Nine years ago I spent seven weeks as an artist-in-residence at AIR Vallauris, which is walking distance to the Mediterranean. One of the advantages of returning to a residency is that you already know where everything is; where to buy food, get your laundry done, and buy materials. You can hit the ground running.
When I first arrived in Vallauris I started photographing immediately. I knew that my eyes are freshest when I first land in a place and even after a day or two I can become visually immune to the environment.
I was looking for something very specific. I wanted my subjects to appear abstract, and I wanted them to have layered and visually ambiguous space.
That is not how things started for me in Vallauris. The first thing that caught my eye were the utility boxes that are inserted into the side of a building.
I went from that to the basketball court, to the crumbling walls between buildings. Most of these photographs I won’t print. They are an exploration of the place, but don’t meet the criteria I am seeking in my work.
In the eight years since I had last visited Vallauris much had changed. Vallauris was known as a ceramic center in France bolstered by the years that Picasso spent there working at Madoura. It still has a great ceramic museum and Picasso’s Chapel, but many of the great ceramicists, such as Collet and Derval, have passed away, and most of the ceramic studios that popped up around town have closed. Now many of the stores that carried their work are also closed. And this, finally, is where I found my subject.
It didn’t coalesce right away. I took dozens of photographs of empty store windows until I found just the quality I was looking for.
When Monet died, his step-daughter Blanche took over his home in Giverny. Once she died the place was passed to his son Michel, who had no interest in it, preferring to be on safari in Africa. Trees grew up in the large studio where some of his last paintings were...read more
It is no secret that the years following the Crash of "08 were a blood bath for many artists, but hey, it was a blood bath for most people. I've been around long enough to know that every time the market drops 2000 points I'm in for about two years of no sales. I know...read more
My Former Day Job — Slugging It Out with Mike Tyson, Cus D’Amato, Teddy Atlas and the Fighters at the Catskill Gym
“I never work with people who don’t work for themselves. Can’t trust them,” Cus declared. “You’re your own boss? OK, I’ll work with you.” Michael visited Cus D’Amato, the famous boxing trainer in Catskill, New York at the request of his German producer. He saw an...read more
Paintings by Pat Adams Gatherum of Quiddities: April 1 through June 18 "For sixty years Pat Adams has approached painting with an empiricist’s concern for the nature of visual form and the intimist’s sensibility that addresses the layered complexity of being. With...read more