Friday, February 1, 2008

etsy shop: polaroidsandpinholes
listing: Marble motion no. 2 10x8 print
artist: Rowena Dugdale

PHOTOGRAMS! PHOTOGRAMS! PHOTOGRAMS! I love photograms and Rowena Dugdale does great justice for this artform from the darkroom. What's a photogram you ask? Rowena explains it well in her Etsy bio:

For the darkroom work, objects are placed onto photographic paper and exposed with light. It's an intensive, dark, claustrophobic and chemical working method but I love the physical and tactile way of working in contrast to the clean, dry and somewhat detached digital process sitting in front of my mac. Like the delicious static on a vinyl record, any dust specks, light leaks, torn edges or quirks are an integral and honest part of the process and character of this body of work and have been deliberately left in rather than airbrushed out.

Both Man Ray and László Moholy-Nagy, independent of each other, pioneered this field of cameraless photography in the 1920s. Man Ray self-absorbingly preferred to call the medium "rayographs" while Moholy-Nagy preferred the name "photogram". Moholy-Nagy is one of my favorite artists of all time. There have been many artists throughout time that have changed the way we look at light. Some of the artists on that short list include Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, and László Moholy-Nagy.

Rowena Dugdale proudly continues the experimental spirit left by Moholy-Nagy. She pushes the medium in new directions. Her marble photograms demonstrate this by "introducing movement into the static environment of the traditional photogram process", as Dugdale explains in the Etsy Description of the photogram shown above. Visit her website, polaroidsandpinholes.com and you'll more imaginative images including photographs from a Pringles tube she rigged. Simply brillant.

Her prints are filled with enchanting mystery and endless creative spirit. polaroidsandpinholes is a true asset of the Etsy community. Etsy needs more artists like Rowena Dugdale.