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Jon Malis
Base Landscapes
April 3 - 26 2015
Kodascope Screen No. 0
Kodascope Screen No. 0

Drawn from physical viewing surfaces, precise test charts, neglected scientific specimens, and ambiguous memories, Jon Malis’ work centers around concepts of presentation and interpretation.

Malis differentiates creative visual content from presentation- (and material-) based mediation of visual information by testing inconsistencies in our processes of perception: patterns, shadows and imperfections mar surfaces of slide projection screens expected to be blank/light pollution and mishandling changes the visual landscape of unexposed photographic paper/technological limitations prevent the viewing of true-color photographs in an online environment/color calibration and test charts fade from their true values over time.

Base Landscapes takes its cues from the obsolete tradition of slide projection and the prevalence of digital projection devices. It is a series of photographs documenting, interpreting, and analyzing the surfaces of used projection screens. Malis removes traces of the screens’ former functional use (projected content), including the screens themselves. In Base Landscapes, surface texture, defined by years of use or neglect that has accumulated in dirt, stains, folds and mold, transforms supposedly optically-flat surfaces. Rather than supporting blankness, the series reveals distortion through landscapes of lines, shapes, shadows and textures.

Jon Malis is an artist based in Washington, DC, and Baltimore, MD. He received his Master of Fine Arts in Film & Electronic Media from American University, and a BA from The George Washington University.

Malis has received numerous awards and recognitions, including the 2012 National Photography Award from the von Lebig Art Center (Naples, FL), a Janet & Walter Sondheim prize semi-final nomination (2014), and a Panavision New Filmmaker’s Grant (2010). He has shown nationally, including CONNERSMITH, Hamiltonian, and Honfleur Galleries in Washington, DC; Maryland Art Place, PULSE Miami and the Center for Fine Art Photography. As a cinematographer and producer, he has screened works internationally, from DC Shorts to Taos (NM) Shortz, the Rochester International Film Festival to the PFF Berlin. ?

He is an Assistant Professor of Photography at Loyola University (Maryland). Formerly, he was a staff photojournalist for ThisWeek News and the Piqua Daily Call newspaper.

Gallery talk with Judith Tannenbaum