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Oak Tree, Holmdel, NJ, 1970

George Tice (b. 1938, Newark)
Oak Tree, Holmdel, New Jersey, 1970
Platinum/palladium print, printed 2007
20 x 24 in. (50.8 x 61.0 cm)
Edition 4/30

Alexey Titarenko (b. 1962, St. Petersburg)

Alexey Titarenko (b. 1962, St. Petersburg)
Midtown Sunrise, 2018
Unique toned gelatin silver print, handmade in the darkroom by the artist
Image 17 1/8 x 17 1/8 in. (43.5 x 43.5 cm)
Paper 19 5/8 x 23 5/8 in. (50 x 60 cm)
Edition of 5
Signed, dated and editioned in pencil on verso


After spending over thirty years photographing the cities of St. Petersburg, Venice, and Havana, in the early 2000s Titarenko turned his lens toward a very different city: New York. In this series, Titarenko brings his longstanding concerns with time and history to bear on a relatively young city known for its relentless, headlong pace. Titarenko is known for applying long exposure to street photography, and this technical innovation reaches its peak in his photographs of New York, where buses, taxis, trains, and planes are in constant movement against a backdrop of both turn-of-the-century façades and the multivalent, overlapping signage of the modern era. In Midtown Sunrise, we see how this use of long exposure combines with Titarenko’s masterful, painterly application of selective toning. An everyday scene, a tree on a busy city block, becomes a moment of awe and grace; Titarenko frames a solitary tree in the center of a whirlwind of passers-by and vehicles, and crowns its branches with a halo of gold.

Albarrán Cabrera (b. 1969, Spain)

Albarrán Cabrera (b. 1969, Spain)
#796 from the series The Mouth of Krishna, 2019
Pigments, Japanese gampi paper, and gold leaf
7 1/2 x 9 1/4 in. (19 x 23.5 cm)
Edition of 20


"In 2019, during our last trip to Tokyo, we met the same tree that we had shot in 2015. However, the tree we found was different from the tree we had seen four years ago, which in turn made us realize that we were not the same persons who had met the tree years ago." ― Albarrán Cabrera

“No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it's not the same river and he's not the same man.”
― Heraclitus

“I always think everything is going to last forever, but nothing ever does. In fact nothing exists longer than an instant, except the thing that we hold in memory.”
― Sam Savage, Firmin
 

Tree #14, New York, 1965

George Tice (b. 1938, Newark)

Tree #14, New York
1965, printed 5/7/03
Gelatin silver print
Image: 10 1/4 x 10 3/8 in. (26.0 x 26.4 cm)
Mount: 11 x 14 in. (27.9 x 35.6 cm)
trees, spain

Pentti Sammallahti (b. 1950, Helsinki)
Leon, Spain (trees), 2006
Gelatin silver print
Signed and dated by the artist
Image 4 5/8 x 5 13/16 in. (11.8 x 14.8 cm)
Image 7 3/4 x 5 3/4 in. (19.7 x 14.6 cm)

Denis Brihat (b. 1928, Paris)

Denis Brihat (b. 1928, Paris)
Pine tree in Ireland, 1997
Gelatin silver print with photographic etching
15 x 19 1/2 in. (38.1 x 50 cm)
Edition 5/6

oak tree

Lucretia Moroni (b. 1960, Milan)
In memory of Letizia (oak tree), 2014-18
Palladium print on palladium leaf
Image 5 1/4 x 5 in. (13.3 x 12.7 cm)
Paper 7 1/2 x 7 1/2 in. (19.1 x 19.1 cm)


Moroni’s alternative process prints are the result of a singular technique she has invented for printing platinum and palladium, among other alternative process chemicals, directly onto metallic leaf. Moroni carefully prepares watercolor paper with a special Gesso solution, sanding between coats in order to achieve as smooth a surface as possible. In this case of this print, she has then applied palladium leaf, followed by a layer of gelatin. Lastly, she applies the palladium or platinum solution, whose sensitivity to light is used to create a contact print from her negative. This ambitious and exacting process often requires repeated exposures and applications of platinum and palladium to achieve the desired result.
 

