this is [not] a photograph

b. 1945 Marion, New York

Amanda Means' work focuses primarily on plant forms and flowers, and serves as a metaphor for her sense of bereavement: the loss of nature following her move from her family's Central New York farm to the urban environment of the city; the loss of her father.

Instead of direct contact with the light-sensitive paper, Means creates her photograms using a custom-built enlarger. Arranging her elements between the machine's light source and its projection lens, the artist captures the shadows on paper affixed to a wall across from the enlarger. Her works record the freshness and vitality of nature even as the blooms are quickly wilting from the intense heat of the exposure. This process gives the photographs an intense quality of radiant light, mediated by a subtle range of grays, and surrounded by intense darkness.

Means received her B.A. from Cornell University and her M.F.A. in Photography in 1978 from SUNY Buffalo. Since 1985, she has been a contributing editor in Photography for Bomb Magazine. Means currently live and works in Brooklyn.

Artwork from top to bottom:

Fritilaria 7, 1998
gelatin silver print

Flower (Number 102), 1998
gelatin silver print

Flower (Number 80), 1996
gelatin silver print

list of artists/artwork

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