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ambropoetica View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: AltPhoto Source Update
    Posted: 27 January 2006 at 20:11
To all... I wish to apologize for the tenor of some of my remarks
regarding my recent posts, especially the feces attributions. I will admit to
being a hot head of sorts... that being said, I remain unmoved by most of
the works discussed. My comments are meant to improve and contribute
to discourse of the art and craft we persue.

My thanks to Quinn for providing the forum from which we all have the
opportunity to learn.

best,
steve
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 January 2006 at 19:27
Originally posted by smieglitz

I'll put in a plug here for the Alt Photo Source chemistry. I just used some Keystone positive collodion today for the first time since I obtained it from Gerald a few months ago. It was really nice, a bit thicker than what I've used previously, and the image color was redder than I've had result before, but these were all plusses as far as I'm concerned. I managed to do a few ruby ambrotypes on black glass today and will post some scans tomorrow if possible.

I'll be ordering some more of this stuff as soon as you guys formally launch the business.


Thanks Joe, I appreciate that plug, moreover, I'm happy that you like the Collodion.

My plan is to offer different "flavors" of Collodion depending on what people like. That happens to be the "Q" formula that you're using. It's what I use about 90% of the time. I go for warmer tones (reds/yellow) and the Collodion plays a big role in that.

Also, viscosity... I mentioned that I'm playing with the solvents, I'll be curious to know if others like how that flavor "flows" on a plate... did you find you had more control? Did you get better pours? What about the set point difference from what you have used before?

Looking forward to seeing your images!!

Regards,
Quinn Jacobson
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 January 2006 at 19:01
I'll put in a plug here for the Alt Photo Source chemistry. I just used some Keystone positive collodion today for the first time since I obtained it from Gerald a few months ago. It was really nice, a bit thicker than what I've used previously, and the image color was redder than I've had result before, but these were all plusses as far as I'm concerned. I managed to do a few ruby ambrotypes on black glass today and will post some scans tomorrow if possible.

I'll be ordering some more of this stuff as soon as you guys formally launch the business.

As far as Sally Mann, I'm a big fan although I'll say many of the recent images from that series didn't do anything for me and, like others, I question the critical response to them. However, I found a few very moving and suspect the albumen prints in person would have a much greater appeal than the small web pics.

I suspect a great deal of intent is present in what appears to be haphazard. She knows what she is doing, is very talented, and she is playing her cards well.

I wonder what her favorite images are from her very diverse evolution?

Just yesterday I found this link in another forum to an image of her by Karen Kuehn. I got a grin out of it.

Portrait of Sally Mann on Karen Kuehn's website

Joe

Edited by smieglitz
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 January 2006 at 10:17
Originally posted by james munoz

Why is it that there is always someone willing to
trash another artist (that's if your an artist and not a hobbiest)?


I find the distinction between "artist" and "hobbyist" distasteful. What are
their distinguishing characteristics? This sounds like critic-speak to me;
categorizing the newly-fallen. Can we disregard the work and opinions of
others because they are "just hobbyists"?

I am a huge fan of Mann, although I was not so moved by "Last
Measure" as her other work. That said, I don't think it a
bad thing to criticize the work of others. It can be constructive...

Quinn, sorry to hear about your red-tape, I am sure it will all be over
soon enough.

Edited by JGMotamedi
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 18:03
Gee whiz..... I guess I forgot to set my sack 'o' you know what on fire so I
could stamp it out.

Since we're getting all creamy regarding Ms. Mann's work may I
comment??? It's just my opinion folks, a tale of sound and fury, signifying
nothing... I'm not a great critic walking along shooting the dead, (book
idea?); nor am I a great artist, now apparently hobbist, trashing the work
of a famous person that somehow needs the protection of adoring fans
that have had the priviledge so as to comment on work experience.

Do my homework??? So I may gush more forthrightly??? I use my heart
and my little mind thank you very much. To me, the only thing missing
was that the plate wasn't dropped for "effect".

Is the work about transition of time... loss... unconscious memory...???

Am I envious??? Certainly! Who wouldn't be???

My personal and obiviously un-art/hobbist informed opinion is that the
work presented whenever... was done so in a calculated manner to
precede the resurgance of Wet Plate. I feel success earned has
responsibility; I just don't see it. She no doubt deserves it all and has
earned such through hard work; great for her. I'm not attacking the
person.

I   just don't like it. It feels hollow and disingenuous. But then it's just
an opinion... and I didn't even get to the marketing.

cheers,
s.

Edited by ambropoetica
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 12:59

Not exactly sure how the chemical red tape theme shifted to Mann, then on to gallery culture bashing. ha ha!

However, Quinn... I sincerely hope you can cut through the red stuff and get those kits going. I've never made a wet plate exposure, but I will this year...and I hope to do it with one of your kits.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 12:58
I like Sally Mann's previous work - I agree that it is powerful
and that she marches to a different drummer. When I said her
work was provocative I was referring to reviews at the time not my
personal opinion.

