Sarah Van Keuren's Art

CAPTION BENEATH VISUALIZING CHI, a piece that incorporates casein

The ability to pre-visualize was considered important among photographers such as Minor White, Ansel Adams, and Edward Weston. In my post-camera work at home I am beginning to give physical form to what I imagine, as in Visualizing Chi. When I do my nightly exercises based in part on Chi Gong I begin to see different forms and colors of energy between my hands. Afterwards, as I go to sleep, I am mindful of the patterns and strange faces that emerge and dissolve behind my eyelids. In the morning I try to recover dreams and continue them in lucid dreaming. I am searching for my own personal icons that somehow unite the conscious and the unconscious.

The grey/white oval of Chi (shown above and printed through my grandmother’s lace) is one of my personal icons. It is printed in titanium white casein upon various layers of drawing, watercolor and matte black Plaka.

I like printing in casein because I can make this colloid, this suspension for dry pigment and dichromate sensitizer, in the kitchen from cottage cheese and household ammonia, and because it requires less dichromate than gum bichromate.

I extend my sincere thanks to book artist/teacher Rosae Reeder who demonstrated casein printing to my advanced non-silver class and me for many semesters at The University of the Arts. And indirect thanks to esteemed Philadelphia photographer, Don Camp, who taught casein to Rosae.

Sarah Van Keuren

Fall 2015