Greetings! Once again, here is our newsletter to bring you up to date on our activities in the world of photography and to provide a record of some of our activities in 2007 and those planned for 2008. Significant events for 2008 include a commission to photograph Chicago, another summer of photographing in Iceland, several exhibitions, and our participation in an open studio tour for selected artists in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Again, the addendum at the end lists prices and availability for our photographs, books, portfolios, and other items .
Highlights from 2007 included our trip to Australia in March where we had an exhibition at Gordon and Lyndel Undy's Point Light Gallery in Sydney. We then conducted two Vision and Technique Workshops at Bob and Mary Kersey's Black Mountain Photography Workshops near Oberon, three hours west of Sydney. Black Mountain is in the bush, that area between the more populated coast and the outback. Rolling hills and eucalyptus trees (or gum trees as they are called) predominate. We were at Black Mountain for over a week and every morning woke up to see kangaroos and wallabies in the front yard, and bright red parrots and chattering kookaburras in the gum trees. And we became acquainted with Frank, a neighbor's playful pet wombat; before this trip we didn't exactly know what a wombat was. After the workshops we traveled to Australia's eastern part of the south coast—the beautiful Australian version of Highway 1 in California. It was a wonderful trip and long-range plans include returning and photographing in Australia.
Another highlight was our trip to Tuscany in October to teach a workshop in the beautiful small village of Castello di Lamole—high on a hill not far from Greve in Chianti. After the workshop we treated ourselves to our longest vacation ever: we spent a week in Rome, a city where Michael had never been, and where Paula had not been for 40 years. We walked everywhere and saw as much as we could in a week. Paula remembered what the Coliseum and the Forum were like 40 years ago and was amazed to see how much has been excavated since then. The excavation of the ancient civilization appears as if it will continue for hundreds of years. Most memorable to us were the Baths of Caracalla. It is astonishing that the ancient builders were able to accomplish such brilliant engineering feats without the use of modern heavy equipment. An unexpected bonus while in Rome was our discovery of a major Gaugin retrospective and a major Rothko retrospective. Both exhibitions included many early paintings—work we had not previously seen. On our last day in Rome, Paula photographed most of the day with her 6x7 cm. camera. The weather was perfect.
Photographs and Photographing: Our work veered into surprising directions in 2007.
Michael : While teaching a workshop in Sedona, Arizona, in January, Michael asked one of the participants, who worked for the Maricopa County Sheriff's Department (Phoenix, Arizona), if he could make photographs where he worked. The participant asked Michael if he knew about Sheriff Joe and was surprised that Michael had not heard of him, since Sheriff Joe is the most famous sheriff in America and has even appeared on "60 Minutes." He then went on to describe a particular section of the jail where the most dangerous criminals were housed. Michael then suggested how the participant might photograph these incarcerated men and accompany the photographs with text that the inmates would write. As Michael kept describing, in ever-greater detail, how the project might be done, he stopped and said, "This sounds like such a great project that I would like to do it." The participant said, "Okay," and that he would be happy to arrange access.
After the workshop we went to Phoenix to tour the jail and to visit the section where these dangerous inmates were housed. It was somewhat frightening, but Michael determined that he would still like to make this series of photographs.
He returned to Phoenix in June with his 8x10 camera to photograph in both black and white and in color the eighty-five inmates who volunteered. Each of the inmates also answered questions in writing. Some of them added additional writing—up to eleven pages in one instance. Michael found the writing so fascinating that he returned to Phoenix in August to interview the inmates and to make additional photographs. In the end he had photographed ninety-eight inmates and interviewed sixty-five.
The photographs are direct and strong and the interviews are amazing. As a result of talking to so many criminals and getting to know them somewhat, Michael's views about the penal system have been significantly broadened.
