âEss' images often have a dreamy subterranean quality--part wonder and part menace--as if culled directly from the subconscious.â
--Gregory Volk, ARTnews
I Am Not This Body investigates primary, personal experience and relies upon the viewer's imagination and memories. Barbara Ess is renowned for her accomplished use of the pinhole camera and her effort to âphotograph what cannot be photographed.â Ess' is a conscious quest to explore what she calls âambiguous perceptual boundaries: between people, between the self and the not self, between in here and out there.â In her view, âreality... includes a perceiver, who has memories, thoughts, desires, emotions--[which] a normal camera tends to omit.â The strange and affecting images she coaxes from this primitive camera manage to evoke the sublime and the impossible, the textures of desire and loss.
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