Surfaces and strategies – weeks 10 and 11

I have devoted much time and thought to finalising the oral presentation (which I have recorded and re-recorded several times) as well as the selection and sequencing of the images for the work-in-progress portfolio. In order to give context to the images, I have now added titles, in most cases brief quotations from the poets’ verse. In the case of the oral presentation, the feedback was essentially to include more references to the work of other photographers, speed up the narration and add more images. I believe the final version covers these points.

As this module is now largely completed, I took the opportunity to visit the Tate Modern on London’s South Bank where there are currently two interesting exhibitions, one showing works by Martin Parr, the other being “The Shape of Light”, an exploration of the relationship between abstract art and photography.

The Martin Parr exhibition includes images from his British seaside series, “The Last Resort”,  a projected display of images from his sequence entitled  “Luxury” (a satirical view of the lifestyles of the super-rich) and, of particular interest to me in the light of my major project, an eclectic selection of Parr’s photo books.

Part of the display of Martin Parr’s photo books.


From Martin Parr’s “Luxury” (2009)


The Shape of Light exhibition investigates  the various genres of abstract photography over the past 100 years, from cubism (represented by the work of Pierre Dubreuil) to contemporary impressionism, where, in the prophetic words of László Moholy-Nagy (“Fotografie ist Lichtsgestaltung”, Bauhaus, Vol.ii, no.1, 1928):

“The main instrument of the photographic process is not the camera, but the photosensitive layer.”

As examples of this approach, the exhibition includes works by contemporary photographers such as Alison Rossiter (from her series Gevaert Gevaluxe Velours, 2017) and Paul Graham (from his series Films, 2011).

The many other photographers whose work is exhibited include Man Ray, André Kertész and Ed Ruscha (represented by Thirty Four Parking Lots in Los Angeles, 1967).

Gevaert Gevaluxe Velours (Alison Rossiter, 2017)

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