Subscribe to Blog via Email
To most people, landscape photography denotes a sense of place. That’s probably the last thing that will cross your mind when viewing the mind-bending and exuberant landscapes by Ellen Waitzkin in her solo exhibit Water/Reflections, on view in The Paul Dietrich Gallery at Cambridge Seven Associates in Cambridge, Massachusetts through April 21st, 2017.
Undoubtedly, Waitzkin’s multiple frames contribute to one of the most remarkable things about her imagery – the distinct sensation of elapsing time. Her use of slightly different framing for each segment in her images creates the perception that moments are passing before our eyes. The flutter of leaves, ripples in water, a jogging shoreline or swirling wake, all conspire to magnify this subliminal effect.
Much more obvious to viewers is Waitzkin’s magnificent experimentation with the color spectrum. Although she constructs multiple frames with her photographs and has an affinity for inverting them to create “negative” imagery, color is the only thing she alters. That’s right, no layering or editing in Photoshop, just an uncanny manipulation of perceptual and psychological effects through color shifting. Those colors are like beacons.
From afar, the pigments in Waitzkin’s prints form lyrical, often abstract patterns. Then, the crisp definition of the photographs reveals details, like objects below the water’s surface or spits of spray above the waves. Those individual elements and the layering of sky, vegetation, water and its reflections, echo as the eye seeks out comparisons between the segmented frames and, before you know it, a mesmerizing spell is cast. Close up, shimmering impressionistic sections of Waitzkin’s photographs divulge her artistic training as a painter.
Waitzkin’s multiple frames and color spectra aggrandize the natural world in much the same way Warhol created icons out of soup cans. At once meticulous and playful, her imagery is an inventive combination of painterly impressionism, abstract expressionism and trippy pop art, with a signature all its own. Big, exciting and unapologetically optimistic, Waitzkin’s photographs are deeply intricate explorations with a refreshingly original viewpoint.
There will be an artist reception and talk TONIGHT, Thursday, February 2nd, 2017 from 5:30 – 7:30pm in The Paul Dietrich Gallery at Cambridge Seven Associates, located on the 5th floor at 1050 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA.
For directions and more information about this show, go to: https://c7a.com/about
Feature Image: “Goose Pond (Yellow), 2017” (detail) from the series Water/Reflections by Ellen Waitzkin (courtesy of the artist).