by Jerry Burchfield
Fall 2004, 11.5″ x 9.5″, 144 pages, 100 photographs
This unique, 144-page oversized book features Lumen photograms that celebrate the beauty of Amazon flora. 100 color plates will feature these historically unique one-of-a-kind images that are made on-site by Burchfield in the Amazon rainforests. In addition, color photographs of the Amazon environment will be interspersed among text essays by Wade Davis, Jonathan Green, and Burchfield. The book’s premire showing was at UCR/California Museum of Photography in the fall of 2003.
Burchfield began creating his lumens in 1998 during his first visit to the Amazon. Since then he has returned there many times to document the Amazon’s diverse flora. Utilizing methods that date back to the origins of photography, Burchfield creates his lumens (or printed-out photograms) by placing a plant specimen directly onto photographic paper that he secures outdoors to the deck of his boat. Relying on the serendipitous interaction of sunlight, weather, ambient temperature, and each plant’s inherent moisture, among many other uncontrollable factors, Burchfield produces an astonishing array of images from the starkly representational, to pure abstractions of color, shape, and form all of which capture the “physical essence” of each plant, as Burchfield writes in his concluding essay about his work.
“Rather than scientific description or environmental polemic, Burchfield’s lumen photograms confront us with the visual representation of the Amazon’s most elemental truth: natural process.”
From the Introduction by Jonathan Green, Director of the UCR’s California Museum of Photography
“The subtle elegance of [Burchfield’s] photographic technique reflects an eye that seeks to see beneath the surface of things to the very inner worlds that shaman desire to know.”
From the Foreword by Wade Davis, ethnobotanist and author of One River
In addition to the one-time limited hardcover print run, the publisher will be issuing a Special Edition of Primal Images. This Special Edition is limited to 150 copies signed and numbered by the artist. Each copy is presented in an elegant gold leaf embossed black clamshell box and includes a signed print of the cover image.