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Wildflower Sigils and Mantras: Casa Piedra Road
Daniel Chamberlin
Marfa Book Company

The images in this series were collected on a daylong drive south from Marfa, Texas on Casa Piedra Road in the spring of 2015. The season was known for a historic wildflower bloom that followed an unusually wet winter. The photos are digitally cut, pasted and collaged into sigils and mantras with the intention of warding off depression and fostering communion with the plant mind. Images are printed by Color Wheel Digital with archival inks on Hahnemuhle Bamboo paper. Prints are in unlimited addition, available at $100 and $150. 

Phone: 432-729-3906
Email: marfabookcompany@gmail.com

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The Last Marriage of Space and Time
Daniel Chamberlin
Marfa Book Company
August 28 – September 18, 2015

The Last Marriage of Space and Time is a new body of work from Marfa-based artist Daniel Chamberlin. Chamberlin’s collaged photographs of crystals and minerals are paired with text taken from J.G. Ballard’s The Crystal World (1966), including a line from Percy Bysshe Shelley’s Adonais, as quoted in the novel. The Crystal World is set in the riverside jungles of Gabon, and sits among Ballard’s natural disaster/apocalypse novels – see also: The Wind From Nowhere (1961), The Drowned World (1962) and The Drought (1964). It tells the story of a doctor traveling to a remote leper colony while contending with an environmental catastrophe in which life on Earth seems to be slowly succumbing to mass crystallization.

Chamberlin’s works feature language from the novel, and take inspiration from the designs of William Morris, the text-based work of Ed Ruscha, and the back patch textiles of the metal and punk communities. The wall hangings are printed on linen-cotton canvas; the typeface is Cloister Black, a font that originates in the early 1900s, but was adopted in the ‘80s and onward by metal bands such as Bathory, Burzum and Nails.

Prints are on linen-cotton canvas in unlimited edition. Available indefinitely from Marfa Book Company for $200. Various sizes, approximately 38 x 56 inches. Inquire with MBCo for specific dimensions.

Phone: 432-729-3906
Email: marfabookcompany@gmail.com

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The Last Marriage of Space and Time
Daniel Chamberlin
Marfa Book Company
August 28 – September 18, 2015

The Last Marriage of Space and Time is a new body of work from Marfa-based artist Daniel Chamberlin. Chamberlin’s collaged photographs of crystals and minerals are paired with text taken from J.G. Ballard’s The Crystal World (1966), including a line from Percy Bysshe Shelley’s Adonais, as quoted in the novel. The Crystal World is set in the riverside jungles of Gabon, and sits among Ballard’s natural disaster/apocalypse novels – see also: The Wind From Nowhere (1961), The Drowned World (1962) and The Drought (1964). It tells the story of a doctor traveling to a remote leper colony while contending with an environmental catastrophe in which life on Earth seems to be slowly succumbing to mass crystallization.

Chamberlin’s works feature language from the novel, and take inspiration from the designs of William Morris, the text-based work of Ed Ruscha, and the back patch textiles of the metal and punk communities. The wall hangings are printed on linen-cotton canvas; the typeface is Cloister Black, a font that originates in the early 1900s, but was adopted in the ‘80s and onward by metal bands such as Bathory, Burzum and Nails. 

Prints are on linen-cotton canvas in unlimited edition. Available from Marfa Book Company for $200. Various sizes, approximately 38 x 56 inches. Inquire with MBCo for specific dimensions.

Phone: 432-729-3906
Email: marfabookcompany@gmail.com

2-House-of-Jewels 3-Coruscation 4-Blind-Eyes 5-Gauntlet 6-Dripping-Forest   8-Sprouting-Needles 9-Haloes 10-Colder 11-Dome 12-Slack-Shallows

Ecstatic Camouflage found its physical manifestation through the gracious assistance of Dustin Pevey, Ross Cashiola, Alexsandra Annello, Jeff Elrod; and Caitlin Murray and Tim Johnson of the Marfa Book Company.  I was on duty with Marfa EMS while conducting the installation: Marfa is a small town and the EMS station is just around the corner from the gallery, though that didn’t keep me from anxiously double-checking my radio every five minutes or so. Thanks also to Ballroom Marfa and the Big Bend Sentinel for their support. All photos by Alberto Thomas Halpern.

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Friday, March 9th, 6 – 8 PM @ Marfa Book Company

Exhibition: Marfa artist and photographer Daniel Chamberlin will be presenting new works in his “Ecstatic Camouflage” series for a brief, three day show that coincides with Tonalism, an all night ambient film and music event presented by dublab and El Cosmico.  (Tonalism features a new, temporary installation by Adam Bork, live projections by CINEMARFA, and music by Sun Araw and J D Emmanuel, and more.)

The Marfa Book Company will host an exhibition of new works by Marfa-based artist Daniel Chamberlin entitled “Ecstatic Camouflage” this weekend, March 9 – 11, with an opening for the artist on Friday, March 9th from 6 – 8 pm.

According to the artist, “Ecstatic Camouflage is an explicitly psychedelic post-landscape photography.”  In deed, these photographs make a break with tradition and do not call to mind the work of Ansel Adams, Eliot Porter, Robert Glenn Ketchum, or Richard Misrach, though, ostensibly, they share the same subject.  The break may at first seem technical, a consequence of new technologies for manipulating images, but on further study, it becomes evident that it’s something else.  For Chamberlin, that word is psychedelic or shamanistic.

“It is a post-landscape photography that explodes anthropocentric notions of perspective by way of repetition and rotation, an organic visual drone.  It is an attempt at revealing my communion with the so-called “plant mind” of shamanistic lore.”

Several of the photographs in “Ecstatic Camouflage” were taken locally, in the Chisos Basin, and the Davis Mountains.  Viewers may not immediately recognize these places however, and not just because the artist avoids iconic, monumental treatments for his subjects. In fact, the photographs resemble mandalas or yantras rather than icons or monuments.  Curiously, his technique, involving minimal post-camera manipulation, does not hide the changes he makes, but demonstrates them openly. In the kaleidoscopic image that results from his repetitions and rotations, horizon lines vanish; trees and flowers, divide or merge; water appears throughout the surface; and the sky turns inward.

For his exhibition at the Marfa Book Company, Chamberlin chose ten pieces from an archive of hundreds of raw photographs taken in the Southwestern and South Central United States.  The pieces selected are ink jet prints on canvas and range in size from three by four, to four by five feet in dimension.

Daniel Chamberlin was born in Indiana, and lived for twelve years in Los Angeles before moving to Marfa.  He was a contributing editor to Arthur Magazine. He is a nationally registered EMT and currently works for Marfa EMS.

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