Headlands Center for the Arts

Meghann Riepenhoff

california | visual
Affiliate Program 2014—2015
Affiliate Program 2013—2014
Affiliate Program 2012—2013

Artist Statement

As imaging technology continues to evolve, we are regularly provided with visual references for what was previously unknown and unseen. Most emblematic of imaging the great mystery in which we exist are pictures of cosmic events, aerial images of the earth, and of the massive darkness that surrounds us. Engaging a breadth of photographic technologies, I transform mundane detritus and alter processes to recall telescopic and microscopic views. In doing so I consider the relationship between the insignificant and the immense, the sublime, impermanence, and the role photography plays in mediating the human experience.

While at Headlands

While at the Headlands, I am working on a series of unique cyanotypes. Entitled Littoral Drift, a geologic term describing the action of wind-driven waves transporting sand and gravel, the series consists of camera-less cyanotypes made in collaboration with the landscape and the ocean, at the edges of both. The elements that I employ in the process—waves, wind, and sediment—leave physical inscriptions through direct contact with photographic materials. Photochemically, the pieces are never wholly processed; they will continue to slowly respond to the changing environments that they encounter over time. As part of the larger project, I selectively re-photograph moments in the evolution of the images, and generate a series of static records of a transitory process which will potentially end in self-destruction. Perhaps where the fugitive cyanotypes are analogies for a terrifyingly fleeting and beautiful existence, the process of re-photographing them is a metaphor for the incorporation and mediation of photography in the contemporary human experience.

Selected Works

Personal Website