I first came across Michael Flomen’s photograms and camera-less photography in the book “Emanations: The Art of the Cameraless Photograph” by Geoffrey Batchen. Of all the camera-less works Flomen’s large scale abstract images captured my attention. The quality and role of light has the same immediacy that a lot of photograms have but without the objective subject matter of most sun prints. The abstraction in his work, coupled with the scale of the prints ( 48 inches or more ), leaves fertile ground for imagination. The images are a direct result of the environment around him, water, snow, dirt and bugs. But that landscape can’t be fully resolved. So your mind is left interpreting the shadows.
Photography, as a medium, is often definitive. The camera reflects most often what we see, or think we see. With camera-less photography and Michael Flomen’s work in particular, the image reflects the mediums ability to capture light and reelect shadow, but demonstrates that the subject matter those shadows and light make up is anything but a clear reflection.
“Under The Cover Of Darkness”, produced by UMA, La Maison de l’image et de la photographie de Montréal