"Throughout history and prehistory forests have offered shelter, a hiding place, whilst also being places in which a wanderer can be ultimately lost." - John Berger
This project is about how I interact visually and emotionally with the landscape of the Pacific Northwest that I have come to call home. I have a simultaneous respect, wonder and fear of this landscape and how it can make me feel empowered and insignificant in just a single glance. It is an attempt to create images that convey the psychological space between what is real and imagined.
Between West and West
"A setting sun calls us not to look back, but forward. Today begins in the east with sunrise, but tomorrow is over the horizon in the west. A sunset makes us look west, and westward has always been the direction of promise for America."
My work investigates issues of place, time and memory by exploring how the environment in which I live and its history guides my views and perceptions. It is my goal to not only describe the world that my images depict but to use them as a point of departure. They oscillate between different influences and emotions, between the real and abstract, the overwhelming and ordinary, allowing viewers to cast a different look at the world and locate the psychological space existing within a landscape.
Chris Bennett is a photographer and photo educator based in Portland, Oregon. He received his BFA from Indiana University in 1999 and his MFA from the Hartford Art School in 2014. In 2002, Chris founded Newspace Center for Photography, a nonprofit photography center in Portland. He served as the Executive Director of Newspace until 2012 and as Gallery Director until 2014.
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