A few of the color photographs have been enlarged to 32" x 40" and have been exhibited at our Lodima Press booth at Paris Photo in November, at the AIPAD show in Miami in December at the Vintage Works/Contemporary Works Gallery (VW/CW), and again in January at the VW/CW booth at Photo LA, and also at our own Lodima Press booth at Photo LA. Some viewers who are familiar with Michael's photographs thought the gallery had made a labeling mistake and that these photographs couldn't possibly be by Michael. People forget, or never knew, that Michael has made portraits throughout his entire career, most notably his series from Broward County, Florida, and the students at Deep Springs College. Several of these inmate photographs will be shown at the Fay Gold Gallery at the AIPAD Photography Show New York in April, and at VW/CW at Art Chicago, also in April.
Plans for a book about the inmates are underway, although with everything else we are doing it will not be finished until 2009, and exhibitions will be scheduled far into the future.
Paula: On flights to Amarillo on her way to visit her family farm in the Texas Panhandle (see her book High Plains Farm) Paula would always long to photograph the patterns of the earth as seen from above. In 2007 she finally had the opportunity to do so. A friend with whom she grew up in the Panhandle is a private pilot and he came to visit us just before we took off on a trip to the west coast. When Paula described what she wanted to do, her friend's co-pilot, who had come with him, said that he had access to a private plane and could take her up. They flew over parts of the Texas Panhandle and Paula made so many photographs with her 6x7 cm. camera that we wonder if she will ever have time to print them. And she plans more photographing flights over the Panhandle again this year.
As you may recall from previous newsletters, when we travel overseas to print books or to go to Paris Photo, we cannot take our large cameras, so for the past few years, in addition to her photographing with her 8x10-inch view camera, Paula has been photographing with a 6x7. And she has been making small elegant contact prints. But this work from the air shows so many details at such a great distance that these photographs will be enlarged.
Iceland: After our photographing trips to Iceland in 2004 and 2006 we thought it unlikely that we would return to photograph again in that magnificent country—there are so many other places in the world where we want to photograph. Although we have more than enough work for the books we plan to publish of our Iceland photographs, we discovered that we both missed Iceland a great deal. And so we plan to return one more time. An extensive photographing and filming trip is planned for this summer.
Chicago: We have been commissioned by U.S. Equities Realty to photograph particular aspects of Chicago. A book of this work will be published at the end of 2009.
Platinum Prints: Paula added a new platinum print to her platinum series and it, as well as the others, has been very well received. At Photo LA, as part of the programming, collectors and curators give guided tours of the show in the hours before it is open to the general public. A friend of ours happened to be in one of these groups. He told us that the collector who was leading a group came to our Lodima Press booth, pointed to this new platinum print of Paula's and said, "If I were to buy only one photograph at Photo LA, this would be the one."
Galleries will now be handling these platinum prints. The Peter Wach Gallery will display them at the AIPAD Photography Show New York in April. And in November and December we will have an exhibition of these prints at Gallery 291—a new gallery that has just opened in San Francisco. We are proud to be represented by these two fine galleries.
Paula's platinum prints are printed on translucent handmade Japanese Taizan paper 23" x 29". Michael's are printed on Arches Platine paper and are one meter wide—15" x 39". To make these prints our original negatives are scanned at the Salto Platinum Atelier in Belgium; then five enlarged digital negatives are made from each scan and are then printed in register with multiple exposures—a lengthy and arduous process. These platinum prints are as beautiful as any we have ever seen. Each is limited to an edition of ten with two artists' proofs.
Please keep in mind that seeing photographs on the Internet is nothing like seeing them "in the flesh," especially with Paula's platinum prints on the thin Taizan paper, where the delicacy and luminescence does not translate well, but we hope you can get at least some idea of their quality and appearance.
Azo Paper: Testing is still ongoing for the new silver chloride paper we are having made. With any luck, we will have paper later this year, and possibly by early fall. Real progress has been made in what many have called an impossible undertaking.
The Film: Paula has finally begun to edit the film she made in Iceland. The imagery is simply captivating. She is planning to make many films from this material, some as multi-screen installations, some in small editions.
