* All images used with permission. Please do not distribute without first contacting the artist.
Terri Loewenthal is an Oakland-based artist whose work examines the intersection of landscape and psyche. In her series, Psychscapes, Loewenthal investigates the sublime expanse of land and sky romanticized in the still-potent mythology of Utopian California. Psychscapes are single-exposure, in-camera compositions that utilize special optics developed by Loewenthal to compress vast spaces into complex, evocative environments. These photographs combine straightforward landscape photography with explorations into the psychology of perception.
Terri describes her work by saying, “I was referring to these images as psychedelic even before I made them. To have a psychedelic experience is to free your mind from its normal constraints. When I had the idea for these images, I was able to shift the colors of the natural world in my mind. Water was pink and leaves were blue. I’ve always been envious of painters’ ability to shift reality in whichever direction they choose. With this work, I wanted to do something similar: create a world that is familiar yet also wild, otherworldly. My work is a marriage of calculation and spontaneity. I have a toolkit and a sense of what might happen, but at the same time, it’s a surprise. I love the idea of making an “impossible” image. “
Terri is also founder of The Chetwood, a residency program that provides housing for artists visiting the Bay Area, allowing them to create lasting community with supportive peer networks outside of typical art-making structures.
Loewenthal has been an active musician for over a decade; her bands Call and Response, Rubies and Shock have performed extensively nationally and internationally.
Terry says she wants these images to help preserve the wildness of our open spaces — by heightening and newly envisioning that wildness.