The Art Center is thrilled to present “In a Different Light,” featuring the work of five Willamette Valley photographers - Paul Barden, Rich Bergeman, Philip Coleman, Jack Larson, and Sandi O’Brien - who create landscape and architectural images using infrared photography.
Infrared photography captures the world in a way that is not visible to the naked eye. Although the wavelengths of infrared light are above the range that can be registered by the human eye, these wavelengths can be recorded with special black-and-white films or with converted digital imaging sensors. Plants, people, and animals reflect more infrared light than inorganic materials like water, rocks, and sky. As Rich Bergeman explains: “Infrared photography reflects a world quite different from what we’re used to seeing – at times creating surreal, dream-like images, and in other cases injecting a more subtle shift in tonalities.”
Rich Bergeman, also from Corvallis, exhibited his work at the Maude Kerns Art Center in 2011. He has been a fine art photographer for 30 years and has an extensive exhibition history throughout Oregon. Bergeman photographs abandoned homesteads, ghost towns, and places on the verge of disappearing.
Corvallis artist Paul Barden has been working with infrared-sensitive films since the early 1980s. He particularly enjoys photographing the natural landscape. Barden comments: “Human vision makes use of just a tiny fraction of the light radiation spectrum. There is so much more happening in our Universe for which we must invent technology to ‘see.’”
Philomath photographer Philip Coleman, who was trained as a scientist, takes pleasure in capturing the subtleties of both the natural and human-made world through his photographs. Having started with film photography many years ago, he now enjoys the extra control offered by digital cameras and the digital darkroom.
Corvallis artist Jack Larson has used the medium of photography to express his experiences in artistic form. Long attracted to the look of infrared photography, he says that his objective is more to express what he feels than what he actually sees.
Eugene photographer Sandi O’Brien, who has shown her work locally, has become enamored of infrared photography in recent years because of the magical quality it presents. She uses infrared film and digital infrared in her photos and appreciates the distinct qualities of each.