Thursday, November 29, 2012

David Hockney, Space and the Unphotographable

'We see space through time...somehow you make space in your head' - David Hockney, 2011

David Hockney discusses the process of making his painting 'A Closer Grand Canyon', interviewed by Christian Lund at Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in April 2011 as part of the Louisiana Talks series.
In the discussion he talks about representing space, spatial perception through vision, the limitations of single lens photography and 3d film and the potential for representing space through multiple viewpoints.

The grand canyon is a notoriously difficult space to represent. Hockney discusses how when there, you are forced to move your head to look around and into the space - there is no perspectival view, no point of focus, and how at times the space alternates between being deeply spatial and a flat canvas in front of the viewer. (The scene at the end of the Truman Show comes to mind)

He discussed how as he tried to photograph the Grand Canyon (see below) he realises it is unphotographable, saying that 'cameras push things away....(they) always make things a little more distant'. He found that photographing it, even as a collage with multiple perspectives flattens the sense of space.

The Grand Canyon South Rim with Rail, Arizona, Oct. 1982. Photographic Collage, 43x137 in.

The Grand Canyon South Rim with Rail, Arizona, Oct. 1982. Photographic Collage, 43x137 in.

So instead, he painted it - using smaller canvases to make one large immersive canvas that the viewer 'scans'  As the viewer scans the piece, the image of the space forms in their head. The representation is immersive, direct but more crucially navigated by the viewer. They form an embodied image of the landscape.

He then goes on to relate this to work he is currently making using nine cameras to represent the landscape in Yorkshire.

A Closer Grand Canyon, 1998 oil on 60 canvases 81x291 in.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Developing ideas as you work

John Szarkowski speaks about ideas and working on a project.
'You can't solve artistic problems in your head, and then execute them. In real life you never know what the answer is. You have to work through it until you can't go any further and you think that must be the answer.'

It brings to mind Mies van der Rohe's statement 'Build, don't talk'.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Street View and Photography

This post is prompted by an essay by Geoff Dyer entitled:
The Believer: "Street View: On Photographers' Appropriation of Google Maps" 
In it, he talks about the work of three photographers - Doug Rickard, Michael Wolf and Jon Rafman, all of whom are photographers that mine Google Street View and represent our environment back to us.

Doug Rickard - 'A New American Picture'  

D. Rickard - #82.948842, Detroit, MI. 2009, 2010

Doug Rickard - #39.177833, Baltimore, MD. 2008, 2011

Doug Rickard - #40.805716, Bronx, NY. 2009, 2011

D. Rickard – #40.805716, Bronx, NY. 2009, 2011

Michael Wolf - Street View Manhattan

Michael Wolf - Street View Manhattan, Image 01

Michael Wolf - Street View Manhattan, Image 07

Michael Wolf - Street View Manhattan, Image 21

Jon Rafman -

Jon Rafman -, untitled

Jon Rafman -, untitled
Jon Rafman -, untitled

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Thursday, June 28, 2012

I Want to Live Close to You - Jacob Fellander

"I wondered, if space drifts over time, perhaps can time drift over space"
 - Jacob Fellander

New York, 2011-03-24

Los Angeles, 2011-03-25

Paris, 2011-04-01

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The one that got away...

Photographers discuss the photographs that didn't quite work for