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'Is it a photograph or is it a painting'? This is the question most asked at our exhibitions.
We are Elena Comens & Barnett Comens.
We are a mother and son team who have combined talents to produce a professional studio for photography and art since 1985.
Elena is an award winning and accredited documentary photographer and artist.
Born and raised in New York
The major emphasis of Elena's photographs is in the field of documentary photography and portraiture.
The nonverbal language of photo-realism is the language that is most understood inter-culturally and cross culturally.
Some have used the phrase visual anthropology to describe her work.
Barnett has a background in art and design plus is self taught in many aspects of digital photography and image enhancement.
Barnett also enjoys documentary as well as the more commercial aspects of photography.
'Elena Comens' studio manipulated pieces result in intentionally jarring work.' Phyllis Braff, The New York Times
'Powerful images capture the mood and spirit of a particular time and place. Conscious artistry in black and white, lyrical and haunting. A fully realized exhibition.' Elizabeth Wix, N.Y. Newsday
'Ms. Comens has captured the handsome faces of Guatemala’s Mayan people. The haunting composition has rich subject matter and depth; it shows a painter’s sensibility.' Denise Mourges, The New York Times
'Work of Elena Comens spans three continents and wide view of the human condition. The result is a body of work, which contains profound and haunting images.' The Northport Journal
'Elena possesses that rare ability to make extraordinary images out of ordinary situations. She approaches her subject with the eyes of an artist and the mind of a documentarian and the combination, I believe, leads to her extraordinary work. Her work consistently shows the involvement, creativity and intelligence that comes from an artistic dedication, understanding and maturity.'
Susan Dooley, Professor of Photojournalism, Long Island University
'Once again, City Link canvasses South Florida for the people who have set their inner artists free. One such artist, Elena Comens with her dignified, life affirming black-and-white photographs of people in Russia, Guatemala and Israel, more talent from the following pages than millionaires from the deck of the Titanic.'
' Best of the Gallery Exhibition' Jake Cline, City Link, Ft.Lauderdale, FL
Review of Schacknow Museum 'The magnificent Eleven': 'Schacknow's one real find here is the photographer Elena Comens.'The Comens photos are powerful in their stark directness. Such images provide an atmospheric commentary on unstable societies in flux. Comens' work deserves the main gallery all to itself.'
New Times Broward-Palm Beach, Michael Owens