Corrections or additions?
This article was prepared for the March 13, 2005
issue of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.
Urbanscapes & Landscapes: To See – & See Again
In March, 2003, photographer Nick Barberio decided to use up some
black and white film by shooting industrial sites through the window
of the New Jersey Transit train he was riding from Princeton to New
York. A fellow passenger slipped off and spoke with a conductor and
before Barberio knew it, he was being pulled off the train in Newark
Although Barberio was ultimately released, he turned the experience
into an exhibit, "Reconnaissance," which was held in November, 2003,
at Steven Harris Architects in the TriBeCa district of Manhattan. He
called the show his "own personal spying on the world" from trains,
planes, and buses.
On Friday, March 18, Barberio unveils a new exhibit, "Hieroglyphs," at
Gallery 14 in Hopewell. The title reflects Barberio’s exploration of
the relationship of word and image in the context of making meaning.
He says the images in "Hieroglyphs" are meant to express an idea,
emotion – or nothing at all. Viewers bring their own meaning of each
image to the table. The photographs might be as simple as a single
word or a visual pun, or as complex as the concepts of childhood or
"I consider my work a process of capturing reality and returning to
its origins as an idea, as if a fleeting moment in time had been
meticulously drawn out and planned," says Barbario, a resident of
Princeton and New York whose photography is influenced by
architectural drawing. The images in "Hieroglyphs" showcase a
juxtaposition of objects within the frame that likely would have been
overlooked if Barberio hadn’t clicked the shutter.
In addition to art and commercial photography, Barberio works as a
researcher at the Costume Institute in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
He has also worked at the Princeton University Art Museum, McCarter
Theater, and at Princeton Adult School.
Exhibiting in tandem with Barberio is Martin Schwartz, whose show is
titled "Glimpse of Yellowstone and Yosemite." Schwartz visited these
two great national parks in the summers of 2003 and 2004. The work in
"Glimpse" is all digital, Schwartz’s first project in which he did not
use film. Some images were manipulated in Photoshop and some were made
to have a painterly effect.
Schwartz’s intention on his park trips was to shoot intimate
landscapes. At Yellowstone he turned his camera on wildlife, lakes,
rivers, thermal mud volcanoes, and geysers. At Yosemite, he widened
his scope in response to the park’s awesome geological formations – El
Capitan, Half Dome, Bridal Veil Falls, and Yosemite Falls.
Schwartz acknowledges that some photographers spend a professional
lifetime shootings these parks and that his time was limited by
comparison. But the photographs underscore his adoration for the
natural wonders of both parks, which he believes are worthy of being
seen again and again. "If you have not seen them, go," he says. "If
you have seen them, return."
Yellowstone and Yosemite" by Martin Schwartz, Gallery 14, 14 Mercer
Street, Hopewell. 609-333-8511. Reception, Friday, March 18, 6 to 9
p.m. Meet the photographers, Sunday, March 20, 1 to 3 p.m.
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