Fine Art Photography Daily

Eric Zippe: The States Project: Delaware


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence

Eric Zippe’s photographs made me think of inevitable entropy. His images of patinas have critical tensions of decay edging up to and confronting beauty. Likewise, inside Philadelphia’s Eastern State Penitentiary, he illuminates a relic of when bad ideology and good design came together. The images offer an unblinking look into individual cells in beautiful 19th century architecture. Each narrow space includes a low door, vaulted ceiling, and sliver of skylight at the back allowing for uninterrupted atonement for crimes, petty and serious alike. Eric’s work deftly captures the dark and desperate spaces and invites contemplation of the souls driven mad by the unrelenting ‘salvation’ of stone cold solitary confinement.

Eric Zippe was born into a farm family in southern New Castle County, near Clayton, Delaware. He spent his early years working on the farm and involved with various 4-H projects and activities. He received a BFA in Fine Arts from the University of Delaware, where he studied under photographers John Weiss, Priscilla Smith and Peter Croydon. Zippe has also studied with such notable photographers as Jay Maisel, Robert Llewellyn, & Arthur Meyerson.

Zippe has had a photo career best described as eclectic, working in such photographic fields as wildlife and travel photography, portraiture, commercial and sports photography, photojournalism, and digital photo retouching.  His client list includes Fila shoes, Budweiser and Mercedes Benz. Previously an adjunct faculty member at Cecil College in North East, Maryland and he is currently an adjunct instructor at the Visual Communications program at Delaware Technical Community College in Dover, Delaware.


 My involvement in fine art photography began with my formal art education. I was mentored by a protégé of Minor White and was introduced to the concepts of equivalents. Influenced by that teaching, my work is conceptually based, relying heavily on the use of found locations, subjects and objects that are then presented as equivalents. It is designed to empathetically impart thoughts and emotions, and to convey the viewer into their subconscious awareness.

Working directly in reaction to the surrounding environment and visual everyday occurrences is the starting point of my visual exploration that continues to the desired impression is captured in frame. Often these framed instances would go unnoticed in their original context and take on a minimalist or abstract quality. Once the process of photographing is concluded, I then work using various methods to hone the color, shapes and textures of the final image. Once complete the image is transferred, printed or engraved on to various substrates of paper, wood and metals. – Eric Zippe


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence


©Eric Zippe, Portals of Presence

 Patina Abstract Equivalents

©Eric Zippe,, Dirty Gertie


©Eric Zippe, Green Fade


©Eric Zippe, Luster and Rust

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