Studio Address

14010 N. El Mirage Rd
El Mirage, AZ 85335

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Mysterious Light Photography Exhibition

Mysterious Light
Photography Exhibition

April 8-May 20 

Artist reception
April 29th, 6-8pm 

Musical Performances by:

 Masato Tachi 
Michael Hernandez

West Valley Arts Council
13243 N. Founders Park Blvd.  Surprise, AZ

Gallery Hours: Mon-Thurs 8:30-5pm, Friday 8:30-noon

Meet the artist, musical performances, food music, beer/wine.
Free and open to the public.

Mysterious Light: 
Thomas Schultz

  Since time immemorial man has looked to the heavens for answers to the questions: Where did I come from? Why am I here? And What will become of me?

  "It is certainly interesting to know that we come from the stars, but even more interesting is the realization that we're part of the cosmos, [and] although we may only be a speck in the immensity of the universe, we are the Great Father's children, and our destiny is linked to that of creation. Every being has a role to play, a destiny to fulfill, and so every bit of existence is transcendent." ~~~Don Isidro, Mayan Sage

  The photographs I display here are each literal photographic time capsules ~ a moment captured and recorded under the light of the moon. Seemingly ethereal, they depict a time and a subject, though time itself also serves as a subject.  Each still depicts a measure of the now....and the now...and the become what is shown: a singular event within an extended passage of time.  Each image portrays this time lapse; we need only to expand our vision to see beyond and into this space. In these individual time segments, the possibility of multiple dimensions can be conceived, and that these captured moments create perhaps a dimension unto itself in an idea of condensed time.  This concept makes one question the relationship of time and space, and of co- existing realities.

  Our belief systems are based on experience, knowledge and intuition, therefore we “know” what we see and feel. It would be easy to take reliable objects like the sun, the moon and the stars for granted, especially in a world so far removed from itself. What I feel is now more than ever we need to use our intuition and our knowledge to return to nature, to live in the moments, to see past our accepted reality.

  “Reality is the vision we have of what surrounds us, but there are other, much more subtle realities which are more important. As humans evolved, they lost this ability to perceive and are thus disconnected from the cosmos; in a state of neglect they seek to fill with material goods. This only condemns them to self- destruction and is the reason a return to the Natural Order is imperative." ~~~Ramon Carbala, Mayan Mam

  The primitive natives of the Malay Peninsula believed the firmament was solid. They imagined the sky as a great pot, held over the earth by a slender cord. If the cord broke the pot would fall and the earth would be destroyed. They also imagined the Sun and Moon as women, and the stars as the Moon's children. Legend tells us the Sun long ago had as many children as the Moon, and fearing that mankind could not bear so much heat and brilliance, they both agreed to devour their children. The Sun kept the bargain, but the Moon hid her children. The Sun was very angry and sought to kill the Moon. As she pursued her, the chase of Sun and Moon became a perpetual one. 

  It is our perceptions of time and space, which root us to a milestone, a memorable event, a singular moment. In any lapsed segment of so-called reality, we can sometimes see beyond what we previously knew to be possible, or what we imagined was reality, from just the moment before. Before, that is, it slips away into another, and another, and another; the sands of time in an endless hourglass, eons unfolding into eternity and a greater abyss of space.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Tetnus anyone!

