Independent Press: Enchantment - Visions of the Natural World

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The Project Room @ Independent Project Press is pleased to announce the opening of "Enchantment: Visions of the Natural World” a sublime two person photography exhibition of recent work by Dania de Jonghe and Joe Profita. This exhibit offers a special opportunity to enjoy the synergistic fusion of masterful images by these two contemporary photographers. Each artist has mastered their own unique vision and methodology to express deeply meaningful and mysterious revelations of the natural world.

Dania and Joe met 5 years ago at a photographer’s rendezvous in a small town in New Mexico. They were both invited by a friend in common and were attending for the first time. This was an intimate group of photographers, fewer than 20, who gathered to share the work they are passionate about. Joe relates that his first response to Dania’s work was curiosity as to how she made her images. They appeared to be straight photographs but there was something mysterious going on. She had created a feeling of place for what she photographed… a combination of tones and focus that he found appealing. As it turns out Dania shoots both film and digital cameras where Joe shoots only film. Dania uses Photoshop to fine tune her images where Joe uses darkroom chemistry from the 19th and 20th centuries. What is interesting is that the images created have a similarity in aesthetic. It appears that they are both ‘enchanted by something’ and have chosen to take different paths to arrive at photographs that are clearly resonant with each other.

In speaking about her work Dania says “My work is a love song. A song to nature and to the world. I fall in love with what I see before me, and take the image and gently shape it until what I can see there is revealed to others as well. Then I pass it on and go on my way down the road to the next photograph.” Dania describes herself as an artist, trained in drawing and painting, who discovered photography in the mid 90's. It added a whole new way of seeing the world. “I have never looked back. Someone whose opinion I value highly, said of my work: ‘it provides an extraordinary glance into an ordinary place.’ I like that.”

Joe’s process involves his mobility and vision, the two human attributes he values the most. In Joe’s words, “I like to WALK around and LOOK at things. Photography has become my way of collecting visual moments. We live in a world that seems bent on destroying nearly every evidence of natural beauty. I don’t mean to say that everything that has a human influence is ugly…only that we have proven ourselves incapable of manipulating our surroundings in a manner that approaches what the Creator has done. I believe the natural world needs to be preserved as a link to our ‘past.’ Native peoples have a history of living in and exploiting a place without significantly altering its appearance. Natural beauty remains. I am drawn to these ‘unspoiled’ places… this may seem trite but I see giving up this sort of beauty ultimately will kill something within us as humans. I attempt to photograph these places in a way that shows their history and character…how they feel.”

Joe uses a variety of hand-coated printing methods -- cyanotype, platinum palladium, kallitype on a wide range of papers. These are all contact printing methods where the final print is the same size as the negative. He will try different methods until he gets something that looks “right.”

Come visit THE PROJECT ROOM @ Independent Project Press in beautiful downtown Bishop to experience an enchantment with the natural world presented by these two fine photographers. The exhibit begins on Saturday, June 15th, 2109 and runs through Saturday, August 10th, 2019.

During the June Moon Art Affair on Saturday, June 15th, Serrano Fine Art will also be open for a reception featuring new oil pastel paintings by Randy Smith, including an 18” x 24” oil pastel landscape of Cooney Lake. Randy will also be presenting a pastel painting demonstration between 6:00 and 7:00 PM. New plein air landscape paintings by local Western Landscape artist Frank Serrano will also be on display, along with unique original paintings by renowned artists Robert Clunie and Robert Wood. Serrano Fine Art is located at 156 S. Main Street in downtown Bishop. The gallery specializes in landscapes and Western themed paintings & sculpture of the Owens Valley and the Eastern Sierra.

THE PROJECT ROOM @ Independent Project Press is located at 186-A Willow Street, just one block east of Main Street, in downtown Bishop. 

Gallery hours are 11:00 - 3:00 on Saturdays, and by appointment during the week. 

Contact the gallery to make an appointment, at 760.873.3600 or bruce@independentprojectpress.com.

Curated by Bruce & Karen Licher, THE PROJECT ROOM hosts periodic exhibitions of artwork, photography, and installations reflecting the diverse creative talents to be found in and around the Eastern Sierras.