Re: Edmund Teske and solarization
Can't say I knew him but I did meet him at the San Diego SPE
conference way back - he was one of my heroes during grad school. And
yes, he seemed odd. But who wasn't?
On Oct 1, 2007, at 10:52 AM, Christina Z. Anderson wrote:
Last night I went through a great book on Edmund Teske--Spirit into
Matter, the Photographs of Edmund Teske. It had some wonderful
examples of his solarized prints, including a comparison of a
couple of non-solarized and then solarized of the same image.
We talked about Teske solarizations starting back in maybe 2005--
and Grace Taylor graciously sent me some articles that she had in
Teske's work really speaks to me, personally--it is evocative, and
he was a man doin' his thing at a time it wasn't quite respected.
In fact, he did his first solarization in 1958. But then in the
60's stuff started being a bit more experimental. Suffice it to
say in imagery and process he was ahead of his time. Apparently
Getty has a lot of his work.
These are the process notes (below) I have on Teske that I put in
my Chromoskedasic chapter in the Experimental Workbook. However,
in retrospect, I really should not have put them in that chapter
because his process is really what I call "painting with light"
where you only partially fix the print and then expose it to strong
light and let the colors appear until they look good and then fix
fully. Chromoskedasic uses chemistry to achieve the colors
(ammonium thiocyanate and potassium hydroxide). However, it is
possible since he is not draining well between steps that there is
still some chemical contamination between developer and stop and
fixer that occurs, I suppose.
This is on my mind because my class did the gang lab sabattier this
week with Rainwater developer (thanks Judy) and duotone sabattier
with the potassium bromide added to the second tray. They got some
great work immediately, and even though you can press a button in
Photoshop to achieve similar effects, it is just not the same as
the darkroom way, IMHO.
Directions: Make a high contrast print with a 4 or 5 filter.
Develop in regular paper developer until the image appears. Place
the print without draining immediately in stop bath (1 part 28%
Kodak acetic acid stop to 32 parts water) for one second.
Immediately drain and put in a fixer bath for one second (1 part
fixer to 6 parts water). Then, lay the print on a flat surface and
expose to bright light (150w for 20 seconds 2 feet away). When the
colors look right, fix, wash and dry as per usual.
The writing in the Teske book is also worth reading, too,
especially for alt listers into the handmade.
Anyone here know him? Steve Shapiro? I guess he was a pretty odd
Christina Z. Anderson
Assistant Professor, Photo Option Coordinator
Montana State University, VCB 220
Bozeman Montana 59718