Last year (2007) we had joint exhibitions at the Point Light Gallery in Sydney, Australia, at Camera Obscura in Denver, and at the Baldwin Photographic Gallery at Middle Tennessee State University. Michael had an exhibition of his Tuscany photographs at Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and Paula had an exhibition of her High Plains Farm photographs at the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin. And our photographs were included in eight group exhibitions throughout the United States.
In 2008 we will have an exhibition of our platinum prints and other photographs at Gallery 291 in San Francisco. This new gallery, at 291 Geary Street, is directly across from Union Square. We saw the gallery in its final stages of construction and were very impressed. The owner Ed Carey told us "I will have only one chance to have a gallery and I want to do it right." We will be in San Francisco for the opening on October 29 and/or November 1. If you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, we invite you to come and hope to see you there.
Paula's photographs from High Plains Farm have been selected for the Art in Embassies Program by the U.S. Department of State. Twenty photographs will be hung in the rotunda at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Columbia, for three years, and her photographs from that series will be reproduced in the Art in Embassies Exhibition Catalog.
Paula will have an exhibition of her landscape photographs in the fall at the James A. Michener Art Museum in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. The Michener is one of the finest small regional museums in the entire USA. Paula's photographs will be shown along with the work of two painters. The exhibition will also feature one of her videos from Iceland. The curator for the exhibition was here recently and commented to Paula, "Your stills are just like your films; they are all about movement—very active rhythms, yet peaceful at the same time."
Our long-running exhibition in Paris at the charming Italian restaurant, Olio Pane Vino, at 44, rue Coquillière in the first arrondissement went up in November when we were there for Paris Photo. Francesco Bertuna, the owner of the restaurant is both an art lover and a great chef. We warmly recommend the restaurant for its excellent yet inexpensive food. If you can make it to Olio Pane Vino, tell Francesco that we sent you. You will love meeting him.
Elephant's Eye Bucks County Artists Studio Tour
We have been invited to join a small group of Bucks County artists who are opening their studios to the public for two weekends in May—May 9, 10, 11, and May 17–18. The other artists include a woodworker, sculptors, and ceramic artists. See www.elephantseyetour.org.
Book Publishing: Lodima Press
We have continued publishing two series of books:
The Portfolios of Brett Weston—a nineteen-volume series: In the Brett Weston series we published number three, New York, in 2007, and we published number four, Fifteen Photographs, in the first week of 2008. We recently received the following comment from the Brett Weston Archive:
"Just received our copies of the new book. Speechless . . .
The best reproductions and writing ever. My earlier concerns with the
essay, now that I see it in print, seem petty. I wish my essay for the
upcoming exhibit were half as trenchant as Roger's analysis . . . [Roger Aikin's Afterword]
Two words: Thank you . . ."
This year we hope to print the next books in this series, Ten Photographs and Baja California.
Lodima Press Portfolio Book Series: We have continued with six more titles in this series of small, elegant books by many leading photographers: Planets by Arthur Tress, Flights Through Time by Marilyn Bridges and Stone Churches of Ireland by Paul Caponigro. Just released in January of this year was Still by Douglas Mellor. The Studios of Pietrasanta by Hans Bol, a Dutch photographer, will be released in March, and Close at Hand by Robert Adams will be released in May.
For further details about these series or to subscribe to either series, or both, or to order books individually, give us a call at 610-847-2007 or go to www.lodimapress.com.
Other Books: In late 2007 we published Ticetown—a beautiful and poetic document of renowned photographer George Tice's family history. From years of determined research, surprising discoveries and serendipitous events, Tice pieced together the mysteries of his forebears into a deeply moving book that transforms genealogy into art.
Ticetown is published in a signed, numbered, and slipcased limited edition of 100 (it comes with your choice of one of two platinum prints), and in an edition of 1,000 hardbound copies. For more information and to see jpgs of the two platinum prints go to www.lodimapress.com.
