Art in Context V

By Guest Blogger Rachel Swartz

It’s hard not to see shades of Rothko in Kathryn’s photographs of the sky. One of Kathryn’s favorite subjects, the horizontal rippling of color in the sunset is here represented in vibrant primary colors. Compare to Mark Rothko’s 1980 White Center, one of his later pieces; the deconstructed, raw blocks of color could seem to an abstract expressionist representation of the natural moment Kathryn captured in her piece. The jarring black line in between Rothko’s orange and white is like the crackling fire in the lower left of Kathryn’s composition; it breaks up the delineation without detracting from the power derived from the assemblage of hues. The elements in nature in Kathryn’s photograph – the lone cloud, the wood in the fire – are also related to the texture of Rothko’s painting. The painter’s hand is thus comparable to the photographer’s attention to detail; by capturing the fleeting, ephemeral natural moments in the composition Kathryn puts her own unique perspective into frame.