Simon Norfolk

May 5, 2005 - May 28, 2005

Simon Norfolk

In his third exhibit at Blue Sky, Norfolk delves into the murky and complex world of the Croat-Serb conflict in Bosnia. A lingering aftershock of this war has been the discovery of mass graves throughout the country, a thread from the past and continual reminder of the tragic loss and frays in humanity that civil conflict often displays. Norfolk’s large scale color landscape images of the areas surrounding one particular mass grave quietly resonate as they abstract the secrets, the history, and the stories that little by little continue to resonate as they are unearthed.

He writes, “The war in Bosnia in the 1990s was in many ways innovative. It raised to common currency the terms “ethnic cleansing” and “humanitarian intervention;” it brought back to Europe a barbarism not seen since the second World War; and it was the first war fought very much under the eyes of the media. In addition, it was the first conflict fought by killers who knew, before the war had even finished, that a war crimes tribunal awaited them.”

An internationally respected, and widely exhibited, photographer, Norfolk exhibited his series on genocide at Blue Sky in July, 1999. The entire exhibition was purchased by the Portland Art Museum and is now being traveled world-wide.

In 2002, Norfolk was awarded the prestigious European Publisher’s Prize for his in-depth examination of the archaeological destruction of layers of war in Afghanistan spanning 22 years. Blue Sky exhibited this body of work in January, 2003.