sur·re·al·ism: 20th-century art movement which sought to release the creative potential of the unconscious mind.
Artist Statement / Bio
Perry Hambright was drawn to art from an early age, working with oil paints and pastels until he obtained a camera as a teenager. Then he built himself a darkroom where he processed countless rolls of film and printed picture after picture of his native North Carolina. So began an artist’s lifelong passion.
His thirst to learn photography inside and out took him to the renown Rochester Institute of Technology, where he studied under Weston Kemp, Tom Muir Wilson, Bea Nettles, and other noted photographic artists, ultimately earning his BFA in Fine Art Photography. As a student, Hambright experimented by combining multiple images for aesthetic purposes and has continued to manipulate photographs as conceptual art to this day.
Hambright’s aesthetic is inspired by the surrealism of Rene Magritte, Salvador Dali, MC Escher, Jerry Uelsmann, those classic album covers by Hipgnosis, and many others. He has built a large body of contemporary photography featuring marriages between sharp, uncomplicated, pleasingly composed scenes and striking surrealistic additions.
The artist’s process goes wherever his subconscious takes him, from the time he photographs something of interest until carefully compositing and manipulating it digitally. Once a particular combination satisfies an inner vision, he continues to refine the amalgamated work until the blend meshes seamlessly to best convey the artist’s intent. For Hambright, the make-or-break test is the impact and feeling the final result communicates when viewed as a quality print.
Less like dreamy fantasy or otherworldly sci-fi looks, Hambright’s style is straightforward and uncomplicated. He calls it “simply surreal.” His conceptual works juxtapose the beauty of nature's bounty with fun or interesting or even bizarre additional imagery he seeks out or comes upon in daily life.
His scenic shots, after introducing such things as gigantic lifeforms, unusual objects, or unexpected events, are meant to delight, surprise, or cause the viewer to think or feel just a bit deeper. His aim is to inspire inquisitive thoughts and spark viewers' imaginations, as well as please the eye.
Professionally Mr. Hambright has always pursued means to express the imagination--from filmmaking to graphic design to product development--but he continues to produce art photography to nurture a strong creative spirit.
Now residing in Santa Barbara, CA, Hambright draws inspiration from this picturesque area, shooting settings he can either reimagine by adding conceptual ingredients, or print as stand-alone art photographs.
He and his wife enjoy home improvement projects in their Santa Barbara residence and delighting in their two daughters, granddaughter, and grandson.