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If you are unable to visit our gallery and would like to purchase photographs from this preview or other's in the gallery, please contact the gallery and call 585-271-2540.


Peter's Picks of the Month

October 8 - November 2, 2008

Peter Marr picked his favorite photos of the show
by the featured and guest photographers, here is how he described his choices:


All images copyright by the individual photographers

Sea and Sky by Bill Bernbeck

Sea and Sky
by Bill Bernbeck

Bill, one of the gallery’s founding partners, has given us a truly inspiring exhibition of prints that are exquisite in their content and presentation.   Although they are grouped so that they represent four separate themes, it is apparent that the common theme running through his images, is an expression of Bill’s true self, an inner response to the World around him.  Bill is a wonderful artistic observer and interpreter of the beauty of the World around us, and he has the marvelous ability to successfully communicate this to the viewer.   I just love the serenity, quietness and beauty in his images, especially so in his maritime scapes.  Such qualities are also very evident in the intricate delicacy of the “Early Snow on Aspens”, and his landscapes that go from the realistic to the near abstract. Of all of Bill’s exceptional prints, I have chosen one of my favorites to comment further on, namely, “Sea and Sky”.

Here we can see the artist’s love of the photographic landscape, and his love for the subject matter.  Although we only see light reflected from the landscape, and the landscape is never the same twice, we see in this image a fleeting moment that is captivating and inspiring, expressing the passage of time across the landscape with serene eloquence.  We see a spectacular collection of shapes and textures playing against one another, even in the delicate  traceries of the clouds in the sky.   The perpetual movement of the waves, so beautifully captured by the light caressing them, enhances the ethereal quality of the scene, and gives a wonderful sense of harmony with the gentle surf and the multitude of small structures in the sparkly sand.  This lovely image is filled with quiet emotion, conveying to the viewer a magical moment when the artist encountered nature, and captured for us such a serene and very moving image.  

Morning Sun by Nancy Guzauski

Morning Sun
by Nancy Guzauski

The East Gallery has an outstanding, poignant exhibition by Nancy Guzauski of haunting scenes from abandoned insane asylums.  Her graphic memorable images of broken down facilities, of rust, decay and isolation, powerfully symbolize the similar breakdowns, erosion and trauma in the minds of the mentally ill patients, who once were forced to exist, but not “live”, in these institutions.  The images of the rusting iron beds with their cold metal springs and rotting thin mattresses in particular, bring a high degree of sadness and disillusionment, that such asylums, even when they were new and “habitable”, were places of abuse, of negativity, of sadness and of anger.  I use the latter word to sum up ones’ feelings of why mentally ill patients were abandoned and mis-treated  long term in these institutions, with little hope of re-entering “normal” society, just left to rot and rust like the facilities that we see in Nancy’s dramatic and intense images.  Maybe the rays of light so beautifully captured in her “Morning Sun”, can lead us to believe that such insane asylums are no longer with us, and that the mentally ill are now cared for in more humane facilities, and that these tragic people are given the love, respect and dignity that they surely deserve.   All of us should give our sincere thanks and admiration to Nancy, for showing us these dramatic and thought provoking images.

Hope by Darlene Pruess

by Darlene Pruess

I particularly loved the four vignettes of life in La Habana, Cuba, from the dilapidated old green car, the scene in the market with the haunting desperate look on the face of the lady with the cane, to the alley scene with an undernourished man staring vacantly into space.  The fourth image, captioned as “Hope” sums up the starkness and isolation identified in these four prints. In “Hope”, the decay, dereliction, and neglect of the building is very evident, the worn steps lead to huge double doors, but the one side slightly open is barred with a metal gate.  With that background, the focus of the scene is of a man, sitting on the steps, with his head cradled in his arms.  Is this hope?, or is it despair?  The shaft of light on the lower steps does bring us some hope of better times ahead, but our anticipation is immediately dashed when we see the second most powerful element in the print.   In the large window we plainly see the head and shoulders of a woman, a window that is barred by strong metal shutters.   Of greatest significance, is the fact that the woman’s face is half-hidden by one of the metal vertical slats, bisecting her face so that we cannot see her expression, although her eyes are definitely fearful.  She seems isolated, a lost soul, along with the man on the steps, they seem to be in a world that has no place for them.  This haunting image of poverty and anguish has been beautifully and lovingly captured by the artist.   One is left totally saddened at a way of life that has little hope of change.


Image City Photography Gallery  ♦   722 University Avenue  ♦    Rochester, NY 14607 ♦ 585.271.2540
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