Friday, June 17, 2011

Kathryn Loichinger


Kathryn  Loichinger

Within the span of a few weeks this winter I found myself in three most dissimilar locations; on Los Angeles’ sunny Wilshire Blvd., a dark alley on DC’s Capitol Hill and an even darker rural highway in Virginia’s Floyd County. Oddly all three places are capitols of a sort; the nation, entertainment and moonshine respectively. My purpose was actually the same for being at each. I was seeking and finding the unique result of human expression, ingenuity, character and spirit collectively called art. In LA the discovery  was the grand sculpture of Richard Serra, DC presented the provocative and lovely paintings of Laura Elkins and Floyd Co. hosted the most wonderful works of Kathryn  Loichinger; her photography.
Katie’s photos are special in their own right. They are uniquely original and stand out within any group exhibition as being true and the genuine article.  Her most interesting and appealing are her close ups and macro pieces. On this night she was exhibiting a series I call her “Red Leaf Photographs” and an album/book that collected a time lapse narrative. The books images were of a still life composed of different cheeses in the process of decomposing. I was reminded of recent works by Lexington’s Sally Mann a world class artist who Katie shares a similar esthetic and passion. It was also a comment on entropy and the ultimate loss of all things.

It wasn’t by chance that I was viewing Katie’s exhibit in Floyd Virginia. We had met several years ago at a local library where she worked as a librarian. She approached her library job in much the same way she approached her photography and she was not typical in that work either. She was upbeat, knowledgeable, always helpful and in a word beautiful.

Once before we had talked in any depth I found myself waiting in line behind a young boy. I remember him just standing looking at Katie dazed and bedazzled wanting to talk but not knowing what to say. She took it in stride and offered him suggestions for reading. We began to have short conversations and we found out that we were both involved in the arts. We have become mutual admirers and supporters of each other’s work over the years. Katie now works for Barnes and Noble where we continue to talk about the arts, politics fashion and just about everything. Katie’s a good person to know.

Katie continues to grow in life and experience and her work is all the richer for it. She uses the camera in much the same way the best musicians use their chosen instruments. Rather than producing and organizing the sounds of musical notes; Katie’s finely tuned instrument captures light and shadows as it exist around the forms, colors and compositions of nature. 

 If Katie’s photography could be described as a musical sound it would that of an oboe; mysterious, exotic, elusive and yet precise.   Largely self taught she is a gifted natural with a skill honed by a joyous dedication and a commitment to excellence.  

Katie’s wit and intelligence as expressed throughout her extensive portfolio seems to say: I have a secret that I’m willing to share, something delightful and alluring I want you to see.  These treasures are radiant, beautiful and bright; like Katie. 

Kathryn Loichinger



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