Byamba by Phil Borges

Seattle Times Art Critic- Sheila Farr by Davis Freeman

The Portrait

Featuring work by:
Phil Borges and Davis Freeman

Phil Borges Retrospective
Shilo and Benba

When I first started to get serious about photography I was fortunate enough to take a portraiture class from a very inspirational photographer named Ron Zak. One of the concepts he drilled into our heads was to create 'bodies of work' around a theme-to use our cameras to 'mine' a subject.

In tribute to Ron and his influence on my work, and me, I have put together a few images from some of those 'bodies of work'. Early on I was very taken by the work of Richard Avedon, Robert Maplethorpe. Irving Penn, and Edward Curtis. My immersion in photography began with my son's birth and many of my earliest images were of him. The series on couples actually began in Ron's class and reflects my early influence by Avedon. I can see the influence of Maplethorpe's work in my series 'African American Beauty' that actually resulted in my first exhibit that opened in 1989 at the Benham Gallery in Seattle. Irving Penn and Edward Curtis were strong influences in my portrait work with indigenous peoples that resulted in three series Tibetan Portrait; Enduring Spirit; and my ongoing project on shamanism The Spirit of Place.

In a way it seems a bit premature and arrogant to be doing a retrospective. However, for the past eighteen months I have actually taken a sabbatical from my own work to start an online program called BRIDGES to Understanding that connects children worldwide through digital storytelling. This program, mentored by photographers, connects indigenous children with their urban contemporaries to further cross-cultural understanding, support cultural diversity and enhance communication and leadership skills. I have just returned from Dharamsala, India where we just initiated the program in the Tibetan Children's Village (the eighth BRIDGES site). If you get a chance look at the BRIDGES web site and contact me if the program resonates with you.

Davis Freeman

"The Art Environment"

Anne Gould Hauberg
Sheila Farr
Shari Behnke
Greg Kucera

The subjects for this body of work are an eclectic group of individuals who have given years of their time and effort in support of the visual arts. These photographs are my way to focus attention on the people behind the scenes, i.e., directors, curators, collectors, benefactors, administrators, who are involved in the visual arts and normally do not receive recognition. This grouping is the first for this project and is not yet the definitive look at the people behind the Northwest art scene.



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