'Light' shines at KPC

Posted: Thursday, January 17, 2002

"Rarefied Light," a juried, statewide photography show on display at the Kenai Peninsula College Art Gallery, displays the varied techniques, mediums and subjects of several skilled Alaska photographers.

The show's 44 photographs and photographic mixed media pieces present viewers with a smorgasbord of pictures to look at -- everything from three-dimensional images to cosmetic surgery.

There are several black-and-white photographs in the show, including "Canyon, Driftwood," by Jim Barr of Anchorage. The picture is aptly named, showing a deep, narrow canyon with an out of place log wedged among the rocks at the bottom. The walls of the canyon are steep enough to make viewers wonder how the log got in there in the first place and how the photographer got in a position to take the picture without slipping and breaking his camera -- or worse.

The majority of the pictures are in color. Evan R. Steinhause of Anchorage used a decaying pile of shedded foliage that accumulated on a painted yellow line in a parking lot for the subject of "Parking Lot Leaves." The soggy pile retained some of the splendor of its fall color, which is enhanced by the dark blacktop background.

Some photographers chose to capture everyday images in their work. "Garbage In," by Dan Decker of Anchorage, is a close-up of a pile of black garbage bags with bright red ties crowning their tops like bows on Christmas presents.

Others chose to create more out-of-the-ordinary subjects, like Randy Brandon of Girdwood. His "Light Wraith" shows a woman wrapped in strings of lights. The picture is digitally enhanced to give the woman a glowing aura around her head and body.

"Road Hunting," by Kenneth R. Kollodge of Fairbanks, is a black-and-white photograph depicting a common sight along Alaska highways, a triangular moose crossing caution sign next to the road. Three bullet-sized holes surround the sign, adding extra meaning to the title.


"Keepsake," a mixed media piece by Wanda Seamster of Anchorage.

In "Defying Gravity," Karen Roush of Anchorage puts a graphic face -- her own -- on cosmetic surgery. The photograph shows a woman under the scalpel receiving a face lift around her eyes.

Most of the photographers in the show claim Anchorage or Fairbanks as home, but there was one Kenai Peninsula resident included. Marty S. Hapeman of Kenai has a mixed media piece titled "On a New Day." The piece is a series of collages and pictures with a story written on each picture that links them together.

"Rarefied Light" will be on display at the KPC gallery through Feb. 8. The gallery is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Fridays.

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