TWELVE: Small Wonders, Viewpoint’s sixth annual December juried show, features small works by photographers from throughout Northern California and across the country. From over 500 entries, juror Daniel Kasser, a noted photographer and Professor of Art at University of the Pacific, selected nearly 100 images by over 60 photographers. While all prints are no larger than 36 square inches, they represent an extraordinary range of photographic approaches. Subjects include still lifes, abstracts, cityscapes, portraits, composites, and landscapes. Print types range from nineteenth-century processes such as tintypes, ambrotypes, and salt prints; through twentieth-century techniques such as gelatin silver prints, platinum prints, and image transfers; to twenty-first-century cell phone captures and pigment inkjet prints.
The six photographs singled out for awards epitomize the diversity of the exhibit. Juror Danial Kasser chose Jim McMahen’s semi-abstract close-up, Curtain Pull, for the First Place award. Donald Satterlee’s Grain Tower, a black-and-white celebration of rural architecture, won the Second Place award, and the Third Place award went to Kansas photographer Thomas A. Gibson for The Chimney Sweep, a digital print from an original ambrotype. Honorable Mention awards went to Mark Howell’s color study, Theatre Wall, Roseville; Rick Murai’s surreal composite, Dangerous Journey; and Dianne Poinski’s gently-colored still life, Poppy.
In recognition of the gift-giving season, Viewpoint visitors who purchase prints from TWELVE: Small Wonders will be able to take them away immediately, rather than waiting until the end of the exhibit in January.
Juror’s Statement by Daniel Kasser
In an era of big, over-saturated, over-sharpened color photography, it has been wonderful to revisit the legacy, lessons, and potential of the small print in the history of photography. This survey characterizes a diverse range of aesthetic/philosophical visions and image-making methods practiced among contemporary photographers. The works chosen for this exhibit reaffirm the compacted power of photography to embrace and communicate intimacy and mystery from artist to audience.
Jurors are always challenged when given a formidable body of artworks to judge. Viewing artworks online during the initial evaluation invites obstacles that only experience and instinct can hope to overcome. My goal for this exhibition was to distil and frame a representative selection of individuals who submitted five hundred photographs to TWELVE: Small Wonders. The full range of photographic printmaking processes and sensitivity to the relationship between image content and image scale among the entrants is remarkable. I was also impressed by several of the photographers’ desire to explore diverse forms and formats, stepping beyond the conventional frame of reference into the panorama and image sequence formats to support narrative and filmic possibilities left largely untouched for several decades.
This exhibition demonstrates a well-balanced offering of black-and-white and color photography. The poetic nuances and compositional integrity of these photographs are artfully complimented by the use of black-and-white. When the equivalent nuances were pursued in color, I was attracted to the photographers who demonstrate mastery of color, respect for the harmony, hue, and saturation — photographers who step beyond a passive approach to the medium.
November 2, 2014
Jim McMahen, Curtain Pull (First Place)
Donald Satterlee, Grain Tower (Second Place)
Thomas A. Gibson, The Chimney Sweep (Third Place)
Mark Howell, Theatre Wall, Roseville (Honorable Mention)
Richard Murai, Dangerous Journey (Honorable Mention)
Dianne Poinski, Poppy (Honorable Mention)
Note to photographers with images in this exhibit: All accepted images should be at the gallery by now. You may still download the prospectus here (278k PDF file) and you may still log in to EntryThingy here.