Satan’s Breath- March 2014

Photographer Virginia Webb will exhibit her new black and white photographs, “Satan’s Breath” during March at In-Town Gallery as this month’s featured artist on the front wall. She will share her recent photography adventures with visitors at the opening reception from 5:00 to 8:00 pm on the First Friday, March 7, in the gallery.

“Satan’s Breath” is a collection of industrial black and white photographs of an American thermal plant that has been in constant operation since 1893.Webb seeks to reveal to an audience what caught her attention and would not let go until she had stalked and exploited it from every possible direction. “A strong, tall subject caught in early morning light is a gift. My camera will not be denied,” Webb said.

Because it was located in the center of a large city, Webb was very pleased that she was able to view the thermal plant from all directions without the risk of serious trespassing.”There are times when I am visually arrested by a thing that is so perfect in its light that I cannot leave it alone. Sometimes the moment is fleeting and vanishes very quickly.This thermal plant was kind enough to be set in perfect early morning light, making the shapes and lines stand out in silhouette. The stairs winding their way up the standpipes were constantly swept by erupting steam and I thought of how dangerous it must have been to climb those stairs in the winter. The unrelenting steam was a telling hazard,like Satan’s breath.”

A variety of experiences in far-flung locations have honed Webb’s photographic expression. Circumstances delivered her to Islamabad, Pakistan in 1985 where she lived, traveled and worked as a professional photographer for four years. During this time her images were featured in international exhibitions and published by a variety of international clients. As founder and director of the International Photographic Society of Pakistan, Webb developed and taught photo seminars, courses, and workshops, and arranged photography exhibitions in an international diplomatic setting.

In 2010, Webb was hosted by the Foreign Ministry of China to open the Sister City photography exhibition in Wuxi, Jiangsu Province, which included nine of her photographs of Chattanooga. In 2008 she deployed with the American Red Cross to document disaster conditions in the State of Iowa. Webb has also photographed the people and situations in Lithuania, India, Kenya, Scotland, and other countries. Currently, much of her work is centered in the Chattanooga area and the American Southwest.

Virginia Webb’s photograph Points on a Skyline was published on the cover of the book, CHATTANOOGA: The Renaissance of a City. In 2010 another of her photographs was published in the book, Chattanooga’s Renaissance. She is an alum of the Bill Holmberg Arts Leadership Institute. Her photographs are held in numerous collections including the Foreign Ministry of China, The Government of Pakistan, the Lyndhurst Foundation, United Way, Wilson Air Center, and in many private collections. The photographer’s website is www.virginiawebb.com.


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