Grassland Photograms by Klea Mckenna
Photography is not just the shot of a machine. In fact you’ll rarely see Klea Mckenna, artist and photographer from San Francisco, around with a reflex around her neck. You’ll rather find her fiddling with manual cameras or playing around with photosensitive paper until obtaining abstract compositions, sculptures and installations.
In a landscape, for example, Klea won’t try to find the light, composition or most interesting viewpoint. She’ll go searching for a visual and emotional imprint of the place, letting the photographic matter interact with it.
In series "Grassland Photograms", on 20x24 inch silver gelatins, Klea doesn’t portray high grasslands moved by the wind, as the first part of the title might suggest. Instead she collects grass and other materials, places them on photographic paper, until revealing something unexpected, like subterranean paths to our perception of places.
The subject of the photo and the photographic medium form a physical relation and the familiar image of a meadow with grass bending from the wind becomes an abstract landscape, a sort of lunar forest ravaged by cosmic fires, or the image we just envisioned burning unconsciously in our memory.
Photos © kleamckenna.com
a chat with Jordy van den Nieuwendijk