Neeko Paluzzi (b. 1988) is a Canadian artist and educator whose practice focuses on conceptual installation. His images blend the possibilities of traditional, analogue darkroom processes with contemporary photographic techniques, such as 3D scanning and printing. He is the winner of the 2018 Project X, Photography Grant from the Ottawa Arts Council and recently had a featured exhibition at the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.
In Paluzzi’s The Goldberg variations, there are thirty-two photographs, each visualizing a single Aria or Variation from Bach’s score recorded by Glenn Gould in 1955 and 1981. The 1955 recording, in particular, reinvigorated an interest in Bach’s Goldberg Variations because of Gould’s fast-paced tempi and clinical finger movements, bringing the baroque composer into the 20th century. As an older and more reserved performer, Gould’s second recording, in 1981, was noticeably different with a slower tempo overall. The top portion of the photograph visualizes Gould’s 1955 recording, whereas the bottom portrays the 1981 recording. In order to match the tonal range of a particular piece of music, Paluzzi uses darkroom equipment as a musical instrument, operating the aperture of the enlarger lens, contrast filters, and the timer to make sound into light.