The work of Ding initially focused on the concept of “bullet time” and “media transition” (what is time in photography? how do we perceive it?). She started by taking pictures of different kind of landscapes, trying to achieve this sensation of time being “frozen”; if time is frozen what is the essence of a picture? can a picture be a painting as well? what is the main difference between a picture and a painting/drawing? is it possible to make this difference become void?
What really makes a difference is the mechanical/automated process of the photographic media (camera and printer). She concentrates especially on this last one; The process of the printer is often overlooked. The machine seems to imitate the human’s behaviour in painting. After a picture has been printed by this idealistic “Mr. Printer” she continues his work with crayons by colouring all the pictures and producing this amazing media transition where 3 machines (camera, printer and the artist) cooperate all together on different levels of perception.
The first time we stand in front of this big images we feel astonished and confused at the same time, initially we don’t understand the nature of this work. If we look at them at a distance we think they are common photographs but if we look at close quarters we notice all these “material crayon traces” which are totally beautiful and mark her works in a very peculiar way.
The main difference between her first installation and this second one was the size of the “images”, which is bigger in this one and improved the level of detail. Another big change is that this time she focused on a new topic : rubbish. She “recycled” pictures illustrating rubbish that she found on the internet; she used the concept of reappropriatian which has a direct link with the process of media transition.
Anushka’s installation consists of 3 series of photographic prints with images of every day life situation, such as ducks in a pond or a sunset in the park. Each series is laid down in a different order: The first one is on the floor in a linear composition. This arrangement invites the viewer to read it from left to right, simulating a linear conception of the time. The second set of images is scattered on top of a table in no apparently order. The third one is also arranged in a linear composition on top of the same table, this time arranged diagonally from left to right
The idea behind this installation is the perception of time; Anushka is exploring the idea of time and duration from the Buddhist perspective of “Kshanika Vada” theory or the momentary existence of the reality. This theory states that nothing exists for any length of time. There is no substance or duration to things, and each moment is an entirely new existence. Controlling the shutter speed of the camera using a time-lapse technique she is trying to capture that perception of a moment. Like Arold Edgerton tried to capture time or movement in one frame. Anushka thinks that photography is not capable of capturing or understanding time. She believes that every time she captures a frame, endless things are left out. For this reason, it is impossible capture the time. Our perception of a moment consists of many other aspects that photography is unable capture.
The following comments and criticisms were observed on her work: There was too much going on; that the way in which the work was presented could be better; the way in which she has laid down the pictures was not consistent and confused the viewer somewhat. David liked the idea of repetition and, as repetition is one of the most important aspects of photography, he thinks that Anushka should explore this theme further. Anushka also thinks that the next step on her work would be working with moving image, it would be more acquired and easy to transmit the idea.
I presented a white dress made from a sheer fabric called organdy, inside a clear plastic dress made from PVC, with a pink carnation flower placed on top. The dress was laid down on the concrete floor. This was a follow on from the first installation of a white dress suspended from the ceiling.
During the viewing a discussion arose where most spectators, including myself, agreed that the previous installation was more effective when the white dress was suspended from the ceiling against a white background. One spectator commented on feelings of sadness; they felt like someone had passed away, another spectator made a reference to Ophelia.
The first time I installed the project I was very pleased with the outcome. The ideas I explored came from working with Aristotles theory of reversal in Storytelling, known as peripeteia (a reversal of circumstances or turning point in a story). For the second installation I tried to make theoretical links to understand the work in order to progress, but in practise it did not make sense.
I was curious to see what the same dress would look like in clear plastic. The install felt rushed as I focused mainly on the practical side but did not have time to link up my theoretical concerns. I felt even more confused about my direction after the install, but writing down my theoretical ideas in this review has helped me clarify my next steps forward.
At this stage of the process I accept that I don´t know exactly where I´m going but I am curious to see where it will take me; my desire is to make a dress out of flowers, considering permanence/impermanence, experiment with photographing/filming the dress as a way of accessing duration through images. And finally continue my exploration of the feminine sublime by reading the Beauty Myth.