Publishing: B&W Magazine
Due to doubling of the ad rates, our B&W ads are now reduced to one page. And the 24-page article about us from issue #29 is now on our website as a PDF.
Publishing: Expos and Trade Shows
Paris Photo: In mid-November we had a Lodima Press publisher's booth for the fourth year at Paris Photo—the European counterpart to the AIPAD Photography Show New York. Paris Photo, however, has many more participants and larger crowds. Once again Paris Photo was a wonderful and successful experience and we plan to have a booth there again this year, if they will have us. Each year the participants are juried in so we have no guarantees, but we hope we will be accepted. Paris Photo 2008 will be from November 12–16.
Photo LA: In early January of this year we had a Lodima Press publisher's booth at Photo LA. Not only could we exhibit our books, but also our platinum prints, Michael's color photographs from his Inmates series, and his new color photographs from Iceland. We also exhibited photographs by other photographers that Lodima Press has published. Photographer Bob Kersey from Black Mountain, Australia, joined us and also exhibited at our booth with great success. Many new contacts were made and we are considering Photo LA for next year.
SPE Conference and Foto3 Conference: We will have a Lodima Press booth at the Society for Photographic Education Conference in Denver on March 14 and 15. And we will also have a Lodima Press booth at the Foto3 Conference in Fort Collins, Colorado, from June 6–8. Paula will be delivering a talk at the Foto3 conference and will also be doing portfolio reviews.
www.michaelandpaula.com and www.lodimapress.com
Major revision is underway on both of these web sites. Although there is still much to do, the Lodima Press site has undergone significant improvement. We hope to keep improving both of these web sites.
If you haven't been to our web site and registered on the sign-up page, please do so. We can then notify you of special offers, exhibitions, books, and generally keep you informed of what we are doing in the world of photography. We have some special things planned for the site that will be available only to those who have signed up.
Workshops in 2007
Last year we conducted Vision and Technique Workshops in Sedona, Arizona, Black Mountain, Australia, Denver, Colorado, and Castello di Lamole, Tuscany. This year's workshop schedule is much lighter.
Iceland: We will be conducting a ten-day workshop in Iceland, from July 11–20. Full details are at www.michaelandpaula.com. Click on "Workshops."
Our Building Project continues, but slowly. We do expect, however, to soon have one building finished and fully functioning.
As many of you know or as you might have learned from the feature article on us in B&W, our livelihood as full-time artists is always difficult and uncertain. We would be most grateful to receive the names of anyone whom you think would be interested in our photographs so that we might contact them by phone or mail to introduce them to our work.
As always, we are deeply grateful for your interest in and support of our work. As part of our audience, you complete a vital circle and make a valuable contribution to the creative process and to the making of our art.
Whenever possible during our travels, we hope we can see you for a visit. And do remember that you are always welcome to visit us here at our home/studio in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.
We send you our warmest regards and best wishes for a happy and healthy New Year,
Many of you have requested updates on our print prices for your records and for appraisal. This addendum contains those updates and also provides information about our books, exhibition catalogues, portfolios, note cards, posters, and (singular) video. Please note that there have been some changes and additions. These are designated with an asterisk.
Photographs: Silver Chloride Contact Prints
Now that we are not printing from older negatives (except in a very few instances), prints from these negatives are now editioned. The edition number is different for every image: for some photographs it may be as few as 4 or 5; for others it could be 12, or 17, 26, or 33, or some other "odd" number. Although we have never before editioned our photographs, we have always assigned each print a unique number and have kept exact records of how many prints of each image we have made.
Each year we expect the photographs that fall into the "older" category to change by one year, although that is not rigidly fixed. We may consider certain work "current" for more than two years or we may consider it to be current for only one year. Here are prices as of January 1, 2007.
* Current photographs (2004, 2005, 2006):
Michael: 8 x 20 $3,000. Paula: 8 x 10 $2,000.
Color 8 x 10 $2,000. 5 x 7 $1,000.
4 x 5 $1,000.
Multiple 6x6 and 6x7 $1,250.–$3,000.
