Title: “Light & Shadow – Photo Muses”
Location: Cafe Trio Main Dining Room
More on Artist Kirk Decker: Click here
Description: New Art Show on Display in the Main Dining Room. Please stop in and enjoy Kirk Decker’s work, and as always if you fall in love with a piece it is all for sale!
Start Date: 7/24/18
See Below for Artist Statement and Biography:
Kirk Decker firstname.lastname@example.org
I use Film, Digital, and Infrared cameras in my photography.
When I use Film I’m not looking for some sort of Ultimate Quality in film. I’m looking for an aesthetic quality that incorporates the Japanese ideas of beauty as a part of impermanence and imperfection. I embrace film now, for the very qualities that when we shot film (back then) were considered qualities to be avoided. Shooting With Film is about the realization that perfection is not beauty and that it is our “flaws” that make us beautiful; realizing that our censoring has been self-censoring, all our restraints and hesitations have been self imposed based on our misconceptions of what we see in ourselves. It is about being beautiful in the moment now, never waiting to be beautiful later. The Digital cameras that I use excel at recording the surface of things,: a person’s face for a passport, a flower for a catalog, the facade of a building. While these cameras can easily make a perfect surface image, these images frequently add up to something that is less than the object portrayed. The best photography is not a literal description of a surface already seen and known. The best images are metaphors that evoke images of things unseen; love, strength, loss, struggle, change. These images that see past the surface of the thing — person, flower, building — are the images I want to create.
Infrared is a spectrum of light that is below the range of light that the human eye can see. In a sense, I’m making images with invisible light. Photographing in infrared, making images with unseen light is a way for me to explore the idea that “One should not only photograph things for what they are but for what else they are.” In all the mediums that I use, I’m looking for a complex deeper beauty that’s frequently hidden until light & shadow, place & time, and, fleeting expression suddenly, unexpectedly come together for a few moments to be a muse pointing towards that beauty.
Biography: Kirk Decker is an Artist INC Fellow and a juried member of the Northland Exposure Artists Gallery and Best of Missouri Hands Artists Association. He is an active member in the Kansas City Artists Coalition and the Kansas City Society for Contemporary Photography. Kirk’s photography has been published in Black & White Magazine, Missouri Arts Monthly, Professional Photographers of America Magazine, and is in the permanent collection of the Professional Photographers of America. His photography can be seen at www.KirkDecker.com and www.ShootingWithFilm.com. He is on Instagram as KirkDeckerPhoto and ShootingWithFilm.
When I was 12, my aunt let me look through her professional camera. My aunt lived in New York city and frequently traveled to Europe to take photographs. I was a Kansas farm kid; her camera was the most sophisticated gadget I’d ever seen. Her life seemed very glamorous. Perhaps if I got a fancy camera, I could have a glamorous life as well. Being a farm kid, I enrolled in 4H which is a program where farm kids learn arts, and crafts and how to butcher livestock. I got really lucky. My 4H photo teacher had a nice darkroom. In the darkroom I lost interest in the camera as a gadget and fell in love with making images. I read about a photographer, Edward Weston and the daybooks he kept in the early 1900s. I got volume one and read it until it fell apart. His writing captivated me. He had been a well known commercial photographer, but now he’s on a new path and not only is he redefining who he is, he is redefining the aesthetics of photography. The photographers I admired were photographing things that could be labeled with simple words such as water, mountain, vegetable. And yet they were making images they went beyond simple words and stood alone on their own as art defying simple explanations. Edward Weston wrote that he saw no reason for recording the obvious. Minor White, another photographer, said, the while the camera is very good for recording what things are. It’s even better at recording what else things are. The photographers I admired weren’t interested in simple photographs of the obvious. They wanted to go deeper into the what else of life. No one is sure where the path they take will lead, but as an artist you have to be honest about what moves you, and be willing to go down those paths. The things that moves me are the quiet things hiding behind the obvious. For me this means to be to be open and ready to respond to whatever the world offers to me. And what the world has to offer goes beyond what I could have imagined on my own.