Andrew’s piece ‘Untitled’ consisted of a leather sofa on which a duvet, pillow, coat and scarf were placed along with a backpack and flask alongside. In the centre of the sofa, a laptop was positioned showing a video of Andrew’s morning routine – getting up, preparing breakfast, selecting clothes, getting dressed, brushing teeth, collecting things together and placing them in his pockets before receiving a letter through the door before settling down to read and take notes from a book. The video ended with a cup of tea/coffee being drunk.
Andrew stated that within the last work he was illustrating desiring while this time he wished to bring the work back towards his own reality, in which the Granary Building is positioned as a desiring machine and he presents himself as the student or artist. He also explored the notion that the desire to be at Central Saint Martins perhaps happens mostly outside of CSM itself.
Andrew suggested he could develop the work further by extending it to include the journey between Central Saint Martins and home or even sleep in the Granary Building, even though this wouldn’t be possible within the strict rules of CSM’s use of the building, to which David suggested the work could be developed into a piece which explored conflicts.
I felt that with the laptop screen being the central piece of the installation, the scale of the sofa etc perhaps detracted from the video’s content a little and i’s overall important exaggerated and because of this, brought about an initial impression of Tracey Emin’s ‘My Bed’.
The key aspect of the discussion around the work was Andrew’s question “when does it become art?” and wonder if that perhaps the question that’s really being asked.
David suggested, “it is your decision when it is or isn’t” to which Andrew replied, “my indecision”
‘What do you see?‘ was written on the framed mirror which was mounted on the wall by Ilayda Bilgin. After she explained her idea concerning the mirror and the question on it, she took a hammer and smashed the mirror and screamed ‘what do you see now?!‘.
If I understood her explanation correctly she wanted to show that people do not need a special apparatus in order to ‘take‘ pictures. She said that human eyes and mind are some kind of camera in themselves where the eyes appear as shutters and the mind as a film/sensor. Without realizing this capability of our organs we see things around us differently, depending on the mood we are in. According to Ilayda duration is an experience which we may have by looking into a mirror and seeing faces there in a constant dynamic. Every time one looks into a mirror, every single time different person appears. Ilayda explained the final scene of smashing the mirror as an action of destroying the moment of her presents in the picture.
The reaction of the viewers was ambiguous. Since no one expected the mirror to be smashed, people were scared on the first place and then they started to laugh. All of us obviously were surprised and shocked by this performance. The main critique was that the object which Ilayda presented was too familiar to the public because of its everyday usage. Many people said that the action was too obvious and not original enough. However, there were suggestions that it could work on a bigger scale.
In my opinion the piece was interesting mainly because of its unexpectedness. I was impressed by the energetic persistence and passion of Ilayda’s performance, yet it is difficult for me to find the connection between a smashed mirror, human body as an aparatus for taking pictures and duration.
Neale presented a small screen showing images of cats, synced to a curious post modern soundtrack that demanded immediate attention. Placed on a white plinth, the machine had all its cables and inner workings visible around the screen itself.
The photographs of cats were sourced from reddit.com, as were the explicit images used to generate the sound in this piece; the reasoning behind this decision being that the most common images on the website are of cats and of pornographic material, which the spectators found to be an aesthetically interesting experience.
References were made to a desiring machine and a Frankenstein monster because of all the cables that were visible. The audience interpretations varied from finding the sounds and images funny, whilst others found the sound difficult to listen too and experienced a sensory overload. David found the aesthetic of the piece intriguing, and the physical materiality interesting as he could see how the machine was working.
Neale described the work as ´the internet wrapped in a box´ and ´an object of desire´. He described the black box as a machine where peoples desires pass through when using the internet, he did not feel the need to summarise his exact intentions at this early stage of the process. David posed the following questions; does the internet have an opinion of its own? Are algorithms opinions? Could the work be more seductive and immersive? Neale was open to experimenting with interactive elements.
Artist mentioned in relation to the brief: John Rafman; ´Jon Rafman is an artist and filmmaker whose work examines the effects of contemporary technology, particularly on interpersonal relationships.´ Seventeen Gallery
Cornford & Cross; New Holland, (1997) and 10, (1998).
