Thursday, November 18, 2010

Ok, maybe I should explain.

Plus, I have to write an artists statement and get my head around this stuff for Monday(it's my turn to have a group crit/installation thingy!).

Ok, so for me my new work is talking about, or at least attempting to talk about, a lot of different things. Possibly the most important thing to say first is that it is about photography. I realise I have some problems with photography and this new project considers that.
Essentially what I am doing is replacing objects or moments with a photograph (or collection of photographs) of that object or moment. I am trying to reference the ideas about photographs as documents, as memories, as memento mori, as representations and re-presentations, as art. I am uncomfortable with a lot of the roles photography performs, and am interested in what it really means to take and show a photograph, and to look at a photograph. I suppose I am trying to out photography by putting photograph back into the context they were taken from, rephotographing them, and this time putting them in the context of art, where they can be explored and their mystery unraveled. The main influences on these works without a doubt are my understandings of David Hockney's views of perception and conception in his photocollages, and my misunderstanding of Magritte's paintings as conceptual works more than surreal works.

A big question hanging over the work at the moment is how important is it to be technically accurate. Originally perfection was my intention, I just didnt realise how difficult that would be. And I really liked the first failures! But it defintely needs to be considered because different things happen in each type of image. For instance, a technically perfect image might look real. ie, not like photography, maybe with a hint that something is off. Less perfect scales and colours tend to look more visually appealing, but perhaps then the viewer is more confused by what it is I am trying to do. More experimentation is the way to resolve this.

Another issue is the content. I have to be aware that the things I photograph have meanings of their own that will naturally become relevant, and find a balance between seeking out appropriate things and photographing more bland(?) things so the content doesn't overpower the subject.

I know I have loads more to say but since nothing more is coming to my head Ill leave with this for now, and perhaps add additional comments later.
I guess the work is pretty conceptual, but it's also a lot of fun! It's becoming more and more tongue-in-cheek as I realise I can purposefully replace things incorrectly, for instance the male and female images on a bathroom door. There seems to be lots that can happen with this and for the moment I am enjoying getting carried away. There will be plenty of time for pinning it down soon enough.

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