Mark Kimber - Edgeland
Exhibition: 1 October to 1 November, 2008
EDGELAND, Mark Kimber's latest body of work, continues his fascination with the borders of suburbia; carparks, industrial buildings, shadows and signs. In his earlier work SUN PICTURES (Stills Gallery, 2007) Kimber used a plastic 'Diana' camera to capture these scenes. The visual qualities that a rough plastic lens, two apertures (sunny and cloudy) and one shutter speed impart ably transformed objects and places into vignetted and illusionistic scenes.
Kimber is compelled to find "situations where the play of light, form and landscape converge in time and space to create an elusive and ephemeral piece of theatre." To produce EDGELAND he changed cameras, this time using a high definition model and shooting at dusk, the edge of the day. The intense colour of the twilight sky mixes with the artificial lights of the night. The car parks, containers and buildings become poetic summaries of themselves. The street and building lights that proliferate in his scenes are like beacons, calling our attention to details, which we would, in the bright light of day, disregard. Despite the lack of human actors, the lights suggest a stage waiting for the performers to return, with the sun.
In Truck Stop - South Road, a scene reminiscent of a Jeffrey Smart painting, the ghostly lines of a thousand truck tyres flow quietly in an arc under the sole street- light. In Back door - Mile end, a door seems to offer a range of possibilities for the next person to pass through it; a ladder to climb up, a white arrow to follow or - under the humming fluoro light - a podium on which to stand and ponder. In both of these works, a deep blue twilight sky hovers theatrically over the scene below. Like the American photographer Garry Winogrand, Kimber has always been fascinated with camera "sight", the marvellous alchemical process of shifting 3D matter into 2D imagery.
Mark Kimber is Head of Photography and New Media at the South Australian School of Art, University of South Australia. His work is held in various public and private collections including the National Gallery of Australia, Art Gallery of SA, Artbank, Art Gallery of WA, Parliament House collection, Waverley City Art Gallery, Albury Regional Gallery and the London Institute.