Will Webster´s installation ¨whole/hole¨ follows up on his previous window series, exploring the deconstruction of an image. The arising inquiry when contemplating this body of work introduces the question of where this seeming attack on photography and its purpose are coming from. Will´s work encourages the viewer to reassess the preciousness and position of the photograph itself. This is reenforced through presenting both images in wooden frames, therefore doubly confirming them and consequently hinting to the constrictions and containment photography can encounter. Suspending the artwork from the ceiling adds to the elements of space and time within the artist´s work. The considered incisions on one of the photographs seem to echo a rather visceral attack on the print yet their colluding with the converging parallels in fact state a constructive process. Thus, the paper is turned into a binary object. The second photograph displays a torn hole, reminding the audience furthermore of an explosion. This could be viewed as the artists´s representation of emotion. It´s the absence of geometric terms when speaking about photographs which lead Will Webster to make use of spacial and compositional abilities in order to bring out a second life in the photograph. This approach in particular might give rise to additional research regarding geometry and geometric psychology. The fact that he chooses to oppose rationality and emotions, on one hand identifies the artist´s recent reflections on learnings, on the other hand concurrently alludes to the core of his main inquiry.
John Stezaker´s body of work, specifically his collages are among the suggestions of artists to research. He is particularly interesting in terms of his reaction to the predominance of specific movements within art. Fellow artist Gustav Metzger´s work on the contrary concerns the formulation of what destruction is and what it might be in relation to art.
She is trying to convey the image as a safe place, as memory, and as a recollection of memories where is built the idea of duration. In other words, where is built our personal experience of being alive. Candice wanted to express the idea of different kinds of durations: there was cosmic duration, because time is the same for everyone, and personal duration, because time differs with each person. Duration is the same for all of us, but everyone experiences it in different modes. For this installation, Candice continued her previous idea about the fragility of human life and inner experience, but in contrast with different scales of “time” – cosmic, earth, human, so to speak. There was a big photograph, where she wanted to express the immensity of the black void of the universe, with no shape at all, in contrast with small, instant like, images of her everyday life, arrayed in a corner and overlapping the big image of the “universe”. Next to other photographs, a negative image of herself is on a ladder trying to build or trying to hold something heavy. I thought, at first sight, the image was a metaphor of the mythological primordial titan, Atlas, who held up the celestial spheres, but actually it was a “caryatid“. Under this image, there were two “earthy” images of rocks and arid land, the means of which for some classmates was not clear: they did not find a connection. In this installation she tried to unify her images because in the previous one she was criticised, with claims that the different photographs did not have unity or cohesion between them. However, David, for this installation, thought she could perhaps achieve a greater display, because somehow it was a bit rigid, and the reading of the images was not sufficiently challenging, and closer to photographic tropes. But Candis pointed out that her intention was to express that insignificance of our life in contrast with the universe, and I think the installation expressed it. It was her personal experience expressed in photographs but it was also images everyone can connect with and experience as familiar in a poetic language rather than in a complicated language. Some questioned whether her installation was too far away from the brief, but I don’t accept that, because it could be read in different ways.
Firstly, when I saw Maria’s installation, I felt like going back from present to past because it reminds me old times. She tries to show us with an old technic that how to approach duration in her style. During the installation, there was a slide machine in the middle of the room, which makes noises and reflections with slide images. The image, which Maria used was very simple but at the same time it was very strong. Although, there was a figure inside of the image, which makes us distracted. Further, the image was very intense, especially colors of the image.
Maria’s purpose was to show overlapping memories in her way because she related to duration with memories. That’s why she wanted to use one picture with a slide machine. She tries to combine new ideas with an old technics and is really interested in old technics because she thinks they are still undiscovered enough. Moreover, Maria believes that past memories of people are actually relates to our present and future. In that sense, memories of people have overlapping day by day. Actually, it is very difficult to understand if the memories are from past or future.
When people make comment about Maria’s work, Victoria said that slide machine is very sophisticated object to use and she remembered her childhood photos and old times. Adding that, people can see the slide machine physically. On the other hand, Will has got different opinions that he said the dust in the air is obvious and people can see the dust in front of image. Basically, Maria’s intention was to combine old technics with duration. She has got the attention from people who were in the class during installation.
David’s comment was about developing methodology rather than context. According to him, there would be different approach if there were more than one image because people desire to see more images. At the end, he pointed out that the image has got a figure inside which could be unnecessary.