From Library Journal
Aperture expands its fine reputation with this unique work by photographers from New York at the Seeing with Photography collective, which has been active for over 15 years. Members have varying degrees of sight; one, for instance, says that she sees sunlight and fog. Using a Polaroid to create images by "painting with light" that is, with flashlights these artists produce work that is startlingly original and creative. Their hope is that through this work the sighted will both learn to appreciate their vision and become aware of the talents and self-expression of those whose vision is limited. The images are high-quality, mostly full-page portraits staged with intriguing backgrounds to represent the personality of each photographer. Throughout, faces are often highlighted. The interviews with the photographers add insight into their character and photographic goals, as do the brief biographies and portraits of the artists. The text is in large, easily legible print. Highly recommended for photography, special education, and general collections. Lynetta Alexander, Tennessee State Univ., Nashville
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
Shooting Blind: Photographs by the Visually Impaired gives us entry to another world-- a reality that is at once mysterious, evocative, and beautiful, arousing a blend of memories and emotions. The unique photographs are made by Seeing with Photography, a collective of photographers with varying degrees of visual impairment-- ranging from legal to complete blindness-- that has been active in New York City for over fifteen years. The group uses their cameras to explore the world and better understand themselves while creating luminous works of art.
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These compelling black-and-white images are made using an old technique called "painting with light," in which flashlights are used to illuminate the subjects over long exposures in complete darkness. Various tactile and audio cues are used while creating the image; sometimes an assistant will describe the surroundings for those with the most limited vision and help orient their cameras. Through close collaboration, the photographers achieve a result of striking imagery imbued with a charged and bristling energy, distinct from the ordinary.
The work represents the collective's response to the world, pushing the human form and creating novel translations-- at times ironic and extravagant. The photographic technique incorporates clashing areas of softness and sharpness, streakiness and luminous distortions, detail and confusion, symbolic of the group's shared visual loss.
Accompanying these richly surreal photographs are interviews with the photographers, shedding light on the motivations behind their work.