Sunday, August 24, 2003

  Unconventional underwater photographer Connie Imboden uses water's reflective and reshaping faculties along with a supply of mirrors, light sources and nude models to concoct gutsy phantasmagorias. By colliding the realities of three para-aquatic planes she performs painless dissections, incisions and extractions, and arrives at forms and figures that are wild, tantalizing and engrossing. While hovering above water, transfixed at its very surface, or suspended in it, body parts glide in and out of each other, clasp in outrageous embraces, fold and undulate. Water repels, steers, and cradles them. Yet, gnawing at the water's viscosity, bursting through it, Imboden's subjects are far from amphibian.

Photograph by Connie Imboden Photograph by Connie Imboden

Imboden's photography is playful, wicked, shrewd, opulent. It is a slow, savoring study of the topology of the human body. She concedes "there is nothing more seductive or more repulsive to us than flesh." In my view, gracefulness has an upper hand over grotesqueness in Imboden's imagery.

Some of the photographer's earlier work is reminiscent of nude abstractions by Bill Brandt , Andre Kertesz, and Edward Weston, while the speckled, fragmentary layering in Imboden's latest photographs invokes some of Michal Macku's gellage works.
Photograph by Connie Imboden Photograph by Connie Imboden

Plentiful information, including video interviews, photographs, and reviews, is located at Connie Imboden's site. Additional images are available at Urban Desires. Several other memorable photographs are part of a newspaper article from 2000, connected with the release of one of her books, "Beauty of Darkness".

Photograph by Brian Oglesbee

Another photographer who explores the permutations of nude bodies in water is Brian Oglesbee. His compositions and camera angles are, perhaps, less daring and bizarre than Imboden's. But Oglesbee makes greater use of the changes in the water's surface and its movement - ripples, bubbles, etc. His inclusion of foliage in the equation is also interesting.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?