A unique exhibit is at the Ranger Station Art Gallery this month. They aren’t photographs, although they once were. And they aren’t sculptures, although they are three-dimensional.
Rather, husband and wife duo Michael and Jutta Schulz are showing a series of photographic images printed on metal.
As per the show’s title, the final works are “abstract, minimal, and colourful.”
“We’re moving away from the usual photography, documenting ‘as seen,’ which is seeing with your eyes, and moving towards something different,” said Michael. “Where what you see with your eyes is only a small portion of what you see in a photograph.”
The Rosedale-based couple photographs the natural world in B.C., mostly in Agassiz, Chilliwack, and Manning Park. They then send the images to a California company that prints them on aluminium sheet metal about an inch thick. The company also injects colour into the works before giving them a final clear coat glaze.
“The colours stand out much better. They just pop,” said Michael. “We read about it once, saw it in a magazine, and we just got hooked right away. We saw the quality, and the colours, and we just got hooked.”
The couple is now “evolving” into a new artistic area. They are trying to rekindle the feeling of beauty that people can sense when looking at images of nature.
“We believe that many landscapes and many photographs are taken over and over again, and we wanted to do something different. We wanted to evolve and just get better at things, and tried to involve people,” said Michael.
The images are all-natural and unadjusted.
“We don’t use any photoshop, or photo editing, to change anything. So whatever you see there was taken with a camera, and then just cropped for size to make it print ready. We don’t do any fancy filters or distortions, or things like that. What we saw, and what the sensor captures, that’s what we show.”
Because the original images are highly detailed, and transformed through the printing process, the final results are colourful abstract art pieces. Everyone sees something different in the works, said Michael.
This is the couple’s second solo exhibit at the gallery. Kent Harrison Arts Council board president Rebecca Schram says that visitors strongly responded to the beauty of the works in the first show, and many wanted to know more about how the pieces were made. Schram finds the works very pristine and beautiful.
“The way they (Michael and Jutta Schulz) will present water, it’s very painterly. They are really bridging the gap between photography and fine arts and abstract art,” she said.
The exhibit is on from Aug. 1 to 30, at the Ranger Station Art Gallery (98 Rockwell Drive) in Harrison Hot Springs.
A reception will be held on Sunday, Aug. 11, at 2-4 p.m.