Natasha Bacca is displaying her unique art at Black Butte Ranch. photo by Randy Johnson
Natasha Bacca is displaying her unique art at Black Butte Ranch. photo by Randy Johnson

Pushing the boundaries of contemporary photography, the works of artist and instructor Natasha Bacca will be on display at the Gallery at the Lodge at Black Butte Ranch.

An artist reception will be held Saturday, March 26, from 4 to 6 p.m. to celebrate the 40 pieces of art that will be on display through the end of April.

Katie Williams, executive assistant to the general manager, and gallery coordinator commented, "We're very excited to have Natasha's art displayed here at the Ranch. We look for interesting art that causes a change of perspective in the viewer, and Natasha's art definitely does that."

Bacca has created a uniquely original method of painting with light, using an apparatus comprised of a cylindrical shaped body that uses light-emitting diodes of various colors and intensity. Under darkroom conditions she uses the pen-like device to draw or write with light on photosensitive paper.

"I work on photographic paper in standard sizes ranging from 8-by-10 inches to 20-by-30 inches. I vary the size in part by what I am creating, but I always try to make a variety of sizes in every series," Bacca said. "Because of the erroneousness that can happen when working in complete darkness, I frequently trim the paper down after the piece is processed, giving the whole body of my work a large range of unconventional sizes."

Because Bacca works in the dark, she often uses guides to help her navigate the project she is working on. In addition to the light source, Bacca also uses matte boards, broken glass, and even tree branches to affect different areas on the paper, thereby creating different patterns.

"I am always experimenting with new ideas and techniques," she said.

Bacca was awarded a U.S. patent on January 18 of this year, but it was during the three years while attending the University of Oregon that Bacca developed her innovative process.

"I spent approximately two years developing the process and the tools, as well as writing a patent for them before ever showing the work," Bacca said. "I have been showing my work for three years now, and am continually developing new methods, styles, and works."

It was during her time at Oregon that Bacca also began to formulate her thoughts in what was and is an ever-changing landscape in the world of photography.

"During the time I was pursuing my photography-based art degree, I witnessed meteoric changes within the photographic world," Bacca said. "While the once-commanding darkroom was being replaced by the newest computer lab, prosperous photography businesses were closing their doors forever. I delved further into the basic concepts of photography; where it came from, what it meant, and where it was going."

While many may consider this a new approach to photography, Bacca feels that her work is still just a "form of old-fashioned photography." Bacca, who is also a photography instructor at Central Oregon Community College added, "I do not think film will go away completely. Currently, film cameras are an excellent learning tool. Most students cannot afford DSLRs. Learning on film SLRs, and actually manipulating light in the darkroom is invaluable for students before moving on to the digital courses."

In addition to her exhibit at Black Butte Ranch, Bacca's work has been displayed nationally at galleries in San Francisco, Portland, and Phoenix.

Her work has also been exhibited in private, public, and corporate collections around the country.

"It's always an honor to host an exhibit of a nationally recognized artist such as Natasha," Williams said. "While those who view her art may not understand the process, they are still able to appreciate the creativity and aesthetics of it."

Last year, Bacca was selected as the label artist for Deschutes Brewery's seasonal beer, Jubelale. In addition, Oregon Public Broadcasting featured Bacca's process and art on the program Oregon Art Beat.

Complimentary wine and light hors d'oeuvres will be served, with all ages welcome.

For more information, call Katie Williams at 541-595-1510.