Monday, 21 December 2009
Garry Fabian Miller
Garry Fabian Miller is one of a small band of international photographers who investigate the possibilities of camera-less
photography (the interaction of light and light-sensitive paper). Miller continues to push the boundaries of photographic
possibility into the 21st century whilst always keeping one eye on the past and, in particular, on a lineage that dates back to
the first practitioners of the art (and science) of photographic experiment in the 1830s and ‘40’s.
The results are unique, one-off prints that condense light and colour into spectacular images. However, the delicate
balance between the art and science of these methods has come into clear focus in the past few years as the all important
‘science’ of the raw material – light sensitive Cibachrome paper - has come under threat from the digital age. Artists such
as Miller have had to stockpile materials and re-think their practice as the manufacturers of their precious paper go to the
Armed with the knowledge and experience of old methods that can’t be replicated, Miller has risen to the challenge,
feeling his way forward and building a bridge into a new and principally digital world. The resulting work suggests an
evolutionary moment, sharing the values of historical knowledge with the potential of the future. These photographs will
take their place in Shadow Catchers, a major survey of camera-less photography at the Victoria & Albert Museum, in
November 2010. Ahead of this they will be shown for the first time at Ingleby Gallery in November and December this
year, under the collective title The Colours.
They are remarkable photographs, embracing the possibilities of pure, liquid colour on a large scale and using the new
printing technologies to restore the intensity of those first experiments in Cibachrome of 30-40 years ago. Their starting
point was 2 years of intense studio based practice – referred to by Miller as Years One and Two – that collated all of his
accumulated knowledge into a kind of pattern book of ideas for the future. We will be showing groups of small-scale
works from Years One, and Two alongside the new large format images.