Kate Breakey

Kate Breakey

Kate Breakey
About Kate Breakey: Kate Breakey is internationally known for her large-scale, richly hand-colored photographs including her acclaimed series of luminous portraits of birds, flowers and animals in an ongoing series called Small Deaths published in 2001 by University of Texas Press with a foreword by noted art critic, A. D. Coleman. Since 1980 her work has appeared in more than 95 one-person exhibitions and in over 50 group  exhibitions in the US, France, Japan, Australia, China, and New Zealand. Her work is held in many public institutions including the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson, the Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego, the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston, the Wittliff Collections at Texas State University in San Marcos, the Austin Museum of Art, the Australian National Gallery in Canberra and the Osaka Museum in Osaka, Japan. Her  third book, Painted Light, published by the University of Texas in 2010, is a career retrospective that encompasses a quarter century of prolific image making. Her collection of photograms, entitled 'Las Sombras / The shadows' was published by University of Texas Press in October 2012.   This series is a continuation of her lifetime investigation of the natural world which in her own words is ‘brimming with fantastic mysterious beautiful.  A native of South Australia, Kate moved to Austin, Texas in 1988. She completed a Master of Fine Art degree at the University of Texas in 1991 where she also taught photography in the Department of Art and Art History until 1997. In 1999, she moved to Tucson, Arizona. In 2004 she received the Photographer of the Year award from the Houston Center for Photography. She now regularly teaches at the Santa Fe Photographic workshops, and The Italy ‘Spirit into Matter’ workshops.     About Orotones, by Kate Breakey:  Most photographers have seen Orotones- first made in the early 20th century by, amongst others,  Arthur Pillsbury and Edward Curtis.  Curtis developed this technique because he wanted his photographs to have more depth - and they certainly do,- they glow.  I was struck by the beauty and brightness-  and this depth created by the light bouncing off the gold,  so a few years ago I decided to do a modern version of the Orotone.  I had an image printed digitally on UV ‘Art glass’ and I applied gold-leaf to the back of it.  I’ve since make over 200 of these.    Ive been an artist (photographer) for nearly 40 years now and so I have many thousands of images - - until recently they are analogue- (black and white film, not digital)   I have been looking over my inventory of images and picking negatives that I am interested to see transformed with this process. The images I select are from many places and times and from many past bodies of work.  I shoot all the time, wherever I go, often without anything in mind except to document my life and my observations .  Because I got so busy with my large and often labor intensive hand-colored work, I have had to ‘file’ most of my negatives and so I had forgotten about many of these images that I’m just now rediscovering .  It’s been very satisfying to give older images a new life.  This work is quite eclectic because the selection includes, classical still life, landscapes, nudes –as well as all my various biological series – animals and flowers,  but combined they make for a random visual diary of a lifetime of ‘looking’. The goldleaf, unifies it all- makes them ’precious’ and preserves the memory of the occasion of making the original image. Memories that now glow and shine after being for so long forgotten.    I became interested in the science of gold and, like much of science – especially astrophysics - I find it mindboggling and beautiful, - so much so that I want everyone to know about it so I’ve attached this brief explanation about the origins of gold on the back of the work.  “The Element Gold, (Au) can only be made in the nuclear reactor of stars. It came to our planet when the Earth was first forming, as dust from catastrophic astronomical events –stars imploding and ejecting energy, as light and matter. The events that produce most of the gold in the universe are called ‘Gamma Ray Bursts’.  This occurs when a double star consisting of two neutron stars collapses under the force of gravity.  Neutron stars are the cores of dead stars.  They are only a few miles in diameter; so dense that every last bit of matter has been compressed down to the density of the atomic nucleus.  The two dead, dark stars spin around each other for millions of years at millions of miles per hour, constantly pulling each other closer. Then finally they touch.  At that moment more energy is released than the rest of the universe combined. Much of their mass collapses into a black hole and leaves our universe forever, but the rest is released in an enormous explosion of gamma rays and newly- formed elements.  Some of that star- dust flung into space, is gold.  The gold in the Earth’s crust was carried here on asteroids that hit the earth, during the ‘Late Heavy Bombardment‘ 3.8 billion years ago when the Earth gained most of its mass.” I’ve tentatively called the series ‘Golden Stardust”  Here, it seems the addition of gold to a collection of earthly settings is quite literally universal. Gold, and its violent cosmic beginnings, create a 'dust to dust' moment within Breakey's series — at once denoting the preciousness of life while foreshadowing the inevitability of its passing. While Breakey is no stranger to creating images concerning death, in this case the death of otherworldly suns, Golden Stardust also concerns transformation and perspective as the implosion of celestial bodies yields something new, something cherished, something rare here at home. In this way, Golden Stardust acts as an affirmation of the ephemeral natural beauty present all around us. As objects, the framed prints in Golden Stardust are exquisite. Especially in a dimly lit settings these prints these prints seem to radiate from within, projecting a warm hue into their surroundings. The thickness of the glass gives space between the image and the gold leaf, lending the print a unique three dimensional quality — especially in the more detailed photographs.  The bold and dark frames give contrast to their glowing interiors, helping to punctuate the image as installed on the wall. As objects, the framed prints in Golden Stardust are exquisite. Especially in a dimly lit settings these prints these prints seem to radiate from within, projecting a warm hue into their surroundings. The thickness of the glass gives space between the image and the gold leaf, lending the print a unique three dimensional quality — especially in the more detailed photographs.  The bold and dark frames give contrast to their glowing interiors, helping to punctuate the image as installed on the wall.
Artist

