“Surprise Inside” by Walter Plotnick | Awards Collective GalleryTalk
The Awards Collective was created to feature the works of artist who have received either a Juror’s Award or Director’s Award in ASG’s Online exhibitions. Walter Plotnick’s image “Limerick“ received the Director’s Award in the “portal” exhibition juried by Crista Dix. Walter’s exhibition “Surprise Inside” is discussed in this GalleryTalk.
As a child I was fascinated by single-serve cereal boxes, you would open the box along the perforated long side, pour in the milk and eat out of the open box. It was the folded mechanics of the box I was interested in. Fast forward many years later to my Surprise Inside Series…
My photographic collages serve as a metaphor for anticipation, those moments when the unknown is being revealed.
The implied act of opening the boxes, releases the occupants, allowing them to take flight. The people and objects confined within, through the simple act of unfolding, are exposed revealing what was previously hidden.
I try to convey excitement, and energy in images that are playful, expressive, and nostalgically bring the viewer back to the joyful moments of anticipation felt in childhood.
The sense of nostalgia evoked in the graphic synthesis of these images is augmented using a wash of warm sepia tones that permeate the images. There is also a visual correlation between inhabitants of the boxes and the boxes themselves. The folds of the boxes having a quality not unlike origami, is reflected in the contortionist-like bending of the human forms within.
The unusual and dissimilar combination of people and cardboard boxes is visually unified through the repetition of angles. Despite pairing such disparate elements, I bring them together harmoniously to form images with visual impact, and are frankly, fun to look at.
Walter Plotnick, 2023
Mr. Plotnick is a USA photo-based artist who lives and works in the Philadelphia, PA area. He received his MFA from University of the Arts and BFA from Tyler School of Art. Mr. Plotnick is a Senior Lecturer in the Fine Arts Department at Penn State University/Abington.