RESEARCH 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 - Crewdson, Export, Wurm, Peirone and inspiration - Too Good to be Photographed

I started my research by looking at the artists who are working with the themes of the failure in various forms. The passion for unexpected and so often called failure came from my previous project “Unwanted” which examines different approaches to the failure. The main inspiration was a project ”Too Good To Be Photographed” by Paul Paper. The project consists of photographs that have been sent to the artist as spare/not suitable images. Some of which were out of focus or odd looking, with unnatural poses.  The project fascinated me so much I wanted to incorporate some of the ideas to my current work. 

This time I am focusing more on the awkwardness of the model and what is called unsuitable pose for a good photograph. I find myself feeling awkward when having a picture taken by someone else, therefore I would like to translate that awkwardness or the oddness of the body through the images, which I also find humorous.

For further research on the body and the awkwardness I looked at the project ”More Than Violet” by Julia Peirone. Her work mostly concentrates on the uncomfortable imagery of teenage girls, when photographer clicked the shutter before the girls were picture ready. Personally, I do not like the project very much, but I appreciate the idea, which further inspires my work. I also understood that my idea for the project is nothing like Peirones’ work.

I came across Gregory Crewdson work a couple years ago and it still fascinates me how his work transforms my imagination to the scene. At first, I didn’t like Crewdson’s work as it seemed “too cinematic” for my liking. In 2017 I was one of the selected students to speak about one particular photograph - ”Mother and Daughter” at The Photographers’ Gallery which in a way, forced me to thoroughly research the artist and his thinking behind the images. The more I researched and looked at the project the more it fascinated me. All of the hidden clues and props have a deeper meaning, which might not come across obvious at first. These highly staged images also are sending a very personal message which is linked to the forest. The people in the landscape are as important as the forest itself and the viewers get to recreate their own narrative because there isn’t one. 

Valie Export is another artist that inspired my project. The visual language that the photographer is portraying becomes very sculptural and engaging. She photographs herself as part of the environment. Her inner-state suggests the body postures which are part of the architecture or nature. Her work is very performative, she poses herself before carefully setting the scene. 

I think my work is very similar to hers contextually and visually, as it has the odd body performance, the nature and the architecture links to it. 

A big inspiration for my project comes from Erwin Wurm work. His ”One Minute Sculptures” or ”Brothers and Sisters” projects gives me a feeling of quick and simple setup, but at the same time very complex situation. I enjoy looking at his projects as they seem effortless, like someone stood up and quickly took a picture, but also he has put a lot of thinking before taking a photograph. It feels like the subjects are going through a tough time and their body positions reflects on that. 

For my own project I am trying to take a similar take - set up a camera and place myself in it, without too much thinking once the camera is ready. It is performing to the camera, for myself and the landscapes. 

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