Photography West Gallery

Women's Photography Alcove



Olivia Parker

About the Photographer

After graduating from Wellesley College in 1963 with a degree in Art History, Olivia Parker began her career as a painter. She became intrigued with photography in 1970. Mostly self-taught in photography, she usually constructs what she photographs in the studio. Her photographs are fundamentally still life inspired by those painted in the traditional Dutch, Flemish and Spanish 17th century style, with their torn petals, sumptuous but imperfect fruit and improbable insects. Parker feels that photographic still life is still an open arena precisely because of those intrinsic qualities of this contemporary medium that distinguish it from painting. She says that the expression of the classical ideals of form is "dead matter" because the objects she chooses to photograph, whether alive or dead, are instead all signs of life. She is drawn to the implication of visual edges; the swollen limits of a ripe pear touching a hard line or light downy feathers, confined by a metal grid. Her photographs ask viewers to continually evaluate their meaning by never truly defining where the eye comes to rest.

Olivia Parker has had more than a hundred one-person exhibitions in the United States and abroad, and her work is represented in several major private, corporate and museum collections. She has exhibited at the Art Institute of Chicago, Museum of Modern Art in New York, Museum of Fine Arts - Boston and International Museum of Photography at the George Eastman House. There have been three monographs of her work published (Godine and New York Graphic Society).

Photography West Gallery inventories early vintage prints produced in small limited editions from Olivia Parker's pre-digital period, that are either silver halide, split toned or dye transfer.

Olivia Parker - Original Photographs

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