Winona Barton-Ballentine

Bagel Maker’s Window, Vermont, 2011

When you look at the photos taken by Winona Barton-Ballentine you are instantly swept into a world that is all encompassing. From bands like Animal Collective and Beach House and glowing fashion models to the stark landscapes of old industrial towns, farms, campers, and textiles resembling the organic matter she thoughtfully placed on them. As diverse as her subject matter may be, it is easy to see a connection in all her images: a shared life and resilience to all things that survive under the same sun (which happens be how she almost exclusively uses to light her work).

Lyoka, 2008

Lyoka, 2008

Melons with Senegalese Fabric, Arles, 2012, Risograph Print

Melons with Senegalese Fabric, Arles, 2012, Risograph Print

Jessica's Wall, Clayspace, 2012

Jessica’s Wall, Clayspace, 2012

Winona’s photographs can be seen on the Clay Space 1205 website.  Her sensitivity and keen eye for detail give a glimpse into the life of the urban potter.

Kiln Cookies, Clayspace, 2012

Kiln Cookies, Clayspace, 2012

Pottery with Polaski, Clayspace, 2012

Pottery with Polaski, Clayspace, 2012

After six years of working in commercial and fashion photography, she found herself being called to focus on other issues. Her hometown of Binghamton, NY had found itself in the middle of the fracking debate and Winona became eager to use her talents to highlight this issue and others. She enrolled in grad school and began a whole new artistic journey.

“I started thinking a lot about rocks, because the fracking happens though the shale,… and that’s I think when the idea of clay came in. There’s a relationship between the two things; both fracking and ceramics involve a collision of human and geological energy that leads to something new and useful.”

Winona often incorporates nature into her work, fallen leaves, a wave receding back into the sea, or the side of rock shelf.  Although they may sound common place, to view them though her lens transforms them into something close to divine.  Her connection with nature even translates to her method of printing.  Winona will sometimes choose to print using a handmade soy ink digital mimeograph.   A labored process that leaves her with books pressed with a real tangible life to their slightly raised images.

Market Merch, 2012, Risograph Book

Market Merch, 2012, Risograph Book

Her creative voyages, well documented on her website, show a deep desire to take in and appreciate the world at large. The thought provoking, evocative details of her work will no doubt leave her viewers longing for more.

Safely Lost, Ithaca, 2010, Risograph Book

Safely Lost, Ithaca, 2010, Risograph Book

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