Monday, April 25, 2011

David Alvarez reviews Greg Mettler

Greg Mettler

Greg Mettler is a photographic artist I found under the 'spotlight' section of Black and White magazine during the summer of last year. His beautiful, yet somehow eerie, photographic images begin to push the boundaries between painting and photography. Mettler's creates surreal photographic compositions that mimic the expressive brushstrokes found in painting. To accomplish this, he hand paints photographic -emulsion on either canvas or wood before exposing his photograph.

Although his process does reference painting, as seen in the visualization of the artist hand in the expressive application of the photo-emulsion, it doesn't really break away from the physical aspects of photography past that; it's still just photographic medium. The application of the emulsion with long brush strokes across the entirety of his compositions , in my opinion, does however seem to change the content of his images. For example the portrait of the women pictured in the image on the right above (Shallows) might just become another boring portrait without this process. Using his photo-emulsion practice, however, Mettler transforms this ordinary portrait into an extraordinarily disquieting photograph of a women being consumed by the atmosphere that surrounds her.

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