Blake Milteer

Light and Dark (2001 and 2017)

Light is a series of photograms made during my original darkroom work on Transitions (Millennium). It began as an intuitive response to the intensive printing process necessary to realise the Transitions images. The Light images are photograms, a cameraless process in which physical objects are placed on top of light-sensitive paper under light (in this case, light from an enlarger) producing an image in which shadows appear as bright shapes.

 

In its conception, Light was meant to be fun, serving as a relief to the technically-challenging printing of Transitions and as a conceptual counterpoint to its seriousness. With each new print, experimentation with different combinations of figures resulted in the suggestion of conversance and sometimes dissonance between them. 

 

Dark was completed more than fifteen years after Light and was made in response to the earlier series. If the Light images depend upon the flatness of shadows, then Dark emphasises substance and form. As with the Light series, these works are object-based, but a camera is employed to achieve images reflective of portraiture. They are nevertheless only as revealing as the apparition of a passerby in our peripheral vision – possibly familiar yet elusive.