tree, finland

Pentti Sammallahti (b. 1950, Helsinki)
Jomala, Finland, 1973
Signed and dated by the artist
Paper 5 7/8 x 7 7/8 in. (2.3 x 3.1 cm)
Image 4 1/8 x 5 3/4 in. (1.6 x 2.3 cm)

oak tree

Lucretia Moroni (b. 1960, Milan)
In memory of Letizia (oak tree), 2013
Palladium print on 22-karat gold leaf
Image 2 3/4 x 2 7/8 in. (7 x 7.3 cm)
Paper 4 1/4 x 5 7/8 in. (10.8 x 15 cm)
Signed, titled, and dated on verso
Signed and dated on recto


Moroni's alternative process prints are the result of a singular technique she has invented for printing platinum and palladium, among other alternative process chemicals, directly onto metallic leaf. Moroni carefully prepares watercolor paper with a special Gesso solution, sanding between coats in order to achieve as smooth a surface as possible. In this case of this print, she has then applied 22-karat Manetti gold leaf, followed by a layer of gelatin. Lastly, she applies the palladium or platinum solution, whose sensitivity to light is used to create a contact print from her negative. This ambitious and exacting process often requires repeated exposures and applications of platinum and palladium to achieve the desired result.

Moroni has long been interested in gold due to its status as a symbol of the unattainable and the Divine; as well as to its role in art throughout history, from the ancient Egyptians to Byzantine religious iconography. This oak tree was photographed in Italy, and the delicate craquelure created by the gold leaf and palladium creates a texture reminiscent of a mosaic or a painting and suggests just the silhouette of the tree.
 

larches

Denis Brihat (b. 1928, Paris)
Mélèzes à Valprévert (Larches in Valprévert), 1988
Gelatin silver print with photographic etching
16 x 20 in. (40.6 x 50.8 cm)
Signed on recto

Nicholas Hughes (b. 1963, Liverpool)

Nicholas Hughes (b. 1963, Liverpool)
#13 from the series In Darkness Visible, Verse I, 2007
C-type print
16 x 20 in. (40.6 x 50.8 cm)
Edition of 15

Albarrán Cabrera (b. 1969, Spain)

Albarrán Cabrera (b. 1969, Spain)
#804 from the series The Mouth of Krishna, 2019
Pigments, Japanese gampi paper, and gold leaf
10 5/8 x 7 1/8 in. (27 x 18 cm)
Edition of 20


"Sometimes the day begins with nothing to look forward to and things go from bad to worse. Darkness overcomes you; nobody understands; the world is a deaf machine... Then all your trouble come at once. Wonderful things are passing you by. Terrible fates are inevitable... but suddenly there it is right in front of you bright and vivid quietly waiting just as you imagined it would be."

Shaun Tan, "The red tree"
 

whirlpool park, niagara falls

Ann Rhoney (b. 1953, Niagara Falls)
Whirlpool Park, Niagara Falls, 1977, painted 2020
Gelatin silver print with applied oil paint
Image 7 x 4 7/8 in. (17.8 x 12.4 cm)
Paper 10 x 8 in. (25.4 x 20.3 cm)


This image, photographed in Whirlpool Park in the artist’s native city of Niagara Falls, highlights Rhoney’s signature technique of applying oil paint to the surface of her black-and-white gelatin-silver photographs. Rhoney has printed this image on Agfa Portriga paper, which is no longer in production, and carefully applied a subtle layer of oil paint in order to build depth in the image and to register nuances of color that are faithful to both the scene and her personal vision. The result is a print whose hues and tones have a richness and authenticity unattainable in traditional color photography.
 

Sumner Wells Hatch (b. 1984, New Hampshire)

Sumner Wells Hatch (b. 1984, New Hampshire)
The Old Oak, 2009, from the series Private Ground
Toned gelatin silver print, handmade in the darkroom by the artist
Edition 1/10
16 x 20 in. (40.6 x 50.8 cm)

oak tree

Lucretia Moroni (b. 1960, Milan)
In memory of Letizia (oak tree), 2020
Palladium print on 22-karat gold leaf
Image 5 1/2 x 5 1/2 in. (14 x 14 cm)
Paper 7 1/4 x 7 1/2 in. (18.4 x 19.1 cm)
Signed and dated on recto


