Aaron Rothman

Aaron's Website




"My work involves the experience of seeing, and how photography functions as a translator of this experience. Landscape has for a long time been the primary focus of my artwork. I am interested in the space of the landscape, the palpability of light, and the awareness of being in relation to time. I have never been interested in simply showing particular places in a literal sense, but rather in creating images that, while retaining a direct connection to what was photographed, present their own experience of looking and perceiving. The landscape for me is a place of presence - a perceptual field that anchors a sense of basic existence."

"I purposely avoid monumental and recognizable sites, choosing to photograph anonymous and relatively mundane locations, so that the landscape can be encountered freshly and directly, not through preconceived abstractions, and so the experience of looking at the print allows for a process of discovery. The combination of specificity and anonymity speaks for a way of knowing based in direct individual perception. I want each image to function both as a perfect window onto the world and as a self-contained perceptual experience."

"I first came to Arizona in 1998 to study photogravure for a semester. I hated Phoenix and scooted off to San Francisco as soon as the semester ended. A couple of years later, however, I found myself back here for graduate school. I acquired a deep appreciation for the Arizona desert and learned to tolerate Phoenix, discovering that there is some great stuff hidden within its vast network of strip malls. After finishing school, I left Arizona for a teaching job in Tennessee. I found that I really missed the desert - the openness, the vast sky, the constant presence of the distant horizon. I even missed, just a little, the sprawl of the city. So now, despite occasional longings for a less car dependent life in some idealized progressive urban utopia, I am happily ensconced in Arizona with all the trappings of domestic bliss: house, spouse, baby and dog."