Photographer explores revolution through new exhibit

Nov 9, 2017

BATAVIA — Hanging in wooden frames, tied together by twine, is the story of a revolution.

“It is about revolution and righting wrongs,” said Jim Burns, looking at a photograph of a hammer tied down by twine.

The “Cabal and Zen” art exhibit opens today at GO-Art!, and Burns said he got the idea for the revolution storyline out of a meeting he had at his studio with the Batavia Photography Club.

“After everyone was gone, I started playing around and using materials that were there. I had an idea — kind of like Gulliver’s Travels type of thing,” he said. “The ideas just came with a whole story for it.”

The story took three days to shoot, and starts with the hammer doing what it does and “like what it does a little too much and the maiming portion of it.” Burns said the nails get fed up and overthrow the hammer, before using the tool which was used for destruction to free their friends. He said people wanted the story to continue on with a happy ending, but he didn’t feel like it fit — that it is better for the imagination to figure out what happens next. What did the world turn into.

The frames are made out of the materials which are in the pictures and shown they are built without any nails. Burns said while taking the photos wasn’t difficult, making the frames was.

Burns said if someone buys the complete collection hanging for the hammer and nails series, half the proceeds will go to GO ART!

On the other side of the exhibit is the “zen” or peaceful pictures. Unlike the cabal side of the exhibit, the zen photos don’t tell a story. They feature scenery and animals shots, mostly taken in Genesee County. Pulling up a photo of a snowy owl on his phone, Burns said he took the photo at the Genesee County Airport.

Starting photography six years ago, but Burns said he had an interest in it his whole life but never had the time or money to pursue it earlier. Self teaching himself photography, Burns added the Batavia Photography Club was also very helpful too.

“I’m an engineer, so (I like that photography) is mechanical, scientific and creative all at the same time,” he said.

There will be an artist reception from 6 to 8 p.m. on Nov. 16, and the exhibit will be open until Feb. 3.

By Mallory Diefenbach, Batavia Daily News