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March 01, 2004

From the Email Bag: ZoneZero and the Arts in West Texas

I've done my share of bitching and moaning about the quality of photographic reproduction on the web relative to other more established media, and Gordon Coale sent me a long and thought-provoking email to call me on some of the issues I raised. One of the many good things he brought up (or reminded me of) was the presence of the excellent ZoneZero site:

"I discovered ZoneZero in 1996. It was put together by Pedro Meyer. Pedro lives in Mexico. It's pretty hard for Mexicans and South American photographers to get exposure. He felt that the cost to put together a book, or get into a magazine, or have a show in a gallery, was beyond the means of a lot of talented photographers. So he started ZoneZero to provide that exposure. ZoneZero provides a chance to see photographers that you will never see in magazines or books. The reasons Pedro did ZoneZero are the same for photographers all over the world. Getting someone to see your work, even if it is on a 72dpi screen, is better than it not being seen at all."

Can't argue with Gordon on that point. I'd been aware of ZoneZero and had been very impressed every time I visited, but I hadn't paid a visit in a while...wow, there is so much good work on there. When I started this blog, I was sure that one of my posts was going to be titled "Why Black and White Photography is So Awful on the Web", as I've had some pretty strong opinions on the subject for a while...but guess what, ZoneZero does a pretty amazing job with many of its portfolios...presentation of content, navigation, quality of the images, artist statements, articles...it is a truly high quality operation in every aspect. So thanks Gordon, for reminding me to revisit and check it out more regularly.

I couldn't even say where to start on ZoneZero...the site seems designed to encourage random browsing and sernedipitous encounters with numerous unknown artists with substantial talent and vision. On my last visit, I did encounter the portfolio of Rosa Revsin, who has a photoessay of black and white images, "There Is A Country", a tribute to the texts of Mexican novelist Juan Rulfo. Rulfo has already inspired high quality photography by Josephine Sacabo (click on Susana San Juan on her home page), but Revsin has authored a fine tribute of her own.


Rosa Revsin image, from "There is a Country"

And there's much, much more to check out on ZoneZero, which recently celebrated its 10th anniversary, so go check it out.

Also from my email bag, Ray Esposito has taken advantage of Typepad's userfriendliness to create his own blog about photography and art in Alpine, Texas. As I indicated in a comment to one of his posts, all he needs are some photographs, his own and those of the fine artists he works with in West Texas. Ray has good tastes in art and photography, and it's good to see more blogs emerging that explore the aesthetics of photography from various viewpoints.

10:30 PM | Permalink


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