About

Background

Jean-Pierre Hugo Vargas holds a Bachelor of Arts in Writing and Literature with a concentration in Darkroom Photography. He has earned a Masters of Arts in Teaching English, as well as a Graduate Certificate in Conflict Transformation Across Cultures. 

He studied photographic composition and alternative process printing under the tutelage of Peaco Todd, and composed a portfolio in “Ratios in Visual Space,” under Sarah Bowen at Vermont College in Montpelier. He was supported in the craft of creative writing by Rickey Gard Diamond, and read literature and rhetoric as an undergraduate guided by professor Marty McMahon.  

After his baccalaureate studies he audited as many graduate courses as money allowed; from Latin American studies, to philosophy, human development, and world systems theory.  He formally entered graduate studies at the School for International Training, where, as the first student accepted into two separate graduate tracks simultaneously, studied Applied Linguistics, Teaching, Peace-building, and Conflict Transformation across cultures.  

Jean-Pierre is an autodidact and values the Dewey system of philosophical education as well as being a great admirer of Dr. Mortimer Adler’s holistic curricula on critical thinking and life long reading. He has authored two novels that need a home, “St. Lazarus the Pernicious and the Excommunicated Few,” and “The Place of the White Dog.” He has worked his fair share for pocket change and  “tobacco and whiskey cash,” at almost every newspaper in CT as a feature writer.  

Vargas is a talented musician, guitar player, and sound engineer, and also holds a professional certificate in audio production. One overarching goal is to affect change in others and to coalesce and crystallize human emotion and experience in every format he is gifted with working in; especially music, darkroom developing and printing film, sound design and music composition, as well as journalism and creative writing. 

He is employed currently as an Instructor in the School of Applied Liberal Arts and Sciences at a small CT University, bounded among the suburban sprawling hills of central Connecticut along the loamy shores and sandy embankments of that great New England river. 

Depending on the scope of his storytelling, he could be considered a legendary adventurer.  He has smuggled audio equipment into US embargoed countries and helped build community radio stations, and usually traipses through life’s dangerous situations with the grace of a thunderstorm.  He is currently studying for a second CMHC Masters counseling degree, hoping to help people work through trauma using dialog, creative, the arts and honesty.  He hopes to successfully accomplish with empathy, compassion hard work, love, and creativity.

Jean-Pierre has spent the majority of his developing adult years traveling and working to ameliorate conflict and violence around the world. His studies and work have taken him to Asia, Europe, Central and Eastern Africa, and South America. Jean-Pierre is Argentine-American, and has maintained and fostered close connections to the Latin and Afro-Latin communities in Hartford county. He enjoys weeks alone in the woods, camping and living minimally, fishing and sleeping under the stars in introspection and solitude during his semester breaks from teaching.


Giclée Printing Philosophy

Every image in the first “Europe 35mm Film Hand Developed” portfolio was developed by hand in complicated and many stepped color process.  Cheap materials were used; a bathtub, aluminum basting pans for washing, cheap hardware store piping for water temperature regulation and a healthy amount of jerry-rigged nonsensical accoutrements.  

The art is meant to be quick, fast, ugly, dirty. A 25 dollar kodak negative scanner was employed at the lowest resolution. The idea of the  Europe portfolio was to show an unaltered noisy, oversaturated, washed out and grainy look at the lack of human presence that is around us, and how solitude can be found surrounded by people and somehow crystallized with old and broken Minolta SRT 202 cameras, and lenses diffused with vaseline and pantyhose.  Some lenses were stuck on one aperture and required very creative methods for taking a proper exposure, others showed scratches and cracks. No attempts to remove dust, or damage to the scan was ever attempted. The world can, and has to be seen beautifully through an ugly and broken lens.  The only hope of the work is to somehow retain the faded analog charm of our collective human beauty.

No image will ever be reproduced more than 1000 times. 200 images per print size are allotted for printing. Once the 1000 copies have been printed, all negatives, and digital images of the print will be destroyed. They only remaining copy being the “Artist Copy” of the original print, and the prints that were sold. All prints are numbered, signed, printed, by Jean-Pierre Vargas personally. All come with a certificate of authenticity and matching unique hologram. The prints are delivered in 4 inch tubes gently rolled and wrapped in glassine sheets.

Absolutely no effort was made in digitally cleaning up any image. They are only meant to show the “art brut” side of the medium which Jean-Pierre considers forgotten. They are shown as he saw those moments.

*If a patron purchases more than one print, each will be shipped separately*

*Only one print will be shipped in each 4 inch tube*