Marks on the Land- Aerial Photography by Tom Lamb
Through his acclaimed aerial photographs with an environmental focus, Tom Lamb captures stunning images that showcase an unexpected view of the land.
It is the relationship between Lamb’s photographs and abstract painting that is perhaps the most direct association for the viewer and one that he emphasizes in his visual compositions and in the titles of certain works.
Lamb’s introduction to the art movement known as Abstract Expressionism came while he was a graduate student at the Rhode Island School of Design in the late 1970s. During that time, Lamb assisted artist Aaron Siskind, who was well known for his own abstract photographic work. While Siskind located abstraction in extreme close-ups of urban elements such as the textures and layers of peeling paint, the build up of materials on billboards, and the gestures revealed in graffiti, Lamb achieves abstraction by pulling back and showing us bigger swatches of land, in color, from the top down. The lines, patterns, and gestures in these landscapes – some built and some natural – call to mind the abstract expressionist style and canvases of painters as varied as: Robert Motherwell, Paul Klee, Clyfford Still, Frnaz Kline, Jackson Pollock, Barnett Newman and Cy Twombly.