, and concepts presented by the wide variety of artist applicants were inspiring and thought-provoking.
After careful deliberation, we are very excited to announce that we will again have the pleasure of hosting two exceptional artists, who we believe will benefit greatly from the use of our traditional and alternative darkroom facilities.
The recipients of our 2019 Artist in Residence program are Arielle Rebek and Gretchen LeMaistre; read on to learn more about each artist, their unique work, and their creative processes.
Arielle Rebek is an Oakland-based artist creating experimental photographic work, often without the use of a camera. Using light-sensitive material and a physical process of image making, she explores how photographs represent and alter experience. Currently, Arielle’s focus is on our human physical and emotional responses as they relate to distance and scale within space.
During her time as Artist in Resident, Arielle plans to employ traditional, alternative, and digital photographic practices to continue working with concepts she previously explored in three bodies of work: Fixing a Shadow, Timeline of place, and Returning to… (Develop before April 1972). Arielle will also be creating handmade pinhole cameras and uniquely embossed photograms, which will act as evidence of her investigation into spatial relationships.
Read on for a more in-depth look at the themes and processes Arielle is interested in from her artist statement:
“With the present-day dependence on images, camera phones, and social media, I feel an urgency to reflect on the origins of photography. I am interested in how this medium translates reality and influences the experience of the present. My photographic works employ experimental techniques in which I often bypass the camera to work directly with light sensitive material. Through a physical and meditative process, I create evidence of space and interaction, which highlights the illusion and materiality of my medium. Found archives, ephemeral material, and embodied experience play an integral role in my methods of image making.”
– Arielle Rebek
Gretchen LeMaistre is a Bay Area-based artist exploring our human relationship to the natural world through photography and print media. Her subject is often the landscapes and parks of rapidly transforming Florida, where the environmental impact of climate change, land use, and rural development can be acutely seen in Florida’s coastal wetlands. Born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida, Gretchen traces her own cultural and personal heritage to Florida through her research, studio, and photographic documentary practices.
During her time as Artist in Resident, Gretchen plans to advance her Brackish series with a print edition using the historical printing process of salt prints developed by Henry Fox Talbot. She will also be expanding on her Kingsley photo ink collage series that bridge her art practices of drawing, painting, and photography.
Read on for a more in-depth look at the inspiration behind her Brackish series from her artist statement:
“During an artist residency in March 2019, I was invited to take a boat ride around Turnbull Bay, a salt and freshwater estuary in New Smyrna Beach, Florida. Having grown up there, Florida is for me a place of memory and the marking of time. These days I hear my mother saying, “Well, all this is gonna be underwater soon.” In 2017, our family home was destroyed by a hurricane Irma river surge. Flooded with these memories, I photographed double exposures in camera while the boat traveled.
Turnbull Bay is just one example of a Florida landscape that is transforming rapidly from a salt marsh to a mangrove ecosystem. Recent hurricanes and warmer temperatures have allowed invasive mangrove trees to take root further and further north. As they announce the troubling arrival of climate change, mangroves also provide benefits of carbon storage and storm water protection. I am interested in the way that humans and wildlife coexist in these habitats, with all that is on the horizon.”
– Gretchen LeMaistre