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Lisa M. Robinson's photography collection "Snowbound," currently on exhibit at the Klompching Gallery in Dumbo, might sound like an unwelcome concept in the middle of winter, but in a way, that is one of the points of her work: drawing attention to the uneasy relationship between people and aloof, frozen environments. The exhibition consists of 16 of Robinson's photographs taken between 2003 and 2007, all depicting snowy, barren landscapes with faint evidence of human presence that works conversely to imply our non-presence in these inhospitable but beautiful landscapes. A Jackson Heights resident and native of Savannah, Ga., Robinson discovered her love for the photographic medium toward the end of a five-year stay in Argentina, when she realized that she didn't have any photographs of the country and spent the rest of her stay taking black-and-white photos. "I never imagined pursuing it professionally," she said. Later she would attend Savannah College of Arts and Sciences, where she honed her craft and received a Master of Fine Arts in photography in 1999. Since then, Robinson's work has appeared in galleries all over the world and she's received grants and other distinctions for her work. Her book, also called "Snowbound" and published by German art-book house Kehrer Verlag, came out in December. Robinson took her first snowy photograph in Pennsylvania in 2002 while on a road trip. The photograph, which she titled "Running Fence," depicts fence posts connected by plastic orange mesh, running through and semi-buried by snow that renders its function obsolete. There was something that struck her about the image that she couldn't pin down. "I wanted to keep making it to figure out what it was," she said. As she started creating sparser images, she said they also became more complex in their meaning. Her other photos, taken over a five-year period, include such objects as a bucket, phone booth, basketball hoop, trampoline and above-ground swimming pool covered in snow. Some of these aren't in the exhibit at the Klompching, but appear in her book. "I'm very conscious of titles," she said. "I want to open up the possibility of an image without shutting it down." Robinson said her titles are there to suggest a direction to the viewer. For example, one of the images, "Sonata," shows intertwining footprints and fence posts resembling written music. She also describes a distinctly American element present in her "Snowbound" collection. "There's something reminiscent of a specific experience to me, a suburban childhood," she said. But Robinson admits she's been surprised to learn how that American blush captured in her photographs - "the way we shape our concrete, how the pylons here are orange, but elsewhere they're blue É" - has still managed to resonate with Europeans and South Americans who have seen her work at exhibits abroad and commented on the familiarity of the images.If You Go"Snowbound": Photographs by Lisa M. RobinsonDate: Until Feb. 29Time: Wednesday-Saturday, 11 a.m.Ð6 p.m.Location: Klompching Gallery, 111 Front St., Suite 206, Brooklyn.For More: 212-796-2070, klompching.com or lisamrobinson.com
©2008 Community Newspaper Group
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