Dana L. Walker

artist statement

As a child, fairy tales and children’s books such as Alice in Wonderland, 1960’s TV shows such as Outer Limits and Twilight Zone provided creative inspiration. I was drawn to adventures in which the main character could travel or be transported from one world to another simply by falling into a hole or stepping through a “looking glass.” With a 1960s episode of the Twilight Zone called “Little Girl Lost,” [in which a little girl falls out of bed and through a portal to the 4th dimension; her parents can hear her crying but can’t find her in the house], I became fascinated with the notion that one could not only move between two worlds but, at least abstractly, occupy two spaces at once and as a result, I used to walk around the house with a hand-held mirror pointed up at the ceiling, walking through both real and reflected spaces, maneuvering through a re-imagined space filled with inverted ceiling structures, doorways, lights, in a sense, existing in two places at once.

The first time I saw Mark Rothko color-field paintings (around the age of 10), I felt this same fascination… the luminescent colors transported me to another place filled with a sense of awe ...remnants of past, present, future.

In the reflected spaces series, single-exposure images are composed and photographed through the lens – no digital manipulation or multiple exposures were used to create them. Viewers perceptions are altered through new perspectives and compositions.

The constructed spaces series explores the creation of new narratives and re-imagined space through photo collages and through mixed media pieces created out of found objects. The photo collages continue the study of reflected spaces by re-imagining space, altering viewers perceptions, often through a literal reflection of the image using Adobe Photoshop.

The abstract spaces series started as an experiment in spontaneity and randomness; the series has evolved and continues themes of re-imagined spaces and altered perspectives referenced in both the reflected spaces and constructed spaces series. abstract spaces explores Abstract Expressionism – especially the dynamic gestural paintings of Franz Kline and the expressive color-field paintings of Mark Rothko. The series also challenges the boundaries of what “photography” is. [All photos in the abstract spaces series are single-exposure digital images; they have not been altered or manipulated.]

The [unconscious spaces] lost time series began in late November 2011 after a “syncopal episode” in which I fainted, sustained a lip laceration and three broken vertebrae in my neck. My lip and vertebrae have healed, however, I’m left with no memory of the actual event - I remember the before and the after, but can’t recall the event. As a result, I became a bit obsessed with the notion of lost time, creating images based on fragments of imagined memory that explore the duality of existing in two places at once: conscious and unconscious spaces.

The measured spaces series focuses on the mundane – familiar environments or often the same rooms over time are photographed. As large-scale still lifes, these images take on poetic form, providing intimate portraits of the spaces.

© Dana L. Walker, 2017

All images are copyrighted and may not be used without permission.