Public Giving and Outreach
10% of every sale is to be donated to non-political and secular non-profit organizations. Partnering publicly, however, with the organizations I have chosen to work with, requires a minimum donation amount that I have yet to reach. In my view, engaging in commerce, especially creatively based commerce, and not offering a tithe of compassionate humanity to others is as vacuous as it is callous. Selfishness has illuminated our present time, and defined itself in our shared stories of human societal enterprise, personality, and history. Let’s change that together.
Photo Process and Concepts
Every image in “The European Portfolio” 35mm film hand developed prints” were developed in the old and complicated many stepped color process. Cheap materials were used; expired film, expired chemicals, a bathtub, aluminum basting pans for washing, cheap hardware store piping for water temperature regulation and a healthy amount of homemade nonsensical accoutrements.
The art is meant to be quick, fast, ugly, dirty. A very grainy photocopier scanner was employed at the lowest resolution to scan the darkroom processed enlarged negatives. The idea of the Europe portfolio was to show an unaltered, noisy, over-saturated, washed out and granular look at the lack of human presence and the admiration of the beauty created by humans, through a fragmented and blurry worldview. It shows the modern solitude we feel when surrounded by people. The images have been crystallized with an old and broken Minolta SRT 202 camera, a Canon Canonet, a Minolta x-700 and lenses diffused with vaseline and pantyhose. Some lenses were stuck on one aperture and required very creative methods for taking a proper exposure, others showed scratches and cracks. Very few attempts to remove dust, or damage to the scan was ever attempted. The should be seen beautifully through an ugly and broken lens. The only hope of the work is to somehow retain the faded analog charm of our collective human beauty and complication.
The idea of this portfolio was to pull and stretch the low quality images as hard as possible, where they are washed-out, noisy, unclear, grainy, and pixelated when viewed up close. It is meant to expresses how difficult we must stretch our personal lenses to find beauty and only at a distance relative to our experience.
“We have to find the beauty at a distance, almost in retrospect, as a close examination shows the flawed architecture of humanity, in truth, as subjectively beautiful in its rawness and grit.”
No image will ever be reproduced more than 550 times. (Each print size only 110.) Once the 550 copies have been printed, all negatives, and digital images of the print will be destroyed. All prints are numbered, signed, printed by JPH Vargas personally. All come with a certificate of authenticity and matching unique hologram. The prints are delivered, un-matted, in 4 inch tubes gently rolled and wrapped in archival sheets. (Instructions on unrolling will be included)
Absolutely no effort was made in digitally cleaning or altering any image. However, older traditional dodging, burning and tinting techniques have been employed on occasion for vignetting and adding tint. They are only meant to show the “art brut” side of the medium which Vargas considers forgotten, scratches and all. They are shown as he saw those moments.
*If a patron purchases more than one print, each will be shipped separately*
*Only one print will be shipped per 4 inch tube*