Monday, April 11, 2016


White-Handed Gibbon, 2015

Series Title: Animal Kingdom
Number of artworks at AIPAD: 2
Edition: 10 + 2APs
Size: 18" x 23"
Medium: Archival Pigment Print (Stereoscope)
Year: 2014

"Jim Naughten is an artist who understands the transformative effects that photography can have on a subject. In each of his previous projects he has been concerned with reanimating  history. His latest images of Victorian and Edwardian zoo-logical specimens continue this overarching visual enquiry  but incorporate in addition a fascinating venture into three-dimensional imaging. They are captivating enough even when  seen in two dimensions. But once you plunge into the marvel  of their stereoscopic depth you are transfixed. Through the  act of viewing, an intangible transformation takes place. While  the photographs exist in physical form on paper, they also live as an experience, a beautiful illusion held in the mind".Martin Barnes Senior Curator of Photographs, Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Animal Kingdom has just been released as a monograph by Prestel, with a book-signing at The Photography Show, on Saturday 2:00pm–3:00pm. 

Reclining Iguanadon, 2016

Series Title: Dinosaur Island
Number of artworks at AIPAD: 2
Edition: 10 + 2APs
Size: 12" x 23"
Medium: Archival Pigment Print (Stereoscope)
Year: 2016

A herd of concrete dinosaurs have stood in the improbable habitat of Crystal Palace Park (London) since 1851. The ambitious sculptures cling to the banks of a manmade lake and populate a string of small of islands. Conceived at the cutting edge of Victorian comparative anatomy, they are the earliest known attempt at creating life size dinosaur models . Despite the best efforts of their creator, Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins, they are less than perfect specimens. With no complete fossils to work from as blueprints, and some mismatches between fossil bone and species, mistakes were unknowingly made. They appear as distant, distorted cousins of the dinosaurs we recognize today.

Those familiar with the South London site get a glimpse of the sculptures at closer proximity than is achievable on a regular Sunday stroll. Naughten required special permission and the use of a small boat to reach his subject. These are photographs with a low centre of gravity. We peer through the riotously colored undergrowth not as a distant observer, but as a fellow creature or as a cautious naturalist might. Facing these concrete monuments to flawed science, one can’t help but question which elements of contemporary science will be rendered naive and inaccurate in the future, and what pictures might be made between these knowledge gaps.

Animal Kingdom and Dinosaur Island will be exhibited at the Klompching Gallery April 20–May 28, 2016. Opening reception: April 21, 6pm–8pm. 

Jim Naughten (b. 1969) is an internationally-exhibited artist, including a solo show at the Imperial War Museum (London) and inclusion in the UK's Royal Academy Summer Show (2012). He is the recipient of several awards, including a commendation from The National Portrait Gallery's Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize. His first series of photographs, Re-enactors, was published as a monograph (Hotshoe Books, 2009), with several photographs acquired by The Imperial War Museum (UK). The Hereros series was published as Conflict and Costume (Merrell, 2013). 

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