Her last images just did not do it for me.

In regard to the question previous of what images I like -
Many of the images on this site I consider well done - I especially
like the portraits and the combination gum images.

Enough said of this topic - lets get back to collodion.

john


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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 12:51

Originally posted by Kerik


You can't blame the bullshiite hype on Sally. It's part and parcel of the gallery business.


That's exactly my point.

I (and I hope) think Mann's intention(s) are solid and real, it's the inherent sh*te that surrounds people like her (created mostly by others) that viewers can't get through, nor do they want to.

All artists are not genuine in that sense; some help create and even encourage the esoteric hype to see if people will buy into it. It's hard to tell the difference sometimes.

Regardless of the "product", intention and context are king for me.

Regards,
Quinn Jacobson
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 12:04
Kerik,
Can't remember who said it about critics:

"Critics are the ones who go out on the battle field after the fighting is over
and shoot the wounded"
James Munoz
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 11:52
Originally posted by james munoz

Why is it that there is always someone willing to trash another artist (that's if your an artist and not a hobbiest)?
First of all I've worked (assisted) for Sally in the past and have nothing but good things to say about her and her work. If you had a chance to view the work (Last measure) in person I bet you all would think different! And last, Steve the show was three years ago, do your homework.


I'm not trying to trash her as a person, but this Last measure work of hers just doesn't cut it with me at all.  Would it change if I saw the work in person? I don't know.  I have not seen any of her other work.  Could I do better? No, since I've never tried the process (though I would like to at some point).
Diane :)
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 11:43
(Thank you, James).

Yes, Sally's wetplate techniques are 'bad' by traditional standards. But, you can bet she wants it that way. These are not mistakes, even if they look like it to the casual observer.

You can't blame the bullshiite hype on Sally. It's part and parcel of the gallery business. Most serious collectors and admirers of art see right through that crap. I could care less what the guy in the black turtleneck with too much mousse in his hair has to say about the work (sorry for stereotyping 'gallerists'). I just roll my eyes and then look at the pictures and make my own decisions.
Kerik Kouklis
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www.kerik.com
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 11:25

I've always respected and admired Sally Mann's work. I have mixed emotions about her wet plate work. Conceptually, I understand where she's going with the photographs (I think) and the images of her dog (well, the dug up bones) in her book, "What Remains" are powerful. Her whole approach to that work is powerful and I have great respect for her insight and her ability to contextualize and express on that topic.

As far as her technical abilities in wet plate, I think she'll even admit they aren't the best. In her defense, I think she wants it that way. She is saying something with that approach and that "style" of wet plate work. I think it's valid. As James said, you probably would have had to been there to fully appreciate/understand this body of work.

On the other side of the coin, I do think there is a lot of political and marketing bullsh*t swirling around known names and their work. It puts them, and in essence, their work at risk (in my opinion).

For example, some of our small group here has already dismissed this work because of that bullsh*t (there is some validity there too). If you were to stumble across this work on a web site of an unknown artist, like one of us, you may give it a chance. You may still not like it, but you would be more apt to give it a chance. The "write-off" factor would be less of an influence with an unknown artist. Work needs to be seen and understood in context. A lot of viewers, because of the name and the marketing hype, will immediately dismiss work like this.

 

I think it's unfortunate that people get "famous" in the art world. I believe in the long run, they loose a lot of their audience because of the notion that anything they do is great. Some of the work they do, like this work, is very difficult for a lot of people to get their head around and the “hype” makes it even more difficult.

With that said, there is a lot of art out there, the question is; is it good art? I leave that for each person to decide.

Regards,
Quinn Jacobson
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 11:20
Kerik,
You being an artist (an I love your work) couldn't have said it better, So
true...

James
James Munoz
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 11:14
John,
Did you see the show? Or just images on a the web?
James Munoz
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 11:13
James - I'm with you on this. Seems like many artists are all-too-eager to bash the work of others who are successful. I've been a Mann fan since her earliest Immediate Family work. To me, calling those images "provocative" says more about the viewer than the maker.

No, I don't love everything she does. These Last Measure images don't do it for me - although I'm sure they would have a different impact as large prints in person rather than small web images.

The images in the book What Remains (the decaying bodies) at first horrified me. I bought the book, looked at it once and put it on the shelf for a year. When I brought it out for a second viewing, I became facinated and now find the work very compelling. Art is not always pretty.

Her Motherland series has some images in film and collodion that practically bring tears to my eyes. There are others that just make me shrug.

The bottom line for me is that she is a true and original artist following her own voice. Her commercial success has made that easier for her, but I have a lot of respect that she has moved on and is not endlessly repeating the same formula - a trap that many successful artists have fallen into. Maybe trap isn't the right word...

But, for me, Sally rocks!!
Kerik Kouklis
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 January 2006 at 11:11
I believe you should at least be able to see the image.

john
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