These new images come from a desire to treat the women in the fashion magazines more as a portrait subject. The more I look into my interest in taking these images, the more I realize that I actually really love the imagery. I was talking a lot about light, disregard for fashion images by combining them, the way advertising uses anything we feel we lack to sell us on what we need. I’m not sure I’m actually that objective. There is a reason that I choose to use fashion images over news. I am also seduced by the intangibility of the allure of these ads. They’re strange and unrealistic, yet, they fit into our real lives. It felt good to take the images in the way that I did today. It’s like I took a little bit of control back from the process. Rather than sticking to rules about documentation (page on the window -> shoot straight on), I was able to manipulate, frame, use the texture of the page and printing, while still revealing the front/back relationship that is my primary interest.
My work is visually inspired by materiality and the demotic; and conceptually inspired by intangibility, entropy and personal experiences. It explores the spaces that exist in between one thing and another that tends to go unnoticed. Whether it is between one page and the next or one definition and another, there is an intangible beauty in these changing times.
Finding ways to translate the moments between two things has found many outputs for me. I have created a series of photographs that compress the images on the front and backside of a printed page by shining light through and capturing the image at the moment when they are both showing at the same time. In another vein, by coating balloons with various materials while they are blown up I am able to allude to both the state of inflation and deflation as the shell shrivels around the collapsing balloon. They are depictions of something unattainable, yet the result is something new and strange in and of themselves. Each of these illustrated moments about these non-states can translate as anything from uncanny to feelings of loss or gain. I am interested in seeing what happens when each of these representations are combined with each other as they embody a similar idea but exude such different content.
I first consciously connected with this idea of transient beauty in Reineke Dijkstra’s beach series. The subjects of these photographs were neither children nor adults, they were neither clothed nor naked, they stood partly in the water and partly on land. The scenes are completely awkward and beautiful at the same time which was completely riveting for me.
I finally own the book that contains these images! What a great Christmas gift…thank you!
I spent a couple hours tonight reading and looking at Tell It Slant: Lesley Dill (book). I really love her ideas and the way that she thinks around things. While I am not interested in using words or figures in my work, I connect with the poetic ideas. Here are some images of her work for reference:
Homage to N.S., 1997
In reading, I realized that I am often stuck by a word or a phrase and sometimes the context doesn’t even matter, just the beauty of the words together or the idea they emit alone. I have tons of underlined statements, transcribed sentences and recorded ideas. It seems like the canopy that connects these ideas is over my head, but just out of my minds reach. I’m not sure if I should be satisfied with the longing to make the connection or if I should continue to try to connect. Sometimes the longing is the most interesting point. Here are some glimpses of the snippets I was turned on to tonight:
“I have given my whole life to words-
chewed this dog hunger into a long meal.” -Salvador Espriu
— – —- — —— –
“Clothing houses the house that houses the soul.” -John Leland
Vision vs. Visions
“A Word made flesh” -Emily Dickinson
…Like paragraphs of Wind-” -Emily Dickinson
“…variations of black-and-white: swamp trees silhouetted against the endless snow of Maine; inky black sypte floating on the page of a book; the lakes of the Adirondack Mountains, so dark they mirror the clouds…” -images from Lesley Dill’s conversations
Beauty is poetic not cosmetic. -paraphrased quote from LD book
“My business is circumference.” -Emily Dickinson
“The tops of my dress sculptures are small and flat, but the skirts are voluminous. This kind of compression-versus-expansion is in all of my works.” -Lesley Dill
“the contaminated subjective” -Karen Jacobs
“What do we see in the space of the mind behind the eye?” -Lesley Dill
I like the lack of color in this color image. I like the way the exposure from each photo comes together. I like the vertical flow. I like the mundane nature of the subject matter. I like how there is tension between electricity and water.
The balloons are coming to a point where I really need to figure out some solutions for resolving the forms and the installation. I had hoped that this critique would allow me to get some feedback on relationships between the forms, the coverings…etc.
I had the privilege to critique with photographer/artist Collier Schorr on Friday! She was visiting Cranbrook to lecture for the Cranbrook museum show I showed two different sets of images. The first was a continuation of the magazine images in the window. I printed a 60×40 inch image which is my largest to date. The second set were from the TV transition series. I need to continue to explore what makes a set of either of these images cohesive, but I got some good feeback from Collier and also started to understand my desire to control these images. I used to think that my main interest was documenting and finding these strange combinations, but in talking through some of the logistics of fashion shoots and portraiture, I realized that I am sort of treating the subjects of the images as real subjects. For this to come through in the images, I know that I need to push the evidence of this more, but I am excited to try it!
I spent this past week out of my studio and in our installation space in the sculpture department at Cranbrook since my biggest challenge lately has been after I’ve made my objects or images knowing what to do with them! It was great to see everything I had made come out from under the shelves in my studio and sit out in the same space together! The following images are from one of the practice installations I did. I definitely could have spent more time arranging and hanging more of the fuzz that I have, but I was thinking of this exercise more as a sketch. As with most of my projects, I found an interest in this material a couple of months ago and have been living with it in my studio.
I’m hoping to complete a video concerning the collecting of the material, but we’ll have to see how that goes.
Since the images I took all came from bound, printed material, I decided to bind my versions. The book is only 5×7, which is slightly smaller than I would ultimately print it, but overall I am happy with the way it came out. I chose a variety of images from a variety of magazines. I enjoy the way the spreads entered into the book because of the process they went through (spread, single image, spread). There is a consistency within all the layers of removal that makes the journey away from the original image interesting for me. Some of the pages have one side of the magazine page backed by the other side so that when you put it up to light, they come together pushing my point as far as possible.
I have begun playing with and thinking about other transitional moments that we encounter; one example are the TV images above. My interest is in the natural (dripping, deflating, compression, combination) that comes from either a material I am interested in or from a collective experience that we all have (use of packaging, driving a car, reading a magazine, watching TV…etc.). I find an element of these things that I find intriguing or difficult to notice to because of the momentum of our lives and spend time with it. Paying attention to the spaces around an object, the meaning within it, the properties. I want to slow down, be present and notice!