Perkins is not a traditional photographer but more a light painter using the camera as brush in a way that is both painterly and calligraphic. His work occupies a unique niche between painting and photography.
This body of work yields objectless vistas that, without the usual photo composition elements and where the figure and background, object and subject merge into one, invite us to just linger on what we see, and to explore perception before trying to construct something meaningful out of it.
Equally inspired by mid-century Color Field painters who wanted to train the eye to see more than just a picture, where subject came second to seeing, and the path of Dharma Art with its emphasis on appreciating things as they are, Perkins invites us to linger, to explore the emergence of pure perception and our emotional response to it. How does seeing make us feel? As seeing transforms to looking what are we noticing in our bodies as much as in our minds?
John Perkins studied perceptual psychology at McMaster then briefly at the NS College of Art and Design (NSCAD). He has been making art in a variety of modalities from the 1970’s. John recently returned to Nova Scotia after a 12 year residency in the acclaimed arts center of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. His work is in collections in Canada, the USA and Mexico.