IMPRINTS by Ben K. Voss and Midge Wattles
190mm x 230mm, 40 pages, risograph printed throughout with foil block cover details, saddle stitched, 2020
‘IMPRINTS features a series of silver gelatin photographs created in collaboration between artists Ben K. Voss and Midge Wattles. The photographs made by Wattles depict drawings in snow and in sand made by Voss. The series began in the winter of 2018 during a residency outside of Aspen, Colorado, and has continued in the following summers along the shores of Lake Michigan.
The imagery suggests a wide range of subjects such as the naturalistic, the other-worldly, the scarring of the body and land, ancient scripts, and maps. Voss’s drawings are made intuitively with his hands, body, and materials he finds on site such as sticks, stones, shells, and water. Wattles approaches the drawings much like an explorer or archaeologist, discovering the drawings in an ever-changing, uncontrollable environment. Using the traditional darkroom process, Wattles prints the work using a variety of tones that obscure the viewer’s perception as she imagines each photograph as a unique terrain.
Their collaboration explores the relationship between the inner vision of the drawings and the physical world they inhabit as photographs. The work blurs the lines between expression and documentation, landscape and still life, and the mediums of photography and drawing. These dichotomies display a dialogue not only between the artists, but also a conversation with the planet itself. The earth is, in a sense, the third collaborator.’