Olivia Parker Cyclamen (from "Lost Objects portfolio)
Medium Silver print
Photo Date 1980c Print Date 1980
Dimensions 12-3/4 x 10-3/4 in. (324 x 273 mm)
Photo Country United States (USA)
Photographer Country United States (USA)
Contact Alex Novak and Marthe Smith
About This Image
Image size includes large black borders. Editioned 3/35, plus 4 APs, although most of the edition was apparently not fully realized. Photo is signed, titled, dated and numbered in pen by the artist on the recto of the print margin. After graduating from Wellesley College in 1963 with a degree in Art History, Olivia Parker began her career as a painter. She became intrigued with photography in 1970. Mostly self-taught, she usually constructs what she photographs in the studio. Her photographs are fundamentally still lifes inspired by those painted in the traditional Dutch, Flemish and Spanish 17th-century style, with their torn petals, sumptuous but imperfect fruit and improbable insects. Parker feels that photographic still lifes are still an open arena precisely because of those intrinsic qualities of this contemporary medium that distinguish it from painting. She feels that the objects she chooses to photograph, whether alive or dead, are all signs of life. She is drawn to the implication of visual edges: the swollen limits of a ripe pear touching a hard line or light downy feathers, confined by a metal grid. Her photographs ask viewers to continually reevaluate their meaning by never truly defining where the eye comes to rest. Olivia Parker has had more than 100 one-person exhibitions in the United States and abroad, and her work is represented in several major private, corporate and museum collections, including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House, Rochester. Three monographs of her work have been published: Signs of Life (Godine, 1978), Under the Looking Glass (New York Graphic Society, 1983), and Weighing the Planets (New York Graphic Society, 1987).
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