Damn, I have been circumscribed - Nothing to do with tackle, it means drawn around - But yes, I live in the forest 360Km from the nearest city and refuse to go there, then curse Australia Post for their wretched delivery times when I have prints to get to international collectors
Originally Posted by batwister
However, the article as a whole is very pertinent and the subject is a needed relief from the constant "what new/old camera I have bought" boredom that infests this site
Firstly, I understand photography to be a fundamentally documentary medium, in that EW's nautilus shell existed as a visual event which EW documented, this is also true for the strange works of Joel-Peter Witkin, which were also visual events in front of his camera
In these enlightened days of post-modernism, which I never really grasped, photography, initially the archetypal modernist medium (Rodschenko, Molohy-Nage, Strand and some WC Americans), seems to have fallen into a neo-romantic cess pit, with some workers going out of their way to find ancient Petzval lenses, use wet-plates and make bromoil prints, a print form the pre-WWII London Salon was guilty of regularly exhibiting - There is a current thread on loving paper negs - Grow up!
The question asked is how we can use the medium in a progressive way - To do this is to firstly open our eyes to the world around us, which in its mass media and mass communication is very much a digitally shown world - How many of us on APUG write to our friends with a fountain pen on the back of test prints, apart from me?
The problem I find on a practical level with deaesthetisising (spell check does not like that nor does OED) silver jelly photography is the reading of the medium itself, for the romantic/historical reasons listed - During the SW Australian Karri Forest Protest of the mid to late 1990s I used silver jelly to document the destruction of the forest and the defense by dedicated forest activists - Even during the height of the protest I would get comments like "Wow, look at the beautiful fall of forest light [over that clearfell coupe]" - Much of that work is now in the collection of the National Library of Australia historical collection as fine selenium etc prints and is viewed as very historical
The urban and decayed landscape photo-documentation I see aestheticises the subject just as badly as pretty views of farmland or sea spray
Turning to digital visual recording media, I don't see a difference in the way things are depicted, with modernism, post-modernism or whatever is now, effecting no real change in my view - I see it this way and am open to argument - In this regard GIMP and Photoshop have are used indiscriminately to aestheticise the depicted world
I don't see a path out of the way still images are perceived - I still remember the newspaper image of the second airliner banking to the left to fit into the second World Trade Centre tower - As well as a horrific moment, it is a visually stunning image which in my mind instantly de-contexturlised itself from the subject on account of its pictorial nature - I will probably cop a lot of flack for that comment, but I believe it to be true - I looked at the image as image rather than cry for what happened a second later - I can't feel guilt about this, it is part of our visual upbringing and probably happened to other viewers as well
So, I have failed to answer the problem and not really posed any way through other than to seek every greater clarity in what I see and choose to photography and print - It is held that those who ignore history will repeat it, with photography it can be said that those who know history choose to repeat it
Last edited by John Austin; 04-20-2012 at 11:14 PM. Click to view previous post history.