Stiya – “Stiya” is the latest body of work by Brooklyn-based artist Cole Barash. He uses a unique hyper-focused approach in a study of two pure forms of raw energy, a Nor’Easter storm and the birth of a child. Through composition and sequence, this work considers the experience of these two worlds as one. At first, I didn’t make the connection between the two events and was naturally drawn to photograph the storm and its aftermath.
I spent a few days walking the dunes, beaches, ponds and woods, focusing on areas that had been affected by the storm and areas that had not changed at all. Later realizing that in its isolation, the space of a storm can be much like the space of a birthing room. The pressure, buildup, excitement and fear that accompany this incredible energy transformation.
The two spaces exclusive to the elements involved in designing the change, I was so curious. What was it going to look like? We were on high alert to prepare and expect the worst. Receive notifications, one after another, that the Nor’Easter Stella storm was coming. With record winds at 75 miles per hour in Wellfleet, MA where two days earlier we had welcomed our first child, Iya into the world.
The work lasted four long days and during that time I was drawn to the darkness of the room. The mirror was particularly interesting, offering an alternative perspective to the room and the relationship between the medical staff and my wife. The variety of forms and tools, the strong body language and communication that occurred in the final stages of delivery to the heroic and monumental moments of my child taking his first breath of fresh air.
I was intrigued by all the elements that came together to create the landscape where I would have the most important and beautiful experience of my life.
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