|Biography from Wiford Gallery:|
|Jack Perno received his Bachelor of Fine Art from Kansas City Art
Institute and then spent many years as a professional commercial
photographer. After a long career, he turned his attentions and
focus to fine art photography. In 2004 he won the 5th
International Polaroid Competition.|
In the last few years he has worked with emulsion lifts using an 8x10 Sinar Polaroid Camera.
of shooting on negative stock and then projecting the image onto the
sheet of the Polaroid film, Perno plays on the artistic edge of by
shooting directly onto 10 X 8 sheets of Polaroid, trying several shots
until he gets the right one ready for an emulsion lift. Emulsion
lifting is a process performed by scalding the emulsion from its
backing and transferring it to an alternate substrate of 300lb.
Fabriano soft press watercolor paper. Only one original is
created with 2-3 prints constructed from each theme.
on content before technique. Rather than select a shot from a
collection of acquired shots, Perno has the idea develop first and then
shoots specifically in order to release the concept he has imagined.
Perno uses an underlying theme of beauty encrypted into the portraits
combined with an absence of comfortable realism. By structuring ideas
and creating imagined or mythical creatures, people, or story lines,
his material can provide multiple interpretations.
for natural processes in his work. Rather than manipulate the
emulsion lift once it has come from the water, he uses the water to
flow in the direction it needs in order to direct the outcome.
This emulsion lift technique has no guarantees that what is conceived
in the mind will be achieved on the photographed sheet. It may
take a few minutes for the desired effect to appear, or it may take
several hours and photos later.
Once he does have the artistic
effect he wants, the photograph takes days to dry on absorbent
paper. Three to four days later, the paper gently draws out the
moisture resulting in the final image.
Jack Perno is so
connected to his own work that he is hesitant to let them go. "I do put
a price on them," he says, "and they are a bit expensive because only
one of each exists." Perno's concern is valid about the peel apart
large format film that he embraces. It will unfortunately follow in the
footsteps of other lost art forms. Polaroid will cease making the film
in 2008 for this type of photography process. Meanwhile, Perno uses his
time and resources available to create these works of art.
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