Quogue Gallery has announced its third exhibition of the summer 2016 season, “Salt Lake Reconsidered,” a group of stunning aerial photographs of the Great Salt Lake made in 2005 by Diane Tuft. The exhibition will be on view from July 15 through August 11, 2016; an opening reception will be held at the gallery at 44 Quogue Street in Quogue, NY on Saturday, July 23, 2016 from 4 to 7 p.m.

Tuft initially set out on her trip to Utah to photograph from the air Robert Smithson’s seminal work, Spiral Jetty, using black and white infrared film. During her helicopter flight, the artist was struck by the vibrant colors of the Great Salt Lake and switched over to a digital camera to capture several images.

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"Salt Lake I" by Diane Tuft, 2005. C-Print, 52 x 80 inches.

"Salt Lake I" by Diane Tuft, 2005. C-Print, 52 x 80 inches.

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Returning to her studio, Tuft observed that the colors were even more intense than what she recalled. After researching the natural causes of this phenomenon, she discovered that the bright, unclouded days and dry atmospheric conditions—both hallmarks of the high elevation of the Great Basin Desert—create an environment that is rich in ultraviolet light.

The Great Salt Lake also contains Halobacteria, which is able to thrive under harsh UV light because it can only survive in a high salinity environment. The protective crust of salt that is the growth medium for the Halobacteria provides an opaque layer of resistance to the harmful effects of the UV radiation. This crust gives the lake water its distinctive reddish hues while also reflecting ultraviolet light, heightening the surreal quality of images such as Red Sea, 2005.

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"Red Sea" by Diane Tuft, 2005. Color Pigment Print, 40 x 60 inches.

"Red Sea" by Diane Tuft, 2005. Color Pigment Print, 40 x 60 inches.

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The artist discovered that both the camera and the environment collaborated in conjuring the ethereal colors that make the photographs such spectacular chromatic works. She returned to fly over the entire Great Salt Lake in 2005 to photograph the sublime colors and patterns that ultraviolet light reveals.

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"States of Matter" by Diane Tuft, 2005. Color Pigment Print, 40 x 60 inches.

"States of Matter" by Diane Tuft, 2005. Color Pigment Print, 40 x 60 inches.

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Recalling the discovery that led to the suite of photographs, Tuft says, “Since 1998, I have been photographing the visual effects of both ultraviolet and infrared light on the earth’s landscape. The Great Salt Lake’s high salinity, high mineral content, warm shallow water and elevation yield ideal conditions for capturing the sun’s reflective and refractive ultraviolet light waves. Since both infrared and ultraviolet light are beyond the visible spectrum, I am able to capture landscape that the naked eye cannot see. This allows the viewer to experience a time and place that would not be possible otherwise. My exploration of the ‘hidden truths’ that exist in the landscape allows the viewer to question what the landscape is communicating to us.”

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"Breaking Out" by Diane Tuft, 2005. C-Print, 27 x 40 inches.

"Breaking Out" by Diane Tuft, 2005. C-Print, 27 x 40 inches.

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Diane Tuft is a mixed media artist who has focused primarily on photography since 1998. She earned a degree in mathematics at the University of Connecticut before continuing her studies in art at Pratt Institute in New York. She has always been fascinated by the mystery of what exists beyond what is visible to the human eye and is dedicated to the principle of capturing this through her camera.

Tuft has had solo exhibitions at Marlborough Gallery, Ameringer – Yohe Gallery and Pace galleries in New York City, the Kimball Art Center in Park City, Utah, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, Connecticut, and the Southampton Arts Center in Southampton, New York. Her work is included in the permanent collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the International Center of Photography in New York City, the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, New York, as well as numerous private collections.

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"Extra Solar" by Diane Tuft, 2005. C-Print, 27 x 40 inches.

"Extra Solar" by Diane Tuft, 2005. C-Print, 27 x 40 inches.

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ABOUT QUOGUE GALLERY

As Quogue’s first and only private art gallery, the Quogue Gallery is a dynamic new space in the Hamptons where artists, collectors and art enthusiasts can meet and share their common passion for serious artistic investigation and appreciation. The Gallery’s mission is to present a program of artistic excellence not limited to any genre or medium. Its focus is on modern and contemporary art created by emerging, established, and historically important artists. An essential aspect of the mission is to establish the Gallery as an an active, vibrant, and inventive participant in the Hamptons art panorama, with artist talks and events that significantly contribute to the modern and contemporary art discourse.

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