MCBA Mentorship Exhibition
Mary Abbe, Minneapolis Star Tribune, November 17, 2011
“Photographer Keith Taylor plunged into “dark matter,” that mysterious and still-unfound stuff that scientists are looking for via experiments conducted in an abandoned northern Minnesota mine. Taylor’s dark images of the surrounding forest, overgrown rail lines and strange structure are evocative metaphors for this invisible stuff. In 20 perfectly printed photogravures, he eloquently suggests the hypnotic appeal of this strange quest to crack a cosmic mystery.”
Minneapolis Photo Center — Landscape Photography
Mary Abbe, Star Tribune, May 7, 2010
“… a technical wizard like Keith Taylor deserves a shout-out just for the prowess evident in his platinum-palladium print Rain Cloud, The Badlands, an evocation of turbulent sky and rocks that has the brooding intensity of a 19th-century photogravure.”
The Captured Image: Photography Beyond Grain and Pixels
Hannah Dentinger, Duluth Art Institute, August 13, 2007
“The most accessible photographs in the show may also be the most labor-intensive. Keith Taylor of Minneapolis produced exquisite landscapes and cityscapes using a combination of black and white film processed in 1930s developers and digital editing. The pictures are printed on clear plastic, like transparencies, to create platinum prints with a subtle tone and rare luminosity. Taylor’s photos are quiet and reflective—literally so, in the case of “Foshay Reflection”: the familiar shape of the Foshay tower in Minneapolis wiggles up the windows of a nearby skyscraper.
“Waves” is the simplest and the most beautiful image in the show. Opaque waters like slabs of slate reflect the glow of a sky hung with clouds. The tiny, gloomy “The Third Bridge” in colors of chalk and charcoal was printed using a process similar to etching, and recalls Whistler’s famous “Nocturnes.” Pictures have never been so motionless as those of Keith Taylor.”
Mary Abbe, Minneapolis Star Tribune, November 26, 2004
“Growing up in Kent, a verdant region of England southeast of his London birthplace, Keith Taylor came to love history and architecture. Though he moved to Minneapolis nine years ago to work as a photographic printer doing custom printing for exhibitions and books, he never lost his affection for the historic homes and gardens he often had visited as a child.
During the past two years, Taylor photographed some of his favorite English sites with his wife, Beth Dow, who is also a photographer. Twenty of Taylor’s images are featured through Dec. 31 in an elegantly personal exhibit at Icebox Gallery.
Many of the sites are properties of England’s National Trust, which maintains historically significant buildings. Several were home to important writers and artists: architect Charles Renne Mackintosh, children’s book author Beatrix Potter, Arts and Crafts designer William Morris, novelist Rudyard Kipling, writer and gardener Vita Sackville-West, among them.
The show is called “Through these Doors,” because about half of the pictures include doorways, but there are also atmospheric images of parks, gardens and statuary.
“I had no plan,” Taylor said. “These have accumulated over the past couple of years, but I’ve known these properties for many more years. The doorways and underlying themes were set … and I decided I would photograph what was important to me, what I felt about the houses.”
Taylor is known for dusky, richly detailed images more reminiscent of etchings than conventional photographs. They are made with a laborious 19th-century printing process involving platinum and palladium instead of the more common silver salts used in most 20th-century photographs. Recently he invented a technique that includes using a computer to enlarge his negatives, but he still mixes his own light-sensitive solutions of platinum and palladium and brushes them onto the watercolor type paper on which the photos are printed.
“I’m interested in the way people live their lives, so it’s just fascinating for me to walk around these places and things that were important to them,” he said.”