Jerry N. Uelsmann (American 1930-)

Although a contemporary photographer, Jerry N. Uelsmann’s artistry and talent lie in his traditionalism. A leader in photomontage, the process of joining two images together to make a new photograph, Uselmann introduces his work in black and white with a metaphysical interpretation.

Up until the mid twentieth century, the main purpose of photography was to record history prompting Uelsmann’s work to be initially negatively critiqued. Eventually Uelsmann’s marriage between the organic and artificial became widely love and recognized for its uniqueness. His work is created by fabricating composite photographs with various negatives and extensive darkroom work. Featuring familiar places with untorhodox elements, such as eyes on walls, windows on trees or shrubbery on the artificial, Uelsmann’s technique has remained untouched by technology and digital art.

Jerry Uelsmann is such a legend in darkroom processing. Just found out about Jerry Uelsmann & Maggie Taylor a few days ago. (This was before we had Photoshop & it was done in the darkroom)

While reading up on him, I came across this:

“The challenge for young people is there’s an overwhelming amount of stuff digitally, and they find a few tricks that just become visual gimmicks that they can’t survive on. But if you could digest what the technological implications and the visual implications are, and build that into some work that is humanistically driven by the artist, it has the potential of making wonderful images. Technical skills alone aren’t enough.”

I’m reminded that I should never compromise my art. Art is art and should be made for myself (unless it’s for commercial purposes).