Wu Gorge, 2002
Carbro print on aluminum
Born in New Zealand, Ken Griffiths lives in London. Whilst he may be better known for his commercial photography, he is actually an avid explorer in the genre of landscapes. He explores the shapes and forms found all over the world from the USA to Machu Pichu, and most recently the Three Gorges Dam region of China.
In his Abruzzo series, from 1985-90 in the Italian region, he uses the platinum process for a richer tonal effect when printing images - Griffiths photographed the villagers and the landscape in which they live to produce a stunning series of pictures.
He received the Association of Photographers Award for Platinum printing for this project.
In his most recent series of work 'Three Gorges', Griffiths shows a world now vanished under billions of cubic meters of water. The Three Gorges Dam is China’s largest building project since the Great Wall, and Griffiths’ photographs depict a lost landscape and the emergence of a new one, and evoke the imagery of traditional Chinese landscape painting.
Using a colour printing technique, which was invented in 1863 but disappeared in the 1950s, Griffiths’ images present the landscapes in a rare microscopic depth. Printed in many layers with pigments rather than dyes, this technique (Carbro Printing) allows Griffiths to intricately play with colour, contrast, sharpness and detail, endowing the work with a painterly quality impossible to achieve with modern printing methods.