This is Michael Rosenfeld Gallery's first exhibition of Martha Madigan's photographic work. This exhibition of large scale solar photograms from her Human Nature series explores the delicate balance between life and death, nature and culture, between turning within and turning attention to the outer world. In this series, "body prints" or photograms of life size figures, often children, are combined with elements from nature to create both color and monochromatic works.
Martha Madigan has been working with large scale solar photograms for over twenty years. The series Human Nature began in 1989. The photographic process of both the gold-toned printing-out-paper photograms as well as the "Type R" prints comprises several steps. The image begins with a solar photogram of a figure(s) printed on a contact speed paper known as "printing-out-paper." The same sheet is re-exposed again in the sunlight, usually days or weeks after the initial exposure. At this time foliage is placed (i.e., contact printed) around and within the figure(s).