Unabridged

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Unabridged

Sandra Kaplan

Unabridged

This work depicts a 360-degree view of the Japanese Garden in the Denver Botanic Gardens. Please take a walk with me through the garden. As a painter, I hope to bring a totally immersive experience to the viewer. Sculpture or installations sometimes achieve this goal, but the seductive quality of paint has been at the forefront of my artistic imagination since the beginning of my career. To make “Unabridged,” I shot a 360-degree photographic panorama in the Japanese Gardens. The image was first photographed by shooting a large number of overlapping photos. Creating a sense of immediacy for the viewer required that I add a bit of distortion to the images. To that end, I used a close-up lens for the lower half of the image, and a wide-angle lens for the upper half. The resulting photo collage consisted of about 50 photos. The day I photographed was magical, with a pristine sky. The air was moist, and spring promised to arrive soon even as patches of snow lingered, a common event in Colorado. The colors in my painting became saturated, as a way of sharing the visual intensity of my time in the garden. “Unabridged” has been shown in the round, around a corner, and straight along the length of a wall. I like the “straight” version best, which is how the painting is installed here at the Colorado Convention Center. The “straight wall” display adds an element of time to the viewing process, inviting viewers to approach the painting as if walking through a garden, except—in this case—the garden is made with paint, color, light, and, I hope, the emotional flavor of a glorious Colorado day.

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