Photographs by Celia Pearson
Sea glass is a quintessential element of the Cape Cod experience. The magical glass first captured the attention of photographer Celia Pearson when she was commissioned to photograph for the book Pure SEA GLASS by Richard LaMotte (Sea Glass Publishing, 2004).
The best examples from the artist's body of work on this subject are on display now, from August 14 through October 10, at the Cape Cod Museum of Art at 60 Hope Lane in Dennis.
The exhibit coincides with the 5th annual North American Sea Glass Festival, to be held this year in Hyannis on October 9-10 at the Resort and Conference Center.
Sea Glass as Still Life Photograph by Celia Pearson
Kirk Nelson, Executive Director of The New Bedford Museum of Glass, says that Pearson's photographs "transcend the subject of sea glass. Through her sensitivity to the color, shape and surface texture of the glass, her mastery of lighting and her eye for graphic composition, Pearson creates images that read as works of abstract art on many levels."
Celia Pearson grew up on a farm outside of Washington, D.C., and spent summers on the coast of Maine. While pursuing undergraduate studies at Swarthmore College and then Georgetown University, Pearson began to study photography with Richard Bond in Annapolis, Maryland.
Her initial interest in photography was casual, but Bond's lectures sparked a passion that would define her adult life. In 1979, she established Pearson Photography,specializing in both fine art and assignment photography.
Pearson's photographs have been shown in galleries in Massachusetts, Delaware, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. Her photographs of architecture, interiors, and gardens have been published in national magazines such as Coastal Living, Metropolitan Home, Southern Accents, and Residential Architect.
In the Artist Statement on her website, she writes, "I have been making photographs for a long time. I am stubborn, persistent and committed to excellence. And I love standing behind a camera looking at things."
Describing her lifelong passion, Pearson writes, "My photographs are a journal of my observations of the world about me and my response to what I see. I am summoned by my subjects—stones and plants, shells and sea glass, facades, interiors—for reasons I do not fully understand. Often I venture close in order to photograph what I feel—spirit by way of form and light."
What is it about sea glass that continues to enthrall this artist? Pearson says, "As I focus on the glass, I am paying attention to its physical beauty, the light that informs it, the relationships between various elements. But there is something more that attracts me – something that's energetic, unseen and as compelling as the beauty in front of me. These vestiges of mankind transformed by nature seem to be full of echoes, memory, and spirit."