Note to PHO2008 & DIS2601

siology is a collection of thoughts, inspirations and creative processes which have contributed to my practice in first, second, and now third year studying photomedia and art.

Monday, 30 April 2012

Houses and Homes

I've been hunting for that single, disrupting image to put at the end of the book, as an ode to Ruscha's glass of milk and also as a tool for altering natural viewing habits and for shock factor/confusion. Looking back on where this project started, at the shells of homes I lived in as a child, I feel a photograph of a house, a simple, physical building, would be appropriate. It is catagorically unrelated to the shells so will seem random and thus be effective as a shock, but also has conceptual integrity for what I'm looking at in terms of meaning, if you can call it that, and so it's not a cheap trick or rip off. I hope.
I'm going to take this photo right now, today. The house will have to be right but I hope, as with the rest of the book, the subject itself it less important than its place within the entire book. More importantly, how do I take the photo? The Bechers instantly come to mind.
it looks like a house. just a house, not a home. love that indexical, straight shot.
Funnily enough, the Becher's also made books!

Ed Ruscha: interview

"It was a big soup of influence,’ Ruscha says. 'I found myself being influenced by everything: things I liked and things I didn’t like; even the half-way stuff pushed me along." - Ruscha, Telegraph

NOTE for artist statement. 
I criticize the high art aura with deliberate hypocrisy, elevating meaningless photographs on white walls and plinths. It is important that this dialogue comes from within a self-referent medium, and that irony, self-awareness and satire come into play. 

The ideologies of Ed Ruscha, Roland Barthes, Walter Benjamin and Marcel Duchamp have fuelled this approach, and are deliberately referenced in the final work - for example the final page of my book mimics the milk in Ruscha's Various Small Fires

Ed Ruscha, complete collection


Sculptural elements

Question. The wall arrangement will be 'random', staggered, and varied in size, style, etc. These elements, when concerned with photography, are two-dimensional. Will there be a third dimension?

  • shadow boxes
  • thick mounting
  • prints displayed flat on the floor
  • actual sculptural elements ie mandarine peel sitting on the floor
  • shelves?
  • the stack of books
  • attachment/hanging techniques such as pins, thick double sided tape...


Another shell... remember this one!

Space - Wall arrangement

I've been fiddling with composition, image selection, size, arrangement of final gallery presentation etc on the computer, and it's been really difficult to imagine the actual spacial relationships without having real prints to play with. So the next step will be printing, and then hanging, either at a mock up size or real size. So far Adobe illustrator has helped with image selection, a little arranging, and that's about it.


Monday, 16 April 2012

Cover and Typology

Ruscha was fascinated by the actual physical form of text on a page, hence his obsession with signs and lettering. The books he published all had simple, factual tities, but the words were also selected by Ruscha because he liked them as words in themselves - for example he really liked the word gasoline and that inspired his series of gasoline stations. I am drawn to the word 'empty', and I also feel it's a meaningful part of my work with shells. I also like the word 'assorted', and I feel the subject matter and photos I'm presenting are assorted - not 'collected' or 'various'. I could have used a number, like 'nineteen', but I think this is too harsh and also too close to Ruscha's books.

Friday, 13 April 2012

Other Shells

Subject matter and image selection tends toward the uncanny, and has been useful in disrupting tendencies toward a narrative or index; however it does not lead the work.

Monday, 2 April 2012

Avoiding Narrative

There will always be a 'risk' (not always a bad risk) in presenting an unexplained body of work to an uninformed viewer, who will undoubtedly form their own assumptions about such an obscure series. Some of these assumptions may involve an unintended narrative, or a sense of some deeper meaning which the artists did not specifically set out to explore.
I can help obscure this tendency by taking a leaf out of Ruscha's book - and including seemingly irrelevant photographs which have nothing to do with an eggshell, randomly scattered throughout the series. For example, a glass of milk at the end of a photobook of fire photographs or a broken glass in a book of swimming pool photos.

Wolfgang Tillmans


I think this style of presentation really works for the type of photos I'm taking. It manages to present a cohesive body of work, while avoiding any tendencies toward a logical narrative, sequence or archive. While I would still love to create an 'art object' book like Ruscha, there is something about presenting photographs in a certain order that implies some kind of timeline or story. I want steer clear of this because I'm looking specifically at form, materiality, meaninglessness and exterior aesthetic.
Perhaps a table setting could be good, i could place a stack of the book on the table with some other photographs and objects

Tim Silver

Many of my photographs so far have recorded the aftermath of an event, and their narrative comes from hinting at what would have lead up to the photograph (and egg shell smashed on a doorstep, for example). Tim Silver records (through photography) the actual process of deterioration, which might be something for me to look at. Maybe I will photograph an egg shell or a fortune cookie at different points of being broken/pulverized. As in this series, the object will become more abstract and less recognizable throughout the 'sequence'.