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Artist combines old world photo process, symbols of 'Sanctuary' in Douglasville show
by Tom Spigolon
October 02, 2013 10:16 AM | 2578 views | 0 0 comments | 44 44 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Special / Timothy McCoy<br>Timothy McCoy stands with his photograph titled ‘Cloistered.’  
The photo includes an ancient religious retreat in Bruges, Belgium.
Special / Timothy McCoy
Timothy McCoy stands with his photograph titled ‘Cloistered.’ The photo includes an ancient religious retreat in Bruges, Belgium.
Georgia photography artist Timothy McCoy seeks a “radical reframing of reality,” which will be apparent in photos he will display beginning this week at the Cultural Arts Center in Douglasville.

McCoy’s “Sanctuary” series is set for a monthlong showing beginning Thursday at the Campbellton Street gallery.

McCoy, a Cumming resident and retired physician, will display 35 images during the show that demonstrate the detail he gets from using large format -- 8-inch by 10-inch – film shot by a Deardorff field camera. The photos are displayed in black and white and printed on translucent vellum on paper coated with palladium metal, which was used in the early days of photography in the early 1800s.

“This process is pretty time-consuming, but you get tremendous detail,” he said.

The result is a dramatic effect that can make the viewer feel like he or she is seeing the world through a late 1800s lens. The process makes some subjects almost glow.

The process gives his “Sanctuary” images an added dramatic effect modern, digital photography likely would not give.

Photos in the series seek to symbolize the mental images conjured by the show’s title, such as “Last Refuge - 1244,” which shows a mountaintop in southern France where Catholic crusaders cornered and killed members of the separatist Cathar religious sect in 1244 A.D., he said.

“To me, this was really a search for refuge when your ideas are worth more than life itself,” McCoy said.

Another in the series, titled “Gracie, Not Forgotten,” is a shot of an ornate headstone taken in a moss-covered Savannah cemetery.

McCoy practiced and taught medicine in San Antonio, Texas, before the late photo artist Frederick Sommer inspired him to take up photography full time, he recalled.

He is scheduled to be part of an artist’s reception for the show, formally titled “Sanctuary: Palladium Prints by Timothy McCoy,” which the Sweetwater Camera Club will host Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. at the arts center.

McCoy then is set to return Sunday from 3 to 5 p.m. to the arts center to demonstrate his complex printing process and his use of the Deardorff field camera, which dates to the early 20th century.

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