THE MARK OF ABEL 2005 - 2008
What I would really like to stress is the visual richness of the work and the connections these group portraits
force upon the viewer. They will pull you in, whether you want it or not, and that certainly is something that
any photographer can only wish for. The work is also intensely beautiful. Joerg Colberg
Panas' somber, lushly-colored group portraits in The Mark of Abel, her first published book of photography,
reveal the unspoken relationships and dynamics between family members. Her images, exhibited
this month at Rayko are by turns fascinating and haunting, mysterious and deeply revealing.
Bonnie Chan, Flavorpill
Our earliest relationships factor considerably in determining who we turn out to be.
For three years, in hot and cold weather, I invited families of various forms to stand before my lens. I asked them
not because I knew what to expect, but because I was curious to see what would happen. These groups and occasional
individuals stood graciously before me. I watched how they arranged themselves and then began to photograph them
with my view camera. In these pictures of family relationships, the details matter most. Although they portray engaging
people, verdant landscapes and beautiful light, the photographs also provide more subtle clues for understanding the
nature of my work. These images depict specific people, but they go beyond portraits to explore universal questions of
how we see ourselves and what we feel. The pictures ask that we look deeper than the surface for what lies underneath:
that complex part of our own personalities we often don't see.
All photographs from this series are available in two sizes, 32 x 40" and 20 x 24" as limited edition, chromogenic prints.
This series is available as a traveling exhibition.