Traverse, 2013

Artist Statement


This past year, I found myself in the privileged position of working in China, Burma, Cambodia, and Hawaii, traversing across a varied landscape of urban and rural environments. The resulting photographs are a response to my personal sense of wonder about these places, and their inhabitants. Less a linear narrative and more a catalogue of singular moments, this series emphasizes the instant where light, form, texture and colour come together on a particular day.

Working from first light, to dusk and beyond, I was searching for experiences that were, through my eyes, beautiful or profound:  a city shrouded in morning fog, a full moon illuminating the ocean, blue evenings, golden mornings, and a lone sailor on the ocean.

Traverse represents the culmination of a decade of photographic experimentation.  These new images remain contemplative, and expand upon the formal and natural themes that I have investigated in previous bodies of work. Sky, water, lengthy exposures, atmosphere and vacant space form the underpinnings of these photographs, while the human form gains greater prominence.

This body of work marks a new and profound way of image making for me. The complexities of international travel, combined with the increased rarity of my favored film stock, forced me to experiment on a large scale with a completely digital workflow. The updated optical formulas (with a high-resolution digital back) interpret light with the utmost clarity, but more importantly for me, it does so with immediacy.  Many of these images were acquired hand-held, in confined or moving space such as boats, helicopters, ultra light aircraft, and wobbly teak bridges – areas previously off limits to a large format, tripod-mounted camera.

For the first time in many years, I was less of an observer and more of a participant. As such, my attention was diverted away from operating a camera, and towards the experiences, weather, and people around me. I was once again working in the moment; my intentions being to convey a small fragment of how those moments can be beautiful.

Artist Biography

David Burdeny’s Masters in Architecture and Interior Design background combined with his upbringing in the vast Canadian prairies provides the template for his keen technical ability, enduring patience and minimalist aesthetic enabling him to shoot on site, documenting sky, horizon and the marks humankind leaves behind. Vancouver, BC based, Burdeny has exhibited with the Jennifer Kostuik Gallery since 2001, showcasing his images from the world over, including Antarctica, Iceland, Brazil, China, Burma, Cambodia, France, Italy, Canada and the USA. In 2012 the Ancora Series of 2010 was exhibited at the Centre for Photographic Art, Carmel, CA, Curated by Richard Gadd. Burdeny has won several gold awards in international art photography competitions, most significantly receiving International Photographer of the Year in the Nature category for Canada, revealed at the Lucie Awards Ceremony in New York City, October 2008. Shorelines sold out in both the limited collector edition and trade publication. Burdeny’s work has been included in corporate and private collections. He currently has 8 limited edition photographic series offered and is art is presented at international art fairs yearly.