Two weeks ago my friend Andrew Phelps was visiting from Austria, he just left town this morning to attend a lecture in New York.  Andy and I attended the same high school and spent many days together during our young adult years traversing the state of Arizona in search of adventure.  We often took our cameras and our skateboards on our trips, with hopes of finding a drainage ditch or empty backyard pool to consume the time.  Back then we did not have to travel far to reach the edge of town, and once beyond, the empty space was ours for the taking.  Little did we know that the landscape which we played would be a major part of our lives and the focus of our photography today.   Last week, while Andy was in town, we had the opportunity to go out into the abyss once again in search of lost luxury.  He suggested we head to Maricopa which was one of the cities worst hit during the real estate crash that began in late 2008.  When we arrived in Maricopa just after sunrise, it became apparent that much had changed since the late 80s, however it seemed that much of the developers got out in time, and the city had not suffered as dramatically as we had thought.  I was under the impression that Anthem was looking into a development in Maricopa, but we found no signs of such.  We did discover that Home Depot and an unknown movie theater had pulled the plug in the nick of time, however many homeowners and Walmart were not as lucky and remain stranded in the void many miles from anything.  These home owners were taking advantage of the amount of home that they could purchase compared to a home half the size in town.  Today in Maricopa you will find a handful of track home communities in which you will find homes huddled together, like desert wildlife taking shelter from the elements.  These small groups of homes are surrounded by vacant lots with streets, gutters and light poles, and the scene takes on new meaning.  Surrounded by a 6' block wall fence tumble weeds take rest as they are trapped in corners while the top edge of the wall creates a new horizon. 

We made a couple exposures then headed west on Maricopa Road in search of a site where an individual had collected 10 million used tires with plans of converting them to fuel. Tire story we located the site but were unable to enter due to a locked gate and a posted sign with the words No Trespassing State Property.  Neither of us were willing to take the we headed back in the direction we had came to photograph an abandoned double wide off the side of the road which we had seen on the way out.  On approach the home seemed to be in great condition, and I wondered why someone would leave a perfectly good home in the middle of nowhere.  The windows were covered with screens as if the owner had planned to return.  A golf club was inlayed in the thin top crust of the desert soil.  

Two iron stakes emerged from the ground with a short distance between, which Andy determined was the remains of horse shoe pit.  Both of us remembered the Brew and Shoe, which was a yearly event held at his families cabin on the rim, and symbolized a happy and care free time in our lives.  I found a single horse shoe later in the bathroom of the home, and on the way to the car I pitched it at the pin, the shoe hit the metal pole and rang out loudly.  It remained close enough to yield a point.  But before I had flung the shoe, I decided to exit the trailer from the front door, instead of the side door which I had entered, in hopes of discovering new photo opportunities, which I did...however, I discovered after jumping off of what remained of the front porch,  I was surrounded by a thick pile of tumbleweeds. 

 At first I thought I could just blaze a trail through, so I started forward but changed my mind at the last second.  At that moment I stepped into the tumbleweeds and onto a board hidden in the weeds.  A sharp pain entered my foot, I lifted my foot up to inspect as the board was stuck to it.  I pulled the board off my foot with much resistance, similar to removing a nail from wood with a hammer.  I then thought of Tetnus.  I hobbled back to the car expressed to Andy that I had stepped onto a nail and we needed to stop at a store in town and purchase supplies to clean it my wound.  The pain was hardly bearable, and I could feel that it was bleeding inside my shoe.  I did not even want to take my shoe off since there was nothing I could do at that point.  On the way back to town, we discussed how dangerous some of these locations are, and I had brought up the story of the photographer who died in a building in Detroit.  
Richard Nickel was interested in documenting with photographs abandoned buildings in Detroit, designed by Architect Louis Sullivan.  Through Richards work many of the buildings would be preserved. Like Richard I am very aware of hazards in and around abandoned buildings and take precautions to minimize injury, but I also realize that accidents happen.  Richard payed the ultimate price for his documentation of Detroit's disappearing architecture, and I a sore foot for about 4 days.  I will live to shoot another day...... see more pics from the trip

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Video Decay

You never know what you are going to find in an abandoned garage in a small mining town in Arizona.  Today on our return trip from Globe to photograph the Toastmaster before it is no longer, we stopped to photograph an old sign in front of a derelict gas station.  I made several exposures as I made my way around the property.  The garage had a couple roll up doors, which most of the glass was broke or missing. Without hesitation I proceeded to investigate by leaning my head through an opening.  Like I said you never no what you are going to find......see more.....