Text by Francisco Diaz
As a digital photographic artist, I have embraced the 21st century wholeheartedly, creating cinematic narrative photographic montages that speak about the road we must travel in order to lift ourselves out of states of inertia that limit our potential.
What can be accomplished photographically today is astounding. I have great respect for analog photography, but I have no ties to it. Out of my joyful embrace of the digital era came a unique vision for an International Collaboration: an inspired artistic effort wherein photographers would create work from different corners of the globe, never having met (essentially remaining total strangers), yet coming together using Facebook as a creative portal.
There is no other era in which this could have taken place. I wondered if disparate individuals from countries halfway around the world could work together in real time as a positive model for creation rather than destruction. That’s what I set out to discover. Working with artist/photographers from different cultures—focusing our energies on the creation of powerful new photographic work rather than international conflict—I thought this just might be one small step toward bringing a troubled planet closer together.
My first photographer/artist collaborator, Deb Young, is a highly talented resident of New Zealand. She has brought keen insights and an eye for crafting unique landscapes to the effort. ‘It’s a time of seeing old things in new ways,’ says Young, ‘which makes this a thrilling time for people in all corners of the world to communicate through visual language.’
Deb and I have created several compelling works but have never met. Our primary means of creative communication and discussion has been Facebook, where we have shifted that portal’s emphasis from a simple support/contact tool to one where innovative ideas can flourish.
Recently we invited a wonderful French artist/photographer, Agnes Courrault, to collaborate with us and expanded the International Collaboration to a triad. Agnes brings a superb improvisational sensibility and strong photographic images to the effort.
This International Collaboration concept is meant to be steadily, but unhurriedly expansive and positive, bringing disparate people together from different continents using Facebook as our portal, blending creative energies to design exceptional work as an example of true cooperation.
Francisco Diaz is an artist based in New Jersey, USA. He holds an MA from Adelphi University and a BA from Brooklyn College. He was one of only 3 core American artist/photographers invited to exhibit at the 2013 Ballarat International Photo Biennale in Australia. He is the first prize winner at 2010 Texas Photographic Society International Photography Competition.
Deb Young is an artist/photographer based in New Zealand. She began her creative journey with photography while working for New Zealand’s first photographic magazine — New Zealand Photography Magazine. Deb is currently working in New Zealand on an exhibition of the International Collaboration work.
Agnes Courrault is an artist/photographer living in Arles, France. She developed her photographic skills while working for many significant media outlets throughout France such as Elle and Liberation magazines. Recently she exhibited her series ‘Gal-Axis’ at the Magasin de Jouet Gallery in Arles, France.