I’ve seemed to have been wrapped up in other things around town of late… Flamenco Hoy at City Center was an interesting performance, directed by Carlos Saura. A nice treat as a post Valentine Day gift. Jene got us center seats.
We celebrated his birthday at Knickerbockers last Friday and listened to a jazz combo. Although the music was mediocre, it is something he has wanted to do for a couple of years since realizing that they still had jazz on weekends.
There is always so much to do out and about in NYC but sometimes we don’t take advantage of all the Big Apple has to offer because we focus on our own little art world. Marketing oneself is a full time job and takes so much time away from creating. We enter juried competitions and exhibit where ever we are selected to show. Sometimes I think we are a little long in the tooth to be emerging artists but we had responsibilities at young ages and got caught up in the nonsense of providing food and shelter for the offspring we brought into the world. Our children (from different spouses) are adults so we are reinventing ourselves. Both of us took from our work experiences and parlayed those skills into our photography. Jene was in the entertainment industry, having toured with music and dance performers many years ago. With 2 Emmy’s for lighting on his shelf, his ability is very evident in his photography, as is his love of dance performers. He has been working on building a new website and it is coming along nicely, very nicely indeed. An artists’ work reflects so much of his/her personalities, views and outlook. He is powerful, strong, in your face but not in an intimidating way. His work invites you in for a closer look to see what lies beneath the surface. But enough about the man I love, take a look at his site and come to your own conclusions – make up your own stories from his images. Jene Youtt
We are 2 artists with the same mission – to give you a glimpse of how we see the world. My art, like me is subtle, the power unfurls in a quieter way, drawing you in for a closer look. I delve deep inside and try to let the beauty or turmoil surface in it’s own way. I capture that moment more than create it. The creation comes from how I see a person or an object more than setting up a scenario. In my photography sessions even with my granddaughters I create an ambiance, set the mood, the pace allowing them to evolve. Sometimes we get silly, sometimes we are pensive. When I first starting shooting again, I did self portraits, I wanted my inner feelings to be seen. I was introspective, bordering on melancholy because my life as I had known it was changing. I was an empty nester but with that came a new found freedom. A personal liberation, hauntingly nostalgic. I began a portraiture series called Inner Sanctum and later included images of models that I came across. The first was from a meet-up group of photographers that Jene was a part of, then I searched for a few models of my own choosing. Emmanuel Fremin is a high fashion and art model who was a joy to work with. His brooding good looks suited my vision and we became friends. Shawna is an actress/model and we spent 2 hours shooting and then 2 hours talking about love and life.
Today is the deadline for a juried competition – Michael H Kellicutt International Juried Show – “Through the lens: Inspiration or Desperation” and when I came upon the CL call for artists I thought it would be perfect for images from my Inner Sanctum body of work. (Jene called me when he came across the listing too)
Here are the 5 images I submitted, only the jurors know what they are looking for so wish me luck.
It certainly would be nice to be recognized by curators, collectors etc, appreciated for what I do and what story I try to start in my visual storybook; but I do what I do because I love it. It’s my way of expressing myself, how I feel, how I see things and it’s the connecting to others that has lead me on this path.
I’ve been revamping my website – a new one through Photoshelter – eventually will change my name – Mary Durante (Youtt)