Gloria Graham captures an array of unexpected hues of color in cast shadows while photographing her sketches and notes on scraps of paper at 3 PM outdoors in natural light on a clear day in New Mexico. This exhibition reads as pictures and objects as Graham transforms both material and process while documenting a natural phenomenon.
The new photographs by Gloria Graham are both documentary and pure abstraction. The images themselves read as a montage of drawings, each ungrounded and floating in space with eerie cast shadows in an amazing range of blue and gray colors. Graham saves her ideas as sketches and notes on paper and then revisits them, either to incorporate them into a work of art or burn them at the end of the year in a performative ritual, capturing the fading memory of each on film—the latter, the subject of another upcoming exhibition. In this particular body of work, Graham photographed each note and drawing at 3 PM, outdoors on a clear day in New Mexico. The outcome was a chronicling of an array of hues in the cast shadows, resulting from the many different chemical elements naturally occurring in the air and their differential interaction with wavelengths of light at a specific time of day. Graham has always focused on the most reductive and elemental of objects and situations and like John Cage, opens herself up to new experiences and finds the most interesting while observing the most common. Beyond the subject matter and process, this new work does not read as photography, as Graham presents this art in a square format mounted on raised panels with a waxed surface to avoid the glare from glass. Thus, they have both a picture and object quality that further ads to the experience as Graham transforms both process and object in this new work.
Gloria Graham’s art making practice explores interactions at the molecular, physical and metaphysical levels with a focus on ephemera and the ethereal captured through her camera lens and drawings. She has had many solo exhibitions and her artwork included in numerous group exhibitions in New York, Los Angeles, Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Houston, Marfa, Buffalo, Denver, Verona, IT, Lugano, Switzerland and Japan. Her artwork is included in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art (NY), The Lannan Foundation, The Broida Foundation, Albright Knox Art Gallery (Buffalo, NY), Museum of Fine Arts (Houston, TX), The Panza Collection, Museo Cantonale d’ Arte (Lugano, Switzerland), Harwood Museum of Art (Taos, NM), Denver Art Museum (CO), Roswell Museum and Art Center (NM), North Dakota Museum of Art (Grand Forks, ND), Albuquerque Museum (NM) and Museum of Fine Arts (Santa Fe, NM). Graham studied at U. California, Berkeley and Baylor University with graduate studies at U. Wisconsin and U. New Mexico. She lives and works in New Mexico.