* Older photographs (pre-2004):
Michael: 8 x 10 $2,000.–$10,000. Paula: 8 x 10 $2,000.–$5,000.
8 x 20 $3,000.–$10,000. 5 x 7 $1,000.–$3,000.
18 x 22 $4,500.–$10,000. 4 x 5 $1,000.–$2,500.
The price for Michael's 2' x 5' silver print enlargements, made directly from his 8" x 20" negatives is $6,000 except for the two prints from which half the edition has sold. Those are priced at $7,500.
* Platinum prints: Our large platinum prints, in editions of ten with two artists' proofs, begin at $15,000 for Paula's prints and $10,000 for Michael's prints.
Books and Catalogues:
Tuscany: Wandering the Back Roads, Vol. I: Published in 2004, Paula's book of photographs of the countryside and small towns and villages of Tuscany. Essay by Robert Sobieszek, Curator of Photography at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Foreword by Ferenc Máté, author of The Hills of Tuscany, Preface by Michael and Paula. 70 reproductions printed in 600-line screen quadtone. $75 (plus $7 S&H). Signed and numbered, slipcased limited edition: $200 (plus $7 S&H).
Tuscany: Wandering the Back Roads, Vol. II: Published in 2004, Michael's book of 8x20-inch photographs of the countryside and small towns and villages of Tuscany. 59 reproductions printed in 600-line screen quadtone. $95 (plus $10 S&H). Signed and numbered, slipcased limited edition: $250 (plus $10 S&H).
Madonnina: Paula's book of photographs of the small shrines to the Madonna that can be found throughout the countryside in Tuscany. Foreword by Steven Maklansky, Assistant Director for Art and Curator of Photographs at the New Orleans Museum of Art, Essay by Giuliana Bianchi Caleri, Italian scholar, Preface by Paula. 50 reproductions printed in 600-line screen quadtone. $60 (plus $7 S&H). Signed and numbered, slipcased limited edition: $200 (plus $7 S&H).
Landscapes 1975–1979: This award-winning set of books is sold out.
Michael A. Smith: A Visual Journey: Photographs From Twenty-Five Years: Published in 1992, this book accompanied Michael's twenty-five year retrospective exhibition at the International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House. Foreword by Marianne Fulton, Essay by John Bratnober. 176 duotone reproductions. $95 (plus $7 S&H). Signed and numbered, slipcased limited edition: $250 (plus $7 S&H).
Princeton: An exhibition catalogue of Michael's with five reproductions and an essay by Richard Trenner. Published in 1985. Rare; fewer than thirty copies remain. $25 (plus $4 S&H).
Natural Connections: Photographs by Paula Chamlee: Published in 1994, a book of Paula's photographs of the natural landscape accompanied by selected writings from her journals with an essay by Estelle Jussim. Printed in Laser Silver-Lit Tones™, 42 tritone reproductions. $75 (plus $7 S&H). Signed and numbered, slipcased limited edition: $200 (plus $7 S&H).
High Plains Farm: Published in 1996, a book of Paula's photographs and writing about the farm where she grew up on the High Plains of the Texas Panhandle. Foreword by George F. Thompson. 81 duotone reproductions. $75 (plus $7 S&H). Signed and numbered, slipcased limited edition: $200 (plus $7 S&H).
San Francisco: Twenty Corner Markets and One in the Middle of the Block: Paula's third book, published in 1997. Sold out.
The Students of Deep Springs College: Michael's book about the most unusual college in America, published in 2000. Essay by L. Jackson Newell, Afterword by William T. Vollmann, Preface by Michael. 53 reproductions printed in 600-line screen quadtone. $50 (plus $7 S&H). Signed and numbered, slipcased limited edition: $200 (plus $7 S&H).
* A Field in Tuscany: An edition of ten portfolios self-published in 2000 containing eight 8" x 10" photographs archivally mounted and overmatted, and two sheets of deckle edged Arches paper printed letterpress. The portfolio comes in a handmade box covered in heavy linen. P.O.R.
