Formally trained in the biologic sciences and later as a physician in emergency medicine, it seems improbable that such a background would lend itself to creative expression of the human spirit. Nonetheless, when one considers a daily exposure to the human condition with its myriad complications in the confidential yet intense environment of the examination room it is not surprising at all, that myself and others, such as William Carlos Williams or Elliot Porter, would find comfort in the catharsis of expression that is art.

Like many other people who chose photography as a vehicle for expression, the landscape has been an important form of expression of my amazement of the world about us. Robert Adams said, 'the picture tells us as much about who is behind the camera as what is in front of it'. So, I hope you can sense the serenity of the water running to the sea at garrapata beach, feel the relaxation of walking through a mist enveloped woods in Sutro Heights, or experience the pleasure of watching the moon rise over a city scape. This is what I draw from the environment and why I love these places so much. They are places to retreat, reflect, regroup, and strengthen our inner souls. This is what I want my landscapes to evoke.

Yes, I too have a Moonrise (and a Sierra Landscape and a still life study of form in Rocks, Baker Beach). Though risking the inevitible criticism of imitation, I have to make my Moonrise, not out of a simplistic need to emulate the masters but because I saw and felt that particular scene. If my images evoke a similarity to Adams, or Weston, or Caponigro, I am in good company, even if unintentional.

Lately my interests have concentrated on the figure. One might logically expect someone with my background and experiences to record the human experience... the pain, suffering, and emotion of illness, or the drama of life and death

While developing my own approach to photographing the human figure it became clear to me that a fundamental force that motivates us to continue with our sometimes troubled existence is the simple beauty of the human form.

Just as in the scientific world, the most elegant discoveries are those that are the least complex. For me, this translates into simple images and neutral backgrounds that try to capture the subtle play of light on form. In some cases, this is best communicated through a crisp-edged, sharply-focused image. While in others, the softly luminous images tend to enhance attention to light and form while avoiding a distraction to study the 'person'.

Through these images, I hope to express a sensual appreciation for the human figure and allow the viewer to visually touch and appreciate the beauty of the human form.

About the Photographs

All the photographs are gelatin silver prints, and with few exceptions, taken with a 4 x 5 camera. The prints are processed archivally and mounted on acid free mounts. Print sizes range from 8x10 to 16x20. Most prints will accomodate these size ranges with a few exceptions (available on request).

Chris Barton's work has been published in several artistic publications and exhibited in galleries in San Francisco, Carmel, New Orleans, Chapel Hill and New York. Posters of his work (Fog, trees sutro heights and GG Bridge lands end) are published and sold through Graphique de France.

Retail Prices for the prints (gelatin silver prints) in editions limited to 50 each are:

8x10 $175.00
11x14 $250.00
16x20 $350.00

 

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