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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

for questioning.

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

memory.

"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."

"Hieroglyphs" by Nick Barberio and "Glimpse of

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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