For New Work, Thomas Jackson presents an ongoing series of photographs that explore the tension between ourselves and the natural landscape. Each photograph features large-scale, kinetic, site-responsive installations Jackson creates out of mass-produced cultural objects placed within an array of locations from California to the Isle of Man. Inspired by self-organizing, emergent systems in nature such as locust swarms, schools of fish and bird murmurations, the installations attempt to tap the mixture of fear and fascination that those phenomena tend to evoke, while creating an interplay between the natural and the manufactured, and the real and the imaginary. Photographed on 4 x 5" film and printed with little to no digital intervention, each piece is an experiment in juxtaposition, an attempt to create something that is simultaneously in harmony and in conflict with its surroundings, mirroring our own struggle to achieve a sustainable equilibrium with the unbuilt landscape.
Jackson says of his work, “I have struggled with the role of Photoshop in my work. I can’t make my images without it, yet I don’t really want it to be an integral part of my creative process. So I’ve set up some rules of the road for myself, and I’ve stuck to them while creating all my recent images. Basically, I want the images to be as ‘in camera’ as possible, so instead of employing PS to composite or move things around, I simply use it to remove elements I don’t want to be there. So on the spectrum between ‘retouched image’ and ‘real time image’, I’ve strived to make it closer to the latter.”
Thomas Jackson was born in Philadelphia, PA and received a B.A. in History from the College of Wooster. His work has been shown at select museums and institutions: SFO Museum, San Francisco, CA; The Bolinas Museum, Bolinas, CA; Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design, Milwaukee, WI; Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, MI; Center for Contemporary Arts, Sante Fe, NM; United Photo Industries, Brooklyn, NY, Boston, MA and Atlanta, GA; The Center for Photography at Woodstock, Woodstock, NY; Project Basho, Philadelphia, PA; The Center for Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO; Fort Wayne Museum of Art, Fort Wayne, IN; The Print Center Annual Auction, Philadelphia, PA; Southeast Museum of Photography, Daytona Beach, FL; among others. Jackson is the recipient of numerous awards and residencies including: CENTER Curator's Choice Award, Second Place (2014); ONWARD Compé ‘14, juror's award winner (2014); Wondrous Indeed, Center for Fine Art Photography, Juror's Selection (2014); The National, Fort Wayne Museum of Art, Juror's Merit Award (2014); Art Takes Paris, See.me, winner of “Photography” category (2013); PDN The Curator, winner of “Installation/still-life” category (2013); Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts, Brush Creek, WY (2013); Critical Mass Top 50 (2012). His work is in the collections of Rotch Library at MIT, Cambridge, MA and The Center for Photography at Woodstock, NY, as well as many corporate and private collections.
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