Lake Champlain Botanicals, 2013
In the mid-19th century Anna Atkins, the first woman photographer, used the chemical cyanotype process to document the natural world, creating lush, blue images of plant life and algae. Her photographic images, created by placing specimens on chemically coated paper and exposing to the sun, created a window into the unique form and texture of the materials she examined. In this series, Lake Champlain Botanicals, I am examining plant matter, water and stones collected from Lake Champlain through the lens of 21st century digital technology - specifically, a camera created from an open flatbed scanner. The specimens I collect are placed directly on the surface of the glass. Colors and lines are generated through both random and planned glitches in the scanner software caused by movement, light and reflection. The deep blue generated through this process was a happy accidental glitch and created further connection across the centuries between my experimental process and Atkins work.
"In dialogue with the algae cyanotypes of the 19th century English photographer Anna Atkins, Zompetti’s printing process can be thought of as digital contact sheets. The lusciously colored prints of botanical elements, combined with their enormous scale, engage the viewer in a dialogue of meaning and importance of the natural world. We become small in comparison to a blade of grass, or a drop of water and are given a rare and magical insight into the beauty of nature through these prints." Curator DJ Hellerman
Print Editions: 17"x22" and 44"x72"
Late Champlain Botanical #1
Lake Champlain Botanical #2
Lake Champlain Stone #1