Tom Persinger
American, born 1969, Pittsburgh, PA
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Past, 2016
Cyanotype, pencil on paper
52 x 52 in.
Future, 2016
Pencil on paper
52 x 52 in.
Present, 2016
Fugitive cyanotype with pencil on paper
156 x 52 in.

Collection of Fred and Laura Ruth Bidwell
Tom Persinger is a Pittsburgh artist, writer, and founder of F295, an international organization of photographers interested in conceptual approaches to technique and process in photography. With Past, Future, and Present, Persinger deconstructs the life cycle of the medium. InPast, the developer has already been fixed in the dark blue of cyanotype, while the site of a potential photograph is outlined in Future. Present, which has been sensitized with chemicals but not yet fixed, will slowly darken from sulphur yellow to grey as it reacts to the gallery’s light levels. The large “fugitive” work invites infinite contemplation, as it changes constantly in minute ways. In the artist’s words, “We can empty ourselves ino the abyss, yet it is never full.”
On April 3
rd, the last day of the exhibition, Persinger will return to fix Present with a public performance that encloses the work in parentheses, a record of the exhibition’s duration.
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Above: Tom Persinger sensitizing Present with cyanotype emulsion in Transformer Galleries the day before the opening of the exhibition.