Muhammad Ali Mosque, Cairo, Egypt, 1989
“In Linda Connor’s photographs, even the humblest subjects assume a visual radiance. From the clarity of her portraits and landscapes to her sunlight printing technique, Connor’s body of work evokes a sense of other-worldly serenity.”
ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
Odyssey: The Photographs of Linda Connor reflects an artist’s pursuit of diverse and compelling subjects from around the world. Although she frequently focuses on devotional sites and monuments, Connor is also drawn to revealing the spirit embedded in everyday life. She is fascinated with photography’s relationship to time: her pictures present a compelling combination of timelessness and a palpable sense of the passage of time. Another core element in her work concerns the dynamic relationship between the natural world and the sacred; its sites, iconography, and philosophy. Odyssey includes some of Connor’s best-known images from the past three decades of her extensive work in India, Indonesia, Turkey, Cambodia, Egypt, Tibet and the American Southwest.
Odyssey perfectly marries Connor’s large format photographs from her extensive travels with prints she has created from nineteenth and early twentieth-century astronomical glass plates from the Lick Observatory. Connor uses a large-format view camera, which allows her to achieve remarkable clarity and rich detail. Her prints are created by direct contact of the 8x10-inch negative on silver gelatin printing-out paper, exposed and developed using sunlight. Toned and fixed with gold chloride, the prints have a warmth, luminosity, and delicacy seldom found in standard photographic printing.
Although Connor’s work has been widely exhibited and published, Odyssey provides a new way to experience these photographs, in artist-composed sequences that dislodge a sense of linear time or specific place. Connor instead gives viewers the space to bring themselves into the viewing process and experience their own odyssey.
ABOUT THE PHOTOGRAPHER
After studying with revered American photographers Harry Callahan and Aaron Siskind, Connor became a distinguished teacher at the San Francisco Art Institute, where she has taught since 1969. Odyssey is an especially comprehensive collection of work that spans thirty years of image making.
A Bay Area resident, Connor has been an active force in the photography community and an esteemed instructor at the San Francisco Art Institute for forty years. She has exhibited widely in the United States and abroad, and has been published in numerous books, journals and catalogues. Her work is held in major museum collections – including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Victoria & Albert Museum, London – and has been supported by Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, among other recognitions for fine-arts photography and education.
During the late 1990’s Connor began to photograph at the Lick Astronomical Observatory in San Jose, California. Here she explored a treasure trove of 19th and early 20th century glass negatives taken through what was, at the time, the world's largest telescope. She made prints using the sun printing process from some of those negatives, a number of which have been interwoven in her sequences to create a rich dialogue with her other images.
All photographs in the exhibition are courtesy of the artist. The exhibition tour is organized by Hal Fischer Associates, San Francisco.
|Mudra, Mindroling Monastery, Tibet, 1993||Prayer Flag and Chortens, Ladakh, India, 1988||Retreat, Lake Namtso, Tibet, 1993|
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