Gloria Lamson’s photos have been an intriguing addition to Le Fotografie. She plays with nature, but it’s not so much a manipulation as a subtle, thought-provoking rearrangement. Her images force the viewer to consider notions of natural and human-made beauty, and the possibilities for interaction between the two.
At first glance, String Circle on Leaves is jarring. The string seems an imposition, almost, albeit a pretty one. But I’ve done some careful pondering, and I think the string and leaves are a natural pairing, both visually and conceptually.
There are two levels of organization within the plant. On the micro level, we’ve got the neat, orderly parallel lines of the creases of the leaves. Very tidy. At the macro level, we’ve got the opposite—the tangled jumble of the leaves themselves, seemingly without order. These work together to emphasize different aspects of the mini string installation. The radial arrangement of the cotton appears organized and messy at once. The frayed, meandering string ends are in contrast with the orderly neatness of the veins within the leaves. And the large scale haphazard arrangement of the fronds function to push the careful weaving of the center to the visual forefront.
Lamson has done something very interesting with this installation. She’s essentially taken a processed bit of nature—the string having come from a cotton plant, of course—and laid it over a bit of “pure” nature. It’s a lovely and provocative take on a before and after shot, a lens through which to view the age-old dichotomy of humans and nature. She’s given us visual and symbolic layers that make for a fascinating romp through this issue.
Erin Weber Carlman
The Untrained Eye
About Erin Carlman Weber as “The Untrained Eye”
Erin Carlman Weber likes food so much that she tracked down and enrolled in a graduate program at Boston University that’s comprised entirely of talking, thinking and reading about food, with a liberal sprinkling of eating and cooking, too. What does that have to do with photography? Well, she also enjoys a good photograph every now and then, since one cannot live on food alone. (Or can you? Erin will have to check on that…) She is a freelance writer and a contributor to The Urban Grocer and Leite’s Culinaria and has been writing for Le Fotografie since October 2010. But I’m not sure how long we’re going to be able to keep calling her “The Untrained Eye” since she’s starting to get pretty good at writing about things that aren’t food.
Curator, Le Fotografie