Imagine the ability to capture a moment through the eyes of the past, take the world as you see it today and preserve it with the ways of old.
Imagine the ability to capture a moment through the eyes of the past, take the world as you see it today and preserve it with the ways of old. At first glance, it appears the glossy ArtSpace on the Concourse at Chatswood has assembled a collection of antique photographs, possibly from a mysterious attic or an aged, forgotten studio to decorate its walls. Shadowy portraits, intimate festivities, botanical presses and shimmering coastal reflections glow back from clean white surfaces. But all is not as it seems.
Upon closer inspection, the pictures come alive with their own stories. Vintography is a series of contemporary photograph developed using vintage techniques. The resulting works are incredibly varied, with the photographer’s imagination transforming their images into multi layered works of art. Artist Kirsten Spry’s works, the whimsical Lucky Charm cyanotypes are in stark contrast to her sunny Sea Pool salt prints, and perfectly illustrate the diversity that can be achieved through the old development methods. The Lucky Charm bright blue images have a surreal, illustrative element that Kirsten herself best describes,” If you saw these images in a dream they would herald success of some kind. What you see in daily life imprints itself in your mind’s eye. I hope that by looking at these images, the image will reappear in your dreams, providing a lucky charm for future endeavours.” Awesome!
Looking at photographer Dave Jenkins’s tintype portraits is a trip itself, the little pictures glisten with a depth like portals into another dimension. No retro photo app filter could possibly recreate the abyssal shadows or flickering lights of the sage faces that stare right back into your eyes. This series looks to our fathers and grandfathers to share their wisdom and show the person behind the words. Spooky. But very cool.
The Hungary series by Tony Peri follows musicians, dancers and performers in concert, backstage and on the road, catching every swishing skirt, secret chuckle and fond embrace with his lens. The black and white photographs take you along for the ride through Eastern European culture, as told by Tony with these traditional performers. The man himself enlisted the help of his crew on opening night and the echoes still resonate in his work.
The fourth artist to complete Vintography is Jill Lacina, whose botanical prints take two very different directions with her wintry Snow series and pretty Forest for the Trees. Snow consists of translucent leaves and branches, simple and silent, with a Victorian Era feel; While Forest for the Trees is neon, graphic and I swear I want these pictures all over my walls, t- shirts and stationary thanks. Just putting it out there Jill…
Vintography is actually part of the Head On Photo Festival, with events around Sydney and in association with Vivid Festival. ArtSpace on The Concourse in Chatswood hosts Vintography from 22 May to 3 June, at 409 Victoria Ave, Chatswood. If you really, really like the photos and you have access to your rich great aunt’s credit card you can totally take the exhibit home with you, as all of the works are available for purchase, or if you’re cheap like me you can just stare at them all day. Add a little class with Vintography to your social calendar trashbags, this is one gig you can brag about to the boss. Until next week that is… xo