Brett Henrikson: Chaotic Forms
I was first introduced to the work of Brett Henrikson when I juried the Griffin Museum of Photography’s 20th Annual Juried Exhibition this past summer. I was drawn to his unique approach to photography (Brett’s silver gelatin prints are made from Collodion negatives) and the level of excellence he brings to his work. Each construction explores the possibility of the medium and in person, the work is stunning. Brett shares more about himself and his work:
My name is Brett Henrikson, and I’m an Artist-Photographer… artist being the most important part. Photographic processes are my hammer and chisel, as I approach the world and use visual language to understand and reinterpret being. My bodies of work vary from work about intersection of life and death, classical portraiture and nudes using the wet plate collodion process, and using the physicality of the photographic object in a new and unconventional way. I am based strongly in the craft and alchemy of the process. I believe that the hands on aspects of working in the darkroom and using film or large format gives the artist a real sense of creation over their work. That being said, I live in Pawtucket and work at my studio in Central Falls in an old mill above a loading dock, where I can blast vinyl symphonies while making prints in the red warm confines of my womb like darkroom.
I go deep into the imagination. Skin becomes metallic, and the slow nature of working in the darkroom takes on a meditative quality. I aim for the images to take on the same meditative state that the process offers me in the darkroom, a quiet intimacy, a dark beauty. Collodion is pure; it’s like having a bon fire and taking the ashes of burned branches and drawing on the sides of a cave. Some might draw running horses or portraits of man. I let the light from the fire guide my sense of mysticism into somewhere new that only exists in the ether, on the shimmering light from my darkroom trays and from behind my eyes. Now when more work is done behind the computer, working with my hands in the dark, I am without rules or limitations, and the medium is free.
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