Photographer Isaac Layman on His Methods and His World View as Captured through the Lens
Joseph Gallivan interviews the photographer Isaac Layman, whose work is on show now in the Portland Art Museum as part of the 2013 Contemporary Northwest Art Awards.
Layman is known for his large digital photo compositions based on everyday objects such as cupboards, sinks and cutting boards. Seattle resident Layman will talk about his photographic method, his use of digital tools, and his world view as captured through the lens.
From the Elizabeth Leach Gallery press release for his Sept 2013 show "Funeral":
Known for large format, hyperreal images of objects from his everyday life, this new body of work includes photographic constructions as well as curated objects. The seemingly minimal yet painstakingly created works in Isaac Layman’s Funeral allow for intense contemplation on the nature of loss and the details of existence. A medicine cabinet, a porcelain sink, a cutting board: each piece is in a sense a vision of emptiness, what is left when life is gone. This new body of work makes reference to life’s transitions where the death of one part of a person’s life can initially cause sadness, but then lead to reflection, and eventually a whole new, and possibly even better, existence. In this way, these works hint through numerous perspectives to the possibility of the afterlife. Similar to a funeral, an art exhibition brings you into the present and entreats you to take time out of your day and slow down and think about what you see, what you hear, what you feel. Where can this contemplation take us? The possibilities are limitless.
Layman’s work has appeared in Lifelike, at the Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN) second nature: abstract photography then and now, at the DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum (Lincoln, MA), and Paradise, a solo show at the Frye Art Museum (Seattle, WA). Layman’s works are included in numerous private and public collections, including the Frye Art Museum, the Henry Art Gallery (Seattle, WA), the Margulies Collection at the Warehouse (Miami, FL), the Monsen Collection of Photography (Seattle, WA), the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (Houston, TX), the Norton Museum of Art (West Palm Beach, FL), the Portland Art Museum (Portland, OR), the Seattle Art Museum (Seattle, WA), the Tacoma Art Museum (Tacoma, WA) and the Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, MN). Among the artist’s awards and honors are the Betty Bowen Award from the Seattle Art Museum and this year’s Contemporary Northwest Art Award from the Portland Art Museum.
Joseph Gallivan has been a reporter since 1990. He has covered music for the London Independent, Technology for the New York Post, and arts and culture for the Portland Tribune. He is the author of two novels, "Oi, Ref!" and "England All Over" which are available on Amazon.com