Lorna Bieber: Up Close and Personal
By Sandra Tyler, Editor-In-Chief
It’s not every day that I get to view in person works we feature in our magazine. So much of what we actually get to see is remotely, except for our first Selected Works exhibition last December, when I was graced to be in the physical presence of so much talent. In each issue, we do try our best to do justice to our artists’ works as to color and detail, but in the context of our digital pages, it’s difficult to convey actual scale, as in the works of Lorna Bieber.
Bieber happens to be exhibiting at the Zuccaire Gallery, local to where I’m based on Long Island. Karen Levitov, curator of Lorna Bieber: Traces, is the one who introduced me to these unusual works, as well as to their actual scale—which was hard to fully appreciate until Bieber herself was standing in front of “Houses”:
While “Houses” is comprised of individual 7″ x 11” prints, the entire work is a full 9 x 15 feet. And her perhaps largest work is “Eden”:
At the opening, Bieber explained to me the complex and unusual process behind these images. Rather than digitally manipulated—they were produced in the 1990s—the images originated from xeroxes. These xeroxes, and often ones cropped quite small evidently, she would have made into actual slides. Back then, film still predominated, and the final images were reproduced in an actual dark room setting.
In this exhibition, the only actual digital work is “Tapestry,” an inkjet print on canvas. Comprised of multiple very high resolution Photoshop files, there is a seamlessness to this work unlike in the earlier non-digital images:
Also included in the show are works from her Mural Series, gelatin silver prints, ones I found particularly moving such as “Three Birds” (50″x 65″). It’s in these works especially that you can appreciate the graininess of the original xeroxes, one that lends to the images a raw emotive beauty:
This exhibition at the Paul W. Zuccaire Gallery at Stony Brook University’s Staller Center for the Arts continues through December 18, 2016. If you can’t make it to the actual show, you can see more of these impressive and innovative works here.