Depth of Field exhibit opens at Showcase Gallery

John ScarffeDepth of Field exhibit opens at Showcase Gallery
Central City

Two artists specializing in photography opened an exhibit called Depth of Field at the Showcase Gallery above the Visitor’s Center in Central City. Greg Wells from Coal Creek Canyon and Karl von Valtier from Columbus, Ohio, opened the show with an artist’s reception on Saturday, Nov. 2, at the Gallery from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Both artists have works shot in the Peak to Peak area but also from other places in the United States. The reception included wine and snacks, and the artworks were supremely lighted, though the Showcase Gallery is a fairly small space.
Greg Wells has been doing photography and oil painting his entire life and began photography professionally in 2006. He studied at the New York Institute in Photography, where he focused on wildlife and macro photography but since has migrated towards photographic montages and abstracts.
Many of Wells’ montages have a surrealistic or dream quality to them. His signature series are his Portals, which are intended to pull the viewer into the picture. Many use combinations of black and white photography and others use extensive manipulation to achieve added depth.
Three of the Portals displayed in the exhibit were shot from cemeteries above Central City and are beautiful, ethereal, haunting images. They include “Harvest Moon Through Magic Door,” “Magic Door on Fridge” and “Old Fort Through Magic Door.”
“My new direction is to combine painting and photography,” he said. His most recent piece “Agave Guitar,” has a photograph of a guitar with Southwest images painted into the body and around the instrument.
Wells also admits that he likes to photograph cactuses. “Ninety percent of what I paint are cactuses,” he said. He only uses images taken by himself, and they are from Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona and Michigan. His website is http://picasaweb.google.com/Gregory Wells.
Although Karl von Valtier now lives in Columbus, Ohio, he lived in the Denver and Boulder area for ten years and left in 1999. He is an avid outdoor enthusiast and sees extraordinary beauty in the ordinary.
He has a particular interest in macro photography, especially nature and outdoor scenes. He has produced a signature series of images exploring the dance between light, water and ice and how each reveals the other.
One work, called “Monster Ice,” was taken in Boulder Canyon and looks like exploding water. Von Valtier said he shot the rest of the images in 2009, and these specific images were requested for the show. “I reworked all of the images for the show with a more dramatic presentation,” he said.
Full of color and latent motion, his works include “Little Ice Flow,” Pine Branch in Ice,” “Water Color,” “Ice Shelf,” and one of his favorites, “Thorns in Ice.” His website is http://kvonphotography.net.

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