Saturday, August 25, 2012

Horizons cont.

Inverted horizons

Since I often find myself going into the water to photograph, I've become interested in looking at the water line below the surface as an inverted horizon line. I researched Hiroshi Sugimoto for my first comparative analysis paper and I keep coming back to his Seascapes where he captured the horizon line above water. Here are a few initial samples working with the idea of an inverted horizon.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

New work: Horizons

I've been experimenting with long exposures photographing late at night. I keep coming back to the horizon line. I know it is the meeting point of air and water, but it is often difficult to make out clearly, to really SEE it. Vast, unknown, intriguing. I also like the idea of extending time using long shutters and having enough patience to make an image with very little light. The images are around 3-10 minutes each.

Artwork I'm looking at

1st comparative analysis paper is coming up due this month. I'm looking at the work of Richard Misrach and Hiroshi Sugimoto. In particular, I will be comparing the two photographs below.

1. Untitled
By Richard Misrach
 49 x 111 inches

2. Seascape: Sea of Japan
Hirsohi Sugimoto

Current Readings

The Sublime by Simon Morley

The American Technological Sublime by David E. Nye

Sunday, August 12, 2012

On Hawaiian Thought & Art

Quote by Meleanna Aluli Meyer
"The responsibility that comes with the making of art is profound in that we are challenged to envision with all of our senses, not only for ourselves, but for those past, present, and to come. Art is the most natural extension of self with Akua [living essence, spirit, god] , with the inner and outer, and to all things seen and unseen. By actively creating, we become stewards among many things... of nature, of our thoughts, hopes, and expressions, of community ethos, of cultural representations, histories, etc."

Recommended texts:
  • Cazimero, Momi, la T. D. J. De, and Manulani A. Meyer. Nā Maka Hou: New Visions : Contemporary Native Hawaiian Art. Honolulu: Honolulu Academy of Arts, 2001. 
  • Charlot, John. Chanting the Universe: Hawaiian Religious Culture. Hong Kong: Emphasis International, 1983.
  • Forbes, David W. Encounters with Paradise: Views of Hawaii and Its People, 1778-1941. Honolulu: Honolulu Academy of Arts, 1992.
  • Yoshihara, Lisa A. Collective Visions, 1967-1997: An Exhibition Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, Art in Public Places Program, Presented at the Honolulu Academy of Arts, September 3-October 12, 1997. Honolulu, Hawaii: The Foundation, 1997. 
Local artists I am interested in learning more about:
  • Maile Andrade
  • Ke'alaonaonapuahinano Campton
  • Herman Pi'ikea Clark
  • Kapulani Landgraf
  • Meala
  • Meleanna Aluli Meyer
  • Macario Timbal
  • Yvonne Cheng
  • Francis Harr
  • Anne Kapulani Landgraf
  • David Ulrich
  • Allyn Bromley
  • Tadashi Sato
  • Murray Turnbull
  • Keichi Kimura
  • Wayne Levin
  • Hiroki Morinoue
  • Mark Hamasaki
  • Jan Becket
  • John Wisnosky
  • Stan Tomita & Karen Kosasa
  • Paul Kodama
  • Franco Salmoiraghi
  • Alan Leitner
  • J. Halley Cox
  • Les Biller
  • Laura Ruby
  • Boone Morrison

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Mentor Meeting with David Ulrich

I just finished my first mentor meeting with David Ulrich ( Although David and I have known each other for a few years now, today marks our first official meeting with AIB’s mentor program. I am very fortunate to be working with David again and to also have an experienced mentor, educator, and artist living and working locally in Honolulu, HI.

I’m walking away from our first meeting with a number of ideas. David suggested a list of pertinent literature about Hawaiian contemporary art and philosophy that I will post soon. He mentioned the importance of recognizing my unique location here on Oahu – I am an artist/student living within a melting pot of both Western and Eastern philosophies. While I am engaged in an MFA program based on the east coast of the United States, I am living and working within a community in the Pacific influenced by a rich Polynesian and Hawaiian culture.  As I study the notion of sublime, it is important to acknowledge the very idea of sublime as a Western cultural construct. In relation to Hawaiian and Polynesian culture, the sublime is in fact embedded into every dimension of life. Thus, in an effort to better understand the sublime and how it relates to both the people and landscape of Hawaii AND my own approach to making artwork here, I need to read up on number of local literature and artists. I will be researching how other local artists look at, understand, work with, and portray the notion of sublime.

David had a chance to browse a book I am currently reading, Simon Morley’s “The Sublime.” An important quote by Morley in his introduction on the discourse of sublime reads, “Methodologically, the sublime may be invoked performatively in some texts, while at the other extreme it will be analyzed through the abstract and detached lens of philosophy. Several texts can clearly be located with a residually religious, mystical, or spiritual discourse, while others take a more sociological and even Marxist perspective in exploring the centrality of the concept of the sublime to postmodern culture as a whole. Some texts approach recent history as itself a sublime experience, while others address problems posed by science and technology. All these perspectives are deepened by the application of psychoanalytic theories, and by revisions of received knowledge and belief arising from feminist, ethnic, and non-Western critique. Ultimately, the sublime is an experience looking for context.” (21)

Morley acknowledges evolving understandings of the sublime, and most pertinent to my work (and location), he suggests “ethnic and non-Western critique” as important contributions to the discourse. This is where gaining a deeper understanding of Hawaiian and Polynesian cultures may come into play as approach the broad and massive topic of the sublime.

Morley concludes, “In the pre-modern period, this context [of the sublime] was mostly provided by religion. From around the Romantic era onwards, some forms of art took on this role. And more recently, spectacle and mass media have given the sublime a new if not unproblematic home. The sublime is an experience that can serve many interests; it is now for us to decided what it holds for the future.” (21)

Work-wise, David and I discussed the importance of staying open to multiple strains of thought and exploring many projects this fall… although it is already apparent that threads exist between ideas. Currently, I am looking at:
                Constructed/commercialized sublime in Hawaiian tourism industry
                The sublime (…broad and massive topic here but keeping this theme open for possibilities)
                Water & air experiments (& perhaps how these relate to sublime experiences)