Jackson Fine Art is excited to announce our fall exhibition of works by Masao Yamamoto and John Chiara, two artists whose techniques stretch the limits of photography, at once reverent to the medium’s traditions and defiant of its rules.
On the evening of Friday, September 18th, from 6-8 pm, we’ll hold our traditional opening reception to celebrate these exciting new bodies of work. On Saturday, September 19th at 11am, Masao Yamamoto and John Chiara will give talks about their work and process at Jackson Fine Art, followed by questions and refreshments with the artists.
Japanese photographer Masao Yamamoto (b. 1957) is known for his small silver gelatin prints that seek to individualize the photograph as a singular, precious object. His early series A Box of Ku and Nakazora are comprised of photographs meant to be handled and manipulated, with gold flecked surfaces and slight creases both evincing the life of the piece and making each iteration distinct from the next. Often described as “visual haikus,” these photographs can be displayed as a collection of harmonious objects or stand alone as individually powerful objects, their subjects at once minimal and spare and suggestive of a surreal and transcendent tone.
Our September exhibition will include an installation of new and classic work from A Box of Ku and Nakazora, as well as a selection of new work from Kawa=Flow, Yamamoto’s ongoing project of larger prints exploring “the world where we are and the world where we go in the future.” Unlike the earlier series, the photographs in Kawa=Flow are treated according to the conventions of fine art photography—handled with gloves, framed and presented as singular works of art.
Masao Yamamoto’s photographs are included in the collections of the Victoria & Albert Museum, London; the Philadelphia Museum of Art; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the International Center of Photography, New York; and the Sir Elton John Collection, among others. His monographs include Fujsan, é, Omizuao, Nakazora, and A Box of Ku.
Bay Area photographer John Chiara captures cityscapes and landscapes in a process that is part photography and part event, creating one-of-a-kind photographs in a variety of hand-built cameras. The largest of these cameras is a 50 x 80-inch field camera transported by the artist on the bed of a flatbed trailer. Once a location is selected, Chiara physically enters the camera, manipulating positive color photographic paper in near total darkness, using his hands to burn and dodge the image.
The resulting landscapes are evocative and layered, retaining traces of Chiara’s innovative technique—irregular edges, glimmers of the translucent tape used to affix the paper to the back wall of his trailer. With Mississippi, John has captured the sensuous setting of the Mississippi Delta in a series of photographs taken over an 18-month period in 2013-14. These introspective and unique prints emulate the hazy sluggishness of a Southern summer, their sun-scorched slow exposures punctuated by streaks of brilliant color and ethereal impressions of the places they interpret.
John Chiara received his B.F.A. in Photography from the University of Utah in 1995, and his M.F.A. in Photography from the California College of the Arts in 2004. He was an artist in residence at Crown Point Press, San Francisco (2006), Gallery Four, Baltimore (2010) and the Marin Headlands Center for the Arts (2010). In 2012, Chiara was one of 13 international artists whose work was included in the exhibition Crown Point Press at Fifty at the de Young Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. Chiara’s work is currently at the J. Paul Getty Museum as part of the renowned exhibition Light, Paper, Process: Reinventing Photography. He is represented by ROSE Gallery, Los Angeles, Haines Gallery, San Francisco, and Yossi Milo in New York.