Kevin Locke

Artist Statement

I am a native of Boston, although for 30 years, I worked, traveled, and studied globally. My fascination with the photograph began in the cellar of my boyhood home, where I printed photographs using a light bulb. That process was common then.  I have not put down the camera since.  I have lived in Jamaica, Italy, and Ireland. Those diverse environments inspired me to photograph the natural and built environments, and, of course, the people.  Studying fine art photography at Massachusetts Institute of Art provides technical excellence.

While a Jesuit priest working in Rome, I maintained a darkroom in the Vatican and produced a corpus of black-and-white work entitled Dialogo col Divino or Dialogue with the Divine, by capturing the exciting interplay of light and shadow, garden and building, people, and the Divine.  The work is about the Divine’s presence as seen without a religious image.  My camera seeks to see and savor creation as it continues to reach fullness.  The show went on tour to Florence, Rome, and New York in one-person exhibitions. With an educational background in art history, theology, and philosophy, I am always engaged in seeing more deeply, a powerful process of participating in what is seen and unseen.

The photographs from Dialogo col Divine will be on view at my Open Studio.  They are darkroom processed prints on high quality paper, finished with handmade matting and framing.  They are for sale individually or as a corpus.


Because of my interest my Irish background, I have spent a good deal of time there over the years.  The colors, textures, rhythms of the Irish landscape—as well as the Irish people—are seductive.  I have attempted to capture at least a hint of the beauty I behold.  Several years ago, I gave a talk in Killarney about this elusive beauty found in nature and its relation to the cadence of speech the Irish use.  I drew the connection that in a Baroque city like Rome, the dramatic, overwrought architecture mirrors well the manner in which Romans express themselves verbally.    In Washington, I served on a public diplomacy board at the Irish Embassy.  Most recently, I was hired by an Irish travel company to produce a publication for the company’s content-rich excursions.  I produced a book containing my fine art photographs as well as images of educational musical events.  I plan to update the book soon to include my prose.  IRELAND:  A Book Of Photographs To Inspire Longing, Laughter, and Love is available on Amazon.

In 1988, I was hired to photograph a month-long diplomatic visit in the former Soviet Union.  Cutting edge at the time, I created a two-projector slide show that was used in countless venues to provide information and images at that time of perestroika.  Over the course of the month, we attended multiple briefings in Moscow, Leningrad (as it was then known), and Zagorsk.  Carrying 80 rolls of film into the U.S.S.R. and photographing earnestly, I was followed throughout the trip; a number of exposed film rolls were confiscated by soldiers at the airport.

My Style

For many years, I shot almost exclusively in black-and-white, sometimes adjusting the image to sepia in the darkroom for increased effect.  The Dialogue of the Divine show is exclusively black-and-white.  Several years ago, when photographing in Ireland, I started to shoot in color and have stayed with that.   Work on display at my OPEN STUDIO include the entire show, PLUS, stunning color images made in the west of Ireland.  I am a social just practitioner and will show an image from Nicaragua and another from Istanbul, Turkey.

Admirers say that my work has a painterly quality, which I find inspiring.  Studying fine art photography at Massachusetts Institute of Art, I learned to use one lens, shoot the subject, then process for excellence and reality.  My work eschews the use of “special effects” and “infused colors” in favor of verisimilitude.  In a sense, I consider photographs as icons in that a religious icon draws one in, there is an offer to conversation.  The icon whispers back to the viewer.  Don’t just look but see and be with the photograph.  Find your moment with it.  What is the invitation for you?  I pose the question, but the answer is yours.

My Giclée prints are created with archival pigments on exhibition fiber paper, cotton watercolor paper, or cotton canvas of the highest quality.  Giclée inks are pigment based and use water as a binding agent. These high-quality inks allow for a wide color range, or gamut, and ensure archival quality for many years.  The prints produced in the darkroom are made using highest quality fiber-based papers.


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