Photo Set Edition One brings Santa Fe’s diverse contemporary photography community into focus
September 28, 2016, 12:00 am
By Jordan Eddy
“Photography is kind of an isolating field,” says Jerry Courvoisier. “You’re always in your own world and trying to produce your work.” He lounges on an easy chair in the front room of Edition One, a concept gallery for contemporary photography hidden in the upper reaches of Canyon Road. Pilar Law, who founded the space last December and runs it with her business partner Mark Berndt, nods in agreement from a nearby sofa. “I think we can re-coin the phrase ‘it’s like herding cats,’” she says. “It’s like herding photographers!”
On the walls hang 40 prints by a diverse group of local artists that Courvoisier united for his traveling exhibition, 20 New Mexico Photographers. He’s been a prominent member of Santa Fe’s photography scene for over 25 years, which is almost as long as Law has been away from New Mexico. She grew up in Santa Fe, but has lived in California for the better part of the past three decades. This show, with its rich cross section of area photographers, has sparked a discussion between the veteran and the newcomer about what it takes to strengthen their community in rapidly changing times.
“I wanted to create a project that was specific to New Mexico,” Courvoisier says. “The exhibition and the edition had to be unique, so I started with the square.” All of the images in the series are in a square format, and about 70 percent of them were originally shot on film. “I asked these photographers to look back through their huge archives,” he continues. “I’m mining information from the past, because it’s beautiful and really quite interesting.” Courvoisier thinks of photographs as “windows in time and space,” and these works deftly chronicle almost a century of photographic output in New Mexico.
The show includes crisp black-and-white photographs by Elliott McDowell and Alan Ross, who worked alongside Ansel Adams. Seasoned photojournalists Jane Phillips and Jack Parsons appear in the show, along with celebrated fine art photographers Lenny Foster and Tony O’Brien. Many of the participating artists are in their 50s, 60s and 70s, but Courvoisier also included a number of younger emerging photographers, including Jennifer Spelman and Rumi Vesselinova.
A mere sampling of the exhibit.
Moonrise Over Rolls Royce, 1978 - Fleetwood, New Mexico, 1976 © Elliott McDowell
This talented group of iconic and emerging New Mexico Photographers selected for this special project edition provides a wonderful range of provocative imagery. Each photographer in the exhibition has a unique view and the images are paired to emphasize the focus of a particular past project or complementary images that rep specific years, photographic style and artistic approach.
Bonnie Bishop, Tony Bonanno, Steve Fitch, Lenny Foster, David Michael Kennedy, Karen Kuehn, David Marks, Norman Mauskopf, Elliott McDowell, Walter Nelson, Tony O’Brien, Jack Parsons, Jane Phillips, Jay Ritter, Alan Ross, John Scanlan, Jennifer Schlesinger, Jennifer Spelman, Jim Stone, Rumi Vesselinova
Gallery Hours: Tuesday - Saturday 1-5pm