* San Francisco: Twenty Corner Markets and One in the Middle of the Block: An edition of three portfolios self-published in 1997 containing twenty-one 8" x 10" photographs archivally mounted and overmatted, and three sheets of deckle edged Arches paper printed letterpress. The portfolio comes in a handmade box covered in heavy Italian linen. P.O.R.
High Plains Farm: A Unique Portfolio: An edition of fifteen portfolios self-published in 1996. Sold out.
Portfolios: Michael and Paula
* The Azo Portfolio: An edition of ten portfolios plus two artists' proofs self-published in 2006 containing a selection of ten photographs, five 8x20s by Michael and five 8x10s by Paula, archivally mounted and overmatted with two sheets of deckle-edged BFK Rives paper printed letterpress. The portfolio comes in a handmade box bound in heavy linen. This portfolio is produced for the purpose of helping finance the production of a new silver chloride paper. P.O.R.
* The Stones of Monteriggioni: A suite of six 8" x 20" photographs archivally mounted and overmatted. Printed in an edition of five. P.O.R.
* Eight Landscape Photographs: An edition of twenty portfolios plus two artist's proofs published by Regnis Press in 1983 containing eight 8" x 20" photographs archivally mounted and overmatted, and two sheets of deckle edged Arches paper printed letterpress. The portfolio comes in a handmade box covered in heavy linen. Upon completion of this portfolio, the negatives were retired; no further prints were made from them. P.O.R. Only one remains.
* Twelve Photographs 1967–1969: An edition of twenty-five portfolios self-published in 1970, this portfolio contains a representative selection of twelve photographs from this period. The 8" x 10" archivally mounted and overmatted photographs and two sheets of Arches paper printed letterpress come in a custom-made portfolio case covered in heavy linen. P.O.R
Michael A. Smith: Note Card Set One and Paula Chamlee: Note Card Set One: Two boxed sets of note cards, one set from each of us. Printed in Belgium by Salto in 600-line screen quadtone. Each set has twelve cards and envelopes—three cards each of four photographs of the natural landscape. We chose a fine card stock that is coated on the outside for optimum reproduction and uncoated on the inside for quick-dry, non-smear writing. Both sets are limited to an edition of only 1,000. $19.95 for the first set, and $16.95 for each additional set. $5.00 S&H for one set plus $2 for each additional set.
The four High Plains Farm posters are exquisitely printed in 300 line-screen duotone on heavy cover stock and were run through the press an additional and fourth time for extra luster and brilliance. Size: 19" x 26" for three of the posters and 19" x 27" for the fourth (a vertical photograph), $25 each or $75 for all four. A limited edition of signed and numbered posters is also available at $50 each or $150 for all four. For posters, add $6 S&H.
The PBS half-hour documentary film, High Plains Farm: Paula Chamlee, produced by KACV-TV is available in VHS from us for only $25 (plus $4.00 S&H).
Other Books from Lodima Press and BackStreetBooks
* The Portfolios of Brett Weston San Francisco
Ten Photographs (Fall 2008)
* Lodima Press Portfolio Books:
Home by Nicholas Nixon Planets by Arthur Tress
Solitudes by Carl Chiarenza Flights Through Time by Marilyn Bridges
Common Mementos by George Tice Stone Churches of Ireland by Paul Caponigro
Opera Nuda by Keith Carter Still by Douglas Mellor
Heaven/Earth by Linda Connor The Studios of Pietrasanta by Hans Bol (March 2008)
Primal Elegance by Larry Fink Close at Hand by Robert Adams (May 2008)
Edward Weston: Life Work
Los Crepúsculos de la Imaginación by Alejandro López de Haro R.
Stones and Marks by Peter Elliston
Passage: Europe by Richard Copeland Miller
Crash, Burn, Love: Demolition Derby by Bill Lowenburg (www.backstreetbooks.com)
Ticetown by George Tice