Shalom Life | September 19, 2014

May Karp Talks Yin Yang

The photographer chats with Shalom Life about her latest exhibit

By: Ilan Mester

Published: October 23rd, 2011 in Culture » Art » Interviews

May Karp Talks Yin Yang

May Karp has a new exhibit that runs until Nov. 12 at Toronto’s IX Gallery. Shalom Life interviewed the photographer about her latest exhibit and what got her into the art of photography.

What drew you to photography?

I can’t remember. I was very young when I had a camera and used it. I set it aside for a while when I studied composition, design and painting in later years. After retirement from business I picked it up again in earnest.

Growing up, who were some of the artists and photographers that you admired?

I grew up in a home full of culture and was familiar with the great artists’ work and the famous musicians of the time. I admired them all and had the pleasure of meeting some. My late mother Mary Harris took me to concerts from the time I was young, and my late dad Sam Harris was manager of the Jewish Folk Choir when Emil Gartner was conductor and that was very much a part of our family life.

What inspired your latest exhibit, Yin Yang?

About Yin Yang: that ancient Taoist philosophy claims that there is some good in evil and some evil in good. That life is not black and white and Yin needs Yang to be complete and Yang needs Yin to be complete. I was intrigued by the fact that Marshall McLuhan said about YinYang, “I am being pulled in opposite directions between the known and unknown, somewhere between man’s deepest fears and his highest hopes.”

How would you describe the exhibit?

It is energetic, strong, unusual and varied. There is a short personal few words beside each one explaining a bit of what and why.

What advice would you give to aspiring photographers?

Take a lot of shots and don’t worry too much about settings and numbers. Let your eye, brain and gut guide you.

What’s next for you?

To stay healthy and keep on doing what I enjoy. I don’t plan too far in advance.

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