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October 2021

Alison Erazmus is a St. Louis based fine art and commercial photographer. As we all know, finding time in our personal and professional lives to focus on our fine art is one of the reasons to attend a residency. Alison's work is directly connected with the natural environment as one of her main artistic endeavors is cyanotypes using found natural material. She also uses her large format camera and then works with the images digitally.

On Alison's website bio she states:

I am a narrative photographer at heart. Much of my work embodies the tenets of staged photography, where objects and figures are arranged to create a fictionalized tableau. Through these staged compositions, I aim to tell a story with each photograph. Psychoanalytic theory grounds my work across several projects. In my practice, I excavate and illuminate the narratives of dreams, memories, forgotten family history, colonialism, and violence through feminist and Freudian lenses. Fittingly, the photographic process echoes psychoanalysis, a practice that reveals suppressed thoughts and neurosis. Photography is an an act of illumination, a process that documents, proves, and fixes the unseen, the intangible, and the fleeting.

A guided forest therapy walk with Val who is certified by ANTP is complimentary for those in residency longer than 2 weeks. In October 2021, there was significant rain leading to high water flooding on the Buffalo River allowing for a truly unique moment in time exploration. The water level was several feet above normal.

Sometimes there are opportunities for artists in residence to share their expertise in the form of a studio talk or small workshop with others on site from different disciplines or for guests of the retreat space. This opportunity is not guaranteed, but if you are interested in a teaching opportunity during your time we can definitely discuss promoting that in some way.

It was interesting to hear the artistic back story of Alison's work with Cyanotypes (and you can listen in to the conversation in the next blog post). The others around on that beautiful October day made delightful one-of-a-kind artwork.

Alison was working on several projects during this residency term and created numerous cyanotypes to add to her collection. You can find her shop here:

As a cat lover, Alison's work may include cats and this candid photo was snapped of an outside workspace with several of Alison's small polaroid type images that she had taken during her time in conjunction with Buttercup, one of the camp cats. Alison does a much better job of explaining her extensive project that has many images and delves into memory, narrative, and dreamscape. Watch the interview in the blog post.

Do you have a professional and fine art practice that you are balancing? Could you use some focus time to put the fine art work first with complete attention?

If so, what would you create? Often times what you think is going to take a month can be accomplished with 1 or 2 weeks. Apply today.

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