The work of three photographers is being shown in the gallery at Maui Arts & Cultural Center, a three-fold exhibition gathered under the working title "Passion and Risk." Each photographer has a title for his or her own body of work, but the common thread that drew Schaefer Gallery Director Neida Bangerter to bring these works together in one space is an intriguing concept.
"Reviewing the photographers' works-in-progress," she stated, "I noticed they all shared a common thread of passion seen in the dedication of years to developing individual concepts based on some form of camera arts. They were also taking risks in their exploration of media through subject matter, physical challenges and social commentary."
Ed Goldstein, from Hawai'i Island, presents works under the title "America Hand-Made," which describes not only the theme, but the medium and subject matter. Ed uses real film photography--not digital--and presents loving images of hands and hand-held things: old tools, skate keys, baseball mitts, cameras. His passion is for the artifacts and processes of the past, and he brings these back to us in a way that reminds us of our tactile needs. The risk for him, however, lies with the precariousness of finding and using old materials: he scrounges for film, camera parts and chemicals for developing. Once shot and processed, there is no "un-do" button.
The concept of risk is clearly demonstrated by Bruna Stude, who includes underwater photographs of sharks in her exhibit, titled "71%" (referring to the amount of the Earth's surface that is covered by oceans). The photographs also show off her signature form of platinum palladium prints, a process that provides great tonal range.
Artist Miki Nitadori's passion is in looking at history through multigenerational and multiethnic imagery, taking risks with compositions that utilize a range of media--sometimes in unexpected combinations. She uses old photographs in montage with Japanese fabric patterns and travel papers to explore her theme: "Reflect."
Her own migratory path, from Asia to Hawai'i to Europe, provides rich material. "I moved to Maui when I was 11," she said. "It opened up a dialog within me about history, immigration and integration. My meeting with older generation Japanese and Japanese-Americans changed my life."
Through this exhibition, she hopes the audience will be able to view "what may be sleeping in the corners of every household" (as she refers to her 'artifactual' material) "and revalue their own cultural heritage."
"Photography Passion & Risk" is on exhibit at the Schaefer International Gallery, now through July 21. The gallery is open Wednesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., as well as during Castle Theater events. There is no admission charge.