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Phil Douglis | all galleries >> Galleries >> Gallery Two: Travel Incongruities > The haunting field, di Rosa Preserve, Napa Valley, California, 2007
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The haunting field, di Rosa Preserve, Napa Valley, California, 2007

Photographs are forbidden in the sprawling galleries on the di Rosa Preserve, but visitors are allowed to make images of the many contemporary sculptures that are placed around the vast estate. These hands reach incongruously from the earth as reminders of our mortality. In color, the image was too real and less haunting. By converting it to black and white, it becomes even more incongruous and unsettling.

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Phil Douglis02-Jul-2007 20:30
I agree -- the spookyness could be intensified if I had visited this museum at dawn or dusk, when the angle of light was low. But the museum was not open to us at dawn or dusk-- so overhead lighting had to suffice here. Glad you see how incongruities can work to stimulate both the intellect and the emotions. If it can do this, it can also have a major impact on the imagination as well. The intellect, emotion, and imagination are most certainly inter-related.
Guest 02-Jul-2007 20:13
This photo does an excellent job of teaching your students how incongruencies exist not only to stimulate intellect, but emotions as well. That being said, I feel like the spookiness of this photo would have been enhanced with side-lighting, creating harsh contrasts throughout the photo.
Phil Douglis24-Jun-2007 18:56
You are right, Mo. I often dwell on the the mysteries of life. On the other hand, I tried to balance that with images of vitality, optimism, and energy on this trip, and every trip. Look at the spiritual side of life at And at the energy and tension of the natural world at And at the whimsical nature of life imitating life at Or the world of the wired at Or even the two images that follow this one here in my incongruity gallery -- all of these images celebrate life. The key is balance -- I want to examine both sides, and do so in thought provoking ways.
monique jansen24-Jun-2007 10:04
You took quite a few spooky photos during this trip, a lot of photos suggesting abandonment, hopelessness, fragility, loneliness, emptiness, mortality, fear...
Phil Douglis19-Jun-2007 23:20
Yikes, indeed! I did have the same feeling about this scene. It is spooky, and I used black and white to render it more so. The color shot looked too beautiful.
Carol E Sandgren19-Jun-2007 21:51
Yikes! Seems like hands reaching out from the grave! Certainly an image for a film noir flick. Nicely seen!
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