artist statement -
Portraits and Other Disclosures

In 1978 I received a grant to produce a series of mural-size photographs, Portraits, that would be a traveling exhibition with an accompanying catalog. Instead of producing a traditional catalog, I wanted to make more of an artist’s book that would combine images of the large-scale portraits with two concurrent series.  Secrets was a series of 18” x 24” hand colored photographs with subject matter closely related to Portraits.  Cloud Reading for Pilots: Disclosures was a series of 20” x 24” hand colored photographs that were shot on a copy stand using found images from books, magazines and my growing archive that would soon constitute a personal image bank.  See Probability and Circumstances.

Rather than being grounded in traditional photography or hyper-real painting influenced by realism, my work at this time was about artifice and notation where photography, painting, drawing and writing existed independently within the work. I was not attempting to fully integrate these areas into an illusionistic whole, and in this sense, the work references map making, diaries, photographic evidence and conceptual frameworks.

The challenge was to bring these different ideas, media and bodies of work into one cohesive exhibition and book. My solution was to produce a “notebook” of images, writing, drawings and diagrams that explored some of the more conceptual and humorous aspects of my work.