“The longer you’re up there, the greater the sensation of the Earth’s rotation—this blue marble spinning in space. It’s an amazing experience to be so aware of the circular rotation of our planet as you watch the sun seemingly cycle all the way around you in the sky without ever setting. I wanted to capture that majestic motion, and the Cirkut camera became the logical tool.”
Chris McCaw creates landscape photographs that incorporate the apparent movement of the sun, which burns its path into vintage photo paper exposed using large format cameras. His series ‘Cirkut’ was taken with a modified 1913 Cirkut camera—a rotating analog camera originally designed to photograph panoramic views on large rolls of film. For the works included in this book, McCaw traveled to Alaska, camping for many weeks within the Arctic Circle during the summer months when the sun never sets. Navigating weather and wilderness conditions, McCaw’s camera slowly made 360 degree rotations, tracking the sun across hours and days. The resulting work expresses the extraordinary relationship between Earth and the star at the center of our solar system.
This work, centering on the artist’s patient observations of time and light, was handmade into a two-sided accordion book with selected pieces, ‘Cirkut #6’ and ‘Cirkut #7’. The limited edition artist’s book includes a wooden bookcase made to resemble the film holder of a large format camera, the artist’s notes on the work, and an exposure test strip made from the same vintage photographic paper used in the original Cirkut camera exposures.
About Chris McCaw
Chris McCaw’s work is firmly rooted in the history of photography while pushing the medium in new directions. His experimental process recalls the work of photography pioneer Henry Fox Talbot, combined with the slash paintings of Lucio Fontana.
McCaw has taken this notion of simultaneous creation-destruction and harnessed the resulting tension, working with the unpredictable process so elegantly that he managed to create a polished and highly crafted style, but one that remains dependent upon the brute and visceral contribution of chance and light and the spinning of the Earth.
McCaw’s work is part of several public collections, including the Chrysler Museum of Art, the Eastman Museum, the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian Institution (American Art Museum, National Air and Space Museum), the Whitney Museum of American Art (United States), and the Victoria and Albert Museum (United Kingdom).
About Datz Press
Datz Press is an art book press that works with photographers, designers, and bookmakers to create, publish, and exhibit books centered on photography. They advocate for the growth of participatory artistic activity through exhibiting and publishing art, as well as art education.
More information: datzpress.com