About the Enigmata Gallery...
This gallery presents images from Witherill's most recent series titled: Enigmata. Initially begun in April 2017, the series: Enigmata combines photography, together with digital-based freehand drawing and sketching, with the intenion to produce a form of abstract digital collage consisting of a series of visual puzzles for the viewer to solve. The overall intention of the series, itself, may best be descibed through the artist statement, below:
Enigmata (Enigma) Latin:
1. a puzzling or inexplicable occurrence or situation.
At its most fundamental level, photography is a form of visual communication. The photographic medium (when used as a means to achieve personalized artistic self-expression) normally involves the photographer employing a chosen set of tools in order to communicate specific visualizations that have been individually formulated, from within. The overall goal of such visualization being, of course, to communicate the photographer’s unique and personalized aesthetic to an audience of viewers. Ironically though, in its more commonly adopted form, that perceived communication often seems to be more of a one-sided affair than it might (or perhaps could) otherwise be. Within its definition, communication implies an interchange of thoughts and ideas shared between two or more individuals, rather than presupposing a demonstrative statement made by the artist, which is then absorbed (and presumably parroted) by the viewer.
In an effort to question the nature of mutual exchange inherent (or not) in that communication – through exploration of possibilities for a more expansive and meaningful collaboration between the artist and viewer – images from the series: Enigmata have been formulated with the intention to encourage the viewer to become a more active participant in the ultimate realization and resolution of the images, themselves.
So much of what is being visually explored and presented within this series remains unrecognizable in terms of what might otherwise be interpreted as more commonly perceived objects, situations, juxtapositions, and relationships. Consequently, the overall scene remains one that has been left intentionally vague, purposefully nebulous, and in many respects, absent all but the most ambiguous sense of subjective recognition. Stray hints of reality are combined with fantasy based abstractions and visually suggestive metaphors, with the intent to create a puzzle (an enigma) that, by its nature, will require the viewer to consciously assemble, rearrange, and interpret a series of disjointed visual clues in order to form a more individually interpreted whole.
Calling upon an active imagination, past memories, and personally adopted visual sensibilities, the viewer is encouraged to complete each vision with their own unique interpretation in order to solve a series of puzzles. As such, the images, themselves, are intended to portray whatever the viewer ultimately determines they portray. By encouraging the viewer to determine the most suitable interpretation of the material at hand, the result becomes more decidedly a direct collaboration between the artist and the viewer – potentially resulting in a more authentic act of mutually shared communication.
Though clearly straying outside the bounds of a more conventional definition of photography, this series might best be described as a form of abstracted digital collage in which sketching and drawing have been combined with photography in order to create an overall assemblage that, in its final form, contains no specifically intended visual depiction and/or perceived interpretation. As such, and from a technical perspective, the best way to characterize the series, itself, will be to paraphrase Minor White’s succinct description: “The camera [and hand] were faithfully used.”
Limited Edition Prints from This Gallery
For additional information and/or to purchase Limited Edition Archival Pigment Ink Prints of any of the images contained in this gallery, click the desired thumbnail image (above) and that image will be enlarged. Hover your mouse over the enlarged image and a black overlay will appear at the bottom of the enlarged image window. Look for a text link in the lower left titled: "Purchase Prints of this image." Click that link to be taken to the "Add to Cart" page where you will find detailed information about available print sizes, edition numbers, print prices, and more. If you are having trouble accessing the "Add to Cart" pages using a tablet, cell phone, or other mobile device, please click here.