Artwork

Chestnut Tree, Sicily
Kate Breakey

Chestnut Tree, Sicily

photography, orotone

9 x 6 in

$1,120.00

Shetland Island
Kate Breakey

Shetland Island

photography, orotone

8.50 x 11 in

$1,320.00

Total Solar Eclipse August 21, 2017, Nebraska
Kate Breakey

Total Solar Eclipse August 21, 2017, Nebraska

photography, orotone

6 x 6 in

$1,120.00

Dandelion II
Kate Breakey

Dandelion II

photography,orotone

8 x 8 in

Framed $1320

Purple Tulip
Kate Breakey

Purple Tulip

photography, orotone

7 x 5 in

framed, $1120

Southern Magnolia
Kate Breakey

Southern Magnolia

photography, orotone

5 x 4 in

framed, $900

Vase with Chinaberries
Kate Breakey

Vase with Chinaberries

photography,orotone

6 x 5 in

Framed $1100

Buckeye
Kate Breakey

Buckeye

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

24 x 28 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Moonlight on Bay, South Australia
Kate Breakey

Moonlight on Bay, South Australia

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

24 x 28 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Upturned Boat
Kate Breakey

Upturned Boat

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

24 x 28 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Chestnut Tree, Tuscany
Kate Breakey

Chestnut Tree, Tuscany

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

29 x 21 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Lunar Eclipse
Kate Breakey

Lunar Eclipse

photography, orotone

7 x 5 in

$1,120.00

Solar Eclipse Nebraska August 21st 2018 Diamond Ring
Kate Breakey

Solar Eclipse Nebraska August 21st 2018 Diamond Ring

photography, orotone

6 x 6 in

$1,120.00

Total Solar Eclipse August 21, 2017, Nebraska
Kate Breakey

Total Solar Eclipse August 21, 2017, Nebraska

photography, orotone

6 x 6 in

$1,120.00

Four Lemons
Kate Breakey

Four Lemons

photography, orotone

8 x 8 in

framed, $1320

Reclining Nude
Kate Breakey

Reclining Nude

photography, orotone

5.50 x 8 in

Framed $1120

Southern Magnolia
Kate Breakey

Southern Magnolia

photography,orotone

11 x 8.50 in

Framed $1320

Silver Coffee Pot
Kate Breakey

Silver Coffee Pot

photography,orotone

5 x 4 in

Framed $900

Fallen Tree, Mt. Etna, Sicily
Kate Breakey

Fallen Tree, Mt. Etna, Sicily

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

21 x 30 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Owl Feather, Arizona
Kate Breakey

Owl Feather, Arizona

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

24 x 28 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

White Gum Tree, Australia
Kate Breakey

White Gum Tree, Australia

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

24 x 28 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Gull Wing, Gulf Coast
Kate Breakey

Gull Wing, Gulf Coast

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

28 x 24 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Moonlight Arno Bay
Kate Breakey

Moonlight Arno Bay

photography, orotone

11 x 6 in

$1,320.00

Spider Chrysanthemum
Kate Breakey

Spider Chrysanthemum

photography,orotone

8 x 8 in

Framed $1320

Bower Vine
Kate Breakey

Bower Vine

photography,orotone

7 x 5 in

Framed $1120

Lily
Kate Breakey

Lily

photography,orotone

7 x 5 in

Framed $1120

Rose
Kate Breakey

Rose

photography,orotone

4 x 4 in

Framed $900

Standing Nude II
Kate Breakey

Standing Nude II

photography, orotone

6 x 3 in

framed, $900

Blossom, Texas
Kate Breakey

Blossom, Texas

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

21 x 30 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Horse in Moonlight
Kate Breakey

Horse in Moonlight

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

24 x 28 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Reclining Nude
Kate Breakey

Reclining Nude

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

21 x 29 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Lunar Eclipse
Kate Breakey

Lunar Eclipse

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

28 x 24 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Swan, Tuscany, Italy
Kate Breakey

Swan, Tuscany, Italy

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

28 x 24 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Pomegranate
Kate Breakey

Pomegranate

photography, orotones

6 x 6 in

framed, $1120

Still Life With Five Figs
Kate Breakey

Still Life With Five Figs

photography, orotone

6 x 8 in

$1,100.00

Common Yellowthroat Warbler
Kate Breakey

Common Yellowthroat Warbler

photography,orotone

8 x 8 in

Framed $1320

Pewter Shaker
Kate Breakey

Pewter Shaker

photography,orotone

7 x 5 in

Framed $1120

Running Filly
Kate Breakey

Running Filly

photography, orotone

3 x 4 in

framed $900

Trumpet Shell
Kate Breakey

Trumpet Shell

photography, orotone

8.50 x 13 in

framed $1320

Breaking Wave, Hawaii
Kate Breakey

Breaking Wave, Hawaii

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

21 x 29 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Leopard Moth
Kate Breakey

Leopard Moth

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

24 x 28 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Single Cloud
Kate Breakey

Single Cloud

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

24 x 28 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Birch Trees, Utah
Kate Breakey

Birch Trees, Utah

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

30 x 21 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

Big Cloud Over Safford Peak
Kate Breakey

Big Cloud Over Safford Peak

Photographic images printed on Japanese Kozo Paper, hand colored with pencil and pastel

28 x 21 in

unframed $1500 framed $1750

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