Moroni's alternative process prints are the result of a singular technique she has invented for printing platinum and palladium, among other alternative process chemicals, directly onto metallic leaf. Moroni carefully prepares watercolor paper with a special Gesso solution, sanding between coats in order to achieve as smooth a surface as possible. In this case of this print, she has then applied 22-karat Manetti gold leaf, followed by a layer of gelatin. Lastly, she applies the palladium or platinum solution, whose sensitivity to light is used to create a contact print from her negative. This ambitious and exacting process often requires repeated exposures and applications of platinum and palladium to achieve the desired result.
 

tree, oderbruch

Ingar Krauss (b. 1965, East Berlin)
Untitled (tree), Oderbruch, 2019
Framed gelatin silver print
Frame 19 3/4 x 17 1/4 in. (50 x 44 cm)
Print 11 3/4 x 9 1/2 in. (30 x 24 cm)
Edition 1/8

Press Release

Nailya Alexander Gallery is pleased to present Tree of Life, on view online Monday 29 June — Friday 31 July 2020. This group exhibition includes work by Denis Brihat (b. 1928, Paris), Albarrán Cabrera (b. 1969, Spain), Ingar Krauss (b. 1965, East Berlin), Sumner Wells Hatch (b. 1984, New Hampshire), Nicholas Hughes (b. 1963, Liverpool), Ann Rhoney (b. 1953, Niagara Falls), Pentti Sammallahti (b. 1950, Helsinki), George Tice (b. 1938, Newark), and Alexey Titarenko (b. 1962, St. Petersburg). The exhibition also includes a new artist that we are excited to welcome to our gallery, Lucretia Moroni (b. 1960, Milan).

There are few symbols as pervasive across different religions, philosophies, and mythologies as the tree. For thousands of years, all around the world, trees have been seen as the embodiment of holiness, knowledge, and interconnectedness; above all, they have been seen as symbols of life, growth, and rebirth. In the ancient Celtic tradition, trees were understood to be both gateways to the spiritual world and forces of harmony in the natural world, with the branches and roots often depicted as interlacing to represent the cycle of life. The many worlds of Norse mythology are connected by a massive tree that is the very center of the cosmos; and in the pagan traditions of central Europe, trees were even holier than temples, and were the sites of sacred cult practices and rituals. In Islam, the tree is not only a spiritual concept but also an architectural motif, with trees appearing as a pattern on the walls of mosques as a representation of the potential for spiritual growth through prayer; while in Judiasm, the tree of life is often used as a metaphor to describe the Torah itself.

Our exhibition celebrates the timeless symbolism of the tree through the work of ten contemporary artists. Their images illustrate the power of the tree to elevate the human spirit, and to remind us of the rich and renewing nature of life. In some images, such as George Tice’s masterful platinum/platinum print of an oak tree, Denis Brihat’s prints of pine trees and larches, and Nicholas Hughes’ c-print from the series In Darkness Visible, the tree and the surrounding greenery fill the frame, impressing upon the viewer the wealth and power of nature. In Brihat’s image, his unique process of engraving on the surface of the print gives a three-dimensional effect to the branches and needles of the flora.

For both Albarrán Cabrera and Lucretia Moroni, the use of gold evokes its association with divinity, and its historical use in the representation of icons and in religious manuscripts. Albarrán Cabrera’s image from the series The Mouth of Krishna, printed on delicate Japanese gampi paper with a backing of gold leaf, shows a solitary tree, starkly graceful and bright with color against a nondescript wall. Moroni’s palladium prints are printed directly onto palladium leaf and 22-karat gold leaf; the result is a rich, jewel-like work of art with a fine craquelure that is at once earthy and elegant.

Alexey Titarenko frames a solitary tree on a city block in the center of a whirlwind of passers-by and vehicles, elevating an everyday scene to a moment of awe and grace, and crowning its branches with a halo of gold. Sumner Wells Hatch depicts his tree at sunrise, the light shining through heavy fog and throwing its age-old branches into stark relief. Ann Rhoney shows a group of trees, set back at a distance, the low sun throwing their trunks into long shadows across a grassy park; while Ingar Krauss captures a more somber moment in his image of a tree rising above three crooked headstones, its leaves scattered around their graves.

Please direct all inquiries to info@nailyaalexandergallery.com.