rural route two box two eighty one volume one, issue two
rural route two box two eighty one a photo zine
James Luckett &
rural route two box two eighty one is a bi-monthly zine dedicated to photo-based contemporary art. Each issue focuses on the work of two artists living and working outside of traditional art centers. This zine is committed to the dissemination of these artist’s works in order to create a dialog around the relationships between contemporary photographic practice, regional identity, and rurality. The title of the zine comes from the childhood address of the zine's editor Travis Shaffer (RR 2 Box 281). Travis and his wife/ coeditor Angela, grew up in neighboring rural communities in southwestern Pennsylvania. Travis is currently an instructor of photography at the University of Kentucky and Angela is a high school art teacher in the small town of Lancaster, KY. RR2 is released six times a year as both a free digital version via issuu.com and a hand-bound zine available for individual purchase or subscription. The hard-copy zine is 9.5” x 13” and costs 15$/ issue or 60$/ yearly subscription. For more information regarding a subscription, submission or just to stay informed, email us at email@example.com. Find us online at rrtwo.wordpress.com or follow us on facebook.
If what we see could forget us half as easily as it does itself — but for life we’ll not be rid of the leaves’ fossils. - Elizabeth Bishop A friend once said that I, “Photograph invisible things, and can show you what they look like.” It’s true; my methods aren’t ruled by what I can see. My sympathies lie with the subtle ways a lens transforms a scene, in the latent potential of a negative and in what the chemical processes of the darkroom reveals in a developing image. With these images I look to unveil the sentiment, suggestion or specter lying just beneath the surface of a person, place or object. Each photograph is a gelatin silver print selectively bleached with potassium ferricyanide and split-toned in selenium and/or thiourea toner. This inherently aleatoric craft makes each print unique; they are artifacts of practice and practical experience. It’s not the seeing I care so very much about, but the beings seen and the gravity of their being seen again.
Working over twenty years in art and photography and exhibited nationally, James Luckett has earned an MFA from the University of Arizona, worked as a master printer in a forensic photography lab and taught award winning photography classes in Tucson and Chicago. Born in Stuttgart, and following the pleasures of living and working in Olympia, Tokyo and Ann Arbor, this past year James settled his studio and darkroom in Springfield, Ohio. You can follow his interests and exploits at his long running, ever evolving, always accumulating website consumptive.org.
(opposite) The Heart, silver gelatin print, 7" x 7.062" , 2010
(opposite) Veins,, silver gelatin print, 7.062" x 7.125", 2010 (above) Somnambulist, silver gelatin print, 7.125" x 6.875", 2008
(opposite) Halogen, silver gelatin print, 7.125" x 7" , 2010 (above) Hotel, silver gelatin print, 7" x 6.875", 2008
The images of the women in these prints are taken form the classic silent film Birth of A Nation produced by D.W. Griffith in 1915. Birth of a Nation is widely noted for its cinematic inventiveness as well as its blatantly racist portrait of the South during Reconstruction. Though much attention in particular has been paid to Griffith’s romantic portrayal of the Klan, less has been said about the white female characters whose “honor” figures so highly in the film’s violent climax. Lynching in the South was often justified as a defense of the purity of white womanhood and the female characters in Birth of A Nation are indeed long suffering and pure (one of them throws herself off a cliff rather than succumb to the advances of a black man) as well as simplistic. While these characters are completely at odds with contemporary feminist sensibilities, they are also strangely beguiling – visually arresting and haunting in their vulnerability, which is largely a testament to Griffith’s skill as a filmmaker. Because much of the South remained largely rural for near to a century after the end of the Civil War, lynchings were often carried out in wooded areas, especially as the practice became less and less acceptable socially and legally (it should be noted that lynchings occurred in other areas of the U.S. as well but the majority happened in erstwhile Confederate states). The thick green of the forest provided a measure of privacy and today the tangled woods in rural areas of the South can be unsettling when thought of as the cover for brutality. In these prints, photographs of trees, all taken in central Alabama, have been digitally altered, then layered with the stills from Birth of a Nation in an attempt to connect Griffith’s filmic images of feminine beauty to their much more insidious employment as the impetus for violence. Lydia Moyer is a visual artist and media maker who lives and works in Central Virginia. She received a BFA from the New York State School of Art and Design at Alfred and an MFA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She exhibits her work regularly in the US and Europe. Currently, she directs the New Media program in the art department at the University of Virginia.
(opposite) The bitterness of ideals crushed archival inkjet print, 2006
(opposite) . Meanwhile, other fates - no. 1, single channel video loop, 2005 (above) Margaret Cameron, A daughter of the south trained in the manners of the old school, archival inkjet print,2005
(opposite) Meanwhile, other fates - no. 2, archival inkjet print, 2006 (above)Death of the news of the youngest Cameron, no. 1 archival inkjet print, 2006
(opposite) Death of the news of the youngest Cameron, no. 2, archival inkjet print, 2006 (above)Ku Klux sympathizers victims of the black mob, archival inkjet print, 2006
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rural route two box two eighty one