NB. To make sense of this work…get the image up on your computer, and walk back ten paces…then voila!
I’m bumping into more and more artists who choose photography to express their creativity. Mike Emmett is one such artist. His current exhibition, 32×32 at Healesville Contemporary Art Space is the result of many years of looking, photographing and ‘playing’ with images. He loves the narrative in photographs…he is looking for it all of the time. Several are woven into this exhibition. They include narratives of childhood memories, landscapes and nudes.
The process of creating these limited edition photographs is a ‘trade secret’. Suffice to say that he reduced each image to 32 squares of colour and tone across, by 32 squares down, hence the name.
He loves that the viewer needs to interact with the work physically, by walking back to find the best vantage point, where all of those 1024 squares begin to make sense.
He shares the exhibition with his colleague Bec Jones whose delicate detailed black and white photographs on handmade paper provide a great counterpoint to Mikes pared down images.
You’ll know by now that I’m fascinated by artists creative process. Here’s a description of Mike Emmett’s… As a very well known, successful local commercial photographer, Mike is required to take photographs according to the clients’ brief. He’s good at it. There’s no shortage of work but every time he goes out on a job he brings something home for himself…Often just one image that the client hasn’t asked for…one that has the creative potential an artist is always on the look out for. It keeps his creative ‘muscle’ alive and I’ll guarantee enhances his commercial work. The two photographs below exemplify this beautifully.
This wedding shot was one required by the client… (fabulous and broody thanks to the impending weather event)
Below is the shot that Mike took just for himself…The light fell naturally, illuminating the wedding rings that had been passed around for the guests to see. The body language of the couple had me immediately imagining their story. There’s a whole novel in that exquisitely realised photograph…the narrative that Mike is so passionately interested in.
Mike is a director of the well known Yarra Valley design agency, Red Fish Blue Fish Creative.
All work in this post is ©Mike Emmett and is published with the permission of the artist.
In addition to showcasing the work of local artists, Healesville Contemporary Art Space offers great food and coffee to the intrepid art lover. Go on… pop this exhibition in your diary marked…A Day In the Country…you know you want to!