Angkor Wat 79 Izu, Kenro  (Japanese, b.1949)

After working through the 1970s in New York as a studio assistant in the world of fashion photography, Izu experienced something of a perceptual realignment, an awakening of the senses as it were, when he first discovered the mammoth plate photographs made by English photographer Francis Frith during his excursions to Egypt in 1856 and 1857. The rich detail and elegiac tonality of Frith’s photographs captivated Izu, and in 1979 he set off to Egypt for the first time, followed soon thereafter by trips to England, Scotland, and Mexico – the outline of a project began to come into focus. Having experimented with different cameras during his first trip, Izu found that large format was the only suitable option, and by 1983 he was equipped with a custom made camera that produced 14 x 20” negatives, a camera that was, at the time, very likely the largest portable camera in existence. In his search for a printing process that would realize the visual potential of his negatives, Izu learned of hand-coated platinum/palladium printmaking, which was first developed in the 1870’s. With the elements of his craft now able to keep pace with his creative vision, Izu was ready to create the images that comprise Sacred Places. (Greenberg Gallery)