For Immediate Release
Press Contact: Maureen “Mo” McFadden
BETWEEN SEER AND SEEN: ART+LOVE
A UNIQUE ART EXHIBITION
(Santa Barbara, CA) What happens when those who create art step across the line to become the subjects of the artwork? Find out when Mark Robert Halper’s photographic portraits of selected local artists gets a special and unique exhibition at the Santa Barbara Tennis Club for three weeks. BETWEEN SEER AND SEEN: ART+LOVE opens on Valentine’s Day Friday, Feb 14 and runs through March 7, 2014. Artists whose portraits will be on display have created original works of art – no larger than 8”x8” - to complement Halper’s iconic portraits. It took Halper seven trips and 24 days in 2012 to capture 71 Santa Barbara artists for his newest book, “Between Seer and Seen: Celebrating the Artists of Santa Barbara County.” The luscious coffee-table book has received great reviews from the public and critics alike.
In addition to Halper, many of the artists – a veritable who’s who in the local art world - who are in the book will be on hand for the reception at the Tennis Clubhouse. Purchase a book and get the artists to sign their portraits making the book that much more of a treasure for your library. Books will be available for sale @ $45, with 50% of the sale price being donated to the Santa Barbara Arts Fund Teen Mentorship Program. Halper will also have free limited edition posters available at the reception to sign as a memento of the event. ART + LOVE is a Second Friday event whose curator and artist, Susan Tibbles, is included in the book as well. In discussing the project, Halper stated, “I photographed 71 artists, then took the time with each one of them to get the best possible portrait I could. They are a great group of people who understand the creative process because it's their process as well.
I chose to include artists who’s work personally spoke to me, without regard to what point they were in their career.” When it came time to find the right place to photograph the subjects, Mark noted, “Artist's studios are a bit smaller, very often attached to homes. So one of the biggest challenges has been creating imagery that aims to be extraordinary in what are generally quite ordinary places.”
Be it the way in which an artist interprets the world around them to create a canvas, a photographer’s point of view on their portrait subject, or a visitor to a gallery discovering a connection with a particular piece of artwork, the heart of the creative process lies in the relationship ‘between seer and seen’.
All of the 71 artists Halper photographed were grateful to be included in the book that also has 14 still life images taken in the artist’s studios, which are accompanied by quotes from well-known artists and other creative people.
From the artists included in the book:
Peggy Ferris: “I think the book is going to bring to the artists an incredible memento of this period of time. Being able to look back on this chronicle, years down the road, and to just think about what this meant, and the amazing time we all spend together.”
Dan Levin: “Something I liked immediately about the way Mark worked was that he was very intuitive at times, not over-thinking a particular direction he was going in. It reminded me of my own work, I feel like I work with happy accidents, that’s what I call them. If something falls off the table, sometimes it's an improvement. You just have to go with it.”
Cynthia James: “The thing about Mark is lighting. I think he uses that Chiaroscuro - the dark and light - and he pulls out the life in the person.”
Pamela Benham: “I think Mark’s captured a kind of inner spirit of what makes an artist tick. The community I think will appreciate it, fellow artists will appreciate it, and quite simply we are just going to have to say thank you to Mark.”
SB Poet Laureate, Barry Spacks: “Mark took me out to lunch after the session. He said if we haven't had done that, he wouldn't have gotten the particular image because he continued to photograph while we were waiting for our lunch to be served. And he caught me, and said, “this is the one.” So there's this fun feeling of being with an expert who is willing to take 150 to 250, or however many shots he took, in so many places, and finally get the right one. I'm very impressed with him.” Spacks also wrote the forward to the book.
Virginia Johnstone: “When you're dealing with portraits of people, it's never about the beauty of an image, a person. You're not trying to make them look like a fashion model, or something pretty. You want to find the real person. How do you capture an honest moment? I think it's a job of a good photographer to find that in someone.” She continued, “So what you have here is someone who has decided to applaud the individuals who have a desire to express themselves. I'm so happy to see him celebrate this.”
This is Halper’s second book on Santa Barbara. In 2010, his “Sunlight and Water: Celebrating the Winemakers of Santa Barbara County” was released and received great reviews.
BEWEEN SEER AND SEEN: ART + LOVE will run at the Santa Barbara Tennis Club, located at 2375 Foothill Rd., Santa Barbara, CA 93105 from Feb 14 through March 7, 2014. Special Artists Reception is Friday, Feb. 14 from 5:30 – 7:30 pm. You can see the art at the Clubhouse, which is open 8am to 8 pm daily.
SB News Press called the photos "intimate, graceful, soft-focus portraits."
"Wonderfully iconic photographic portraits of Santa Barbara artists.” Santa Barbara Magazine
BetweenSeerAndSeen.com 2ndFridaysArt.com McFaddenPR.com