‘Fragments of a vessel which are to be glued together must match one another in the smallest details although they need not be like one another.’
(Walter Benjamin,  1999, p.79) –
Page 51 Photography 1: Expressing your Vision – University of the Creative Arts
The Quote was taken from Assignment 2, just before the brief in the course materials. The reason I have decided to put this onto my page is because I feel this quote is very strong and really helped me understand more about the assignment.
Obviously, this quote wasn’t created for this purpose, but Walter does have a point. It is like a puzzle, to create the vessel, the fragments need to be slotted together, not matter how big or small, and they do not have to be like each other, as long as they fit. This is relatable because in photography and this assignment it is important that the images, to make the collection need to glue together, and can relate in the smallest of detail, but they do not need to be of the same thing in order to make the collection, but the smallest aspect of the images needs to be relatable.
This could focus on pattern, or the same object within each image and so on.
Joel Meyerowitz is a perfect example, although the surroundings change, the main subject stays the same, and this can make a collection of images representing the same object.
So, for me this quote gives a good example of collection, and relatable in the brief.
In the text there is also mention about the difference between landscape and views and a theoretical discussion about the difference.
‘Photography’s Discursive Spaces: Landscape/View’ gave an insight to this and I did read a large proportion of it. Whilst some of it to me seemed hard to understand, I did fall upon some interesting parts.
The most notable:
The reason I pulled this extract is because I feel that what was being said was that recent photographers are claiming that given images are ‘landscapes rather than views’.
I feel this is interesting, and could have much debate, my personal preference is neither. I feel that landscape is the scape of the land and that the view, is what you see. But I thought it was interesting that there was an in-depth article about this.
In conclusion, I will be going to Iceland with ‘views’ in mind, may be landscape, cityscape, or something abstract. Who knows. But I feel that this is an interesting read and that it is worth a mention in my research as I did have a look into it.
(Photography’s Discursive Spaces: Landscape/View, College Art Association, Page 315, Paragraph 3, Art Journal, Vol. 42, No. 4, The Crisis in the Discipline,Winter, 1982)
Albert Renger-Patzsch, Andrew Langford & Bettina Von Zwehl
I briefly looked at Albert Renger-Patzsch, Andrew Langford & Bettina von Zwehl’s work and decided it was not the path I wanted to take for this research or at all in the assignment. But as I learnt early on, even if I do not want to use or talk about them in much depth, I should always mention that I looked at their work as it shows I have done a broad range of research. The reason I am not talking about these artists in depth is because I am not looking at doing heads, and collections with plain backgrounds or the same type of work. However, I do feel that their work is very interesting, and clearly shows collections and collections of ‘things’. I did feel that all aspects of the work were very carefully thought out and executed well.
Fay Godwin is an artist whose work I feel is powerful, beautiful and constant. I have already researched her previously on this degree and her name popped into my head again when I was thinking of work relating to views. Views, landscapes, whatever you want to call it are amazing. They are usually breath-taking and make for a good photograph, no matter who you are.
The reason Godwin entered my mind again is because of the composition of her images and how even a lot of her work is ‘uniform’. A lot of Godwin’s work leads they eye and contains a lot of lines, not to mention her work to do with restricted areas. Therefore, as I am looking to do ‘Views’ in Iceland, I feel her work is relevant and a really good idea for me to think about and concentrate on when looking for inspiration.
In the course materials, the OCA talks about Miyako and her work on Hiroshima. I watched the video attached, which shows Jörg Colberg flick through her photobook. The photobook shows items of clothing after the bombing and is really interesting to view. You can see that they are all damaged and all show different textures in relation to how badly damaged they got as a result of what happened. All of the clothing is presented in a similar way on a white backdrop. Although, I mentioned I was not doing ‘things’ but rather views, I wanted to talk about the fact I could take away the idea of being consistent in the same style images of the same related object. Also, how this book is powerful and a reminder of what happened.
I found it interesting to view and hope that my work can be interesting to view as a collection, and also the fact you can pretty much do anything as a collection. Which gives freedom of choice as to what, therefore I could focus on waterfalls, or snow or buildings, or something different, depending what Iceland has to offer.
In conclusion, I can take aspects of her work away with me and have them in the back of my mind when photographing for this assignment.
If you are interested in viewing her work, you can watch the video here:
Edward Ruscha is the last artist I am going to talk about for Assignment 2. Along with Fay Godwin, is more of the main artist I have looked into since looking over his work to do with gas stations in the brief. He has a book which I have looked through called ‘Twentysix Gasoline Stations’ which shows what it is called. Various gas stations across America make an appearance in this book and all are taken from very similar angles, and same kind of exposure and nothing fancy. Just some gas stations. ‘Things’ ‘Views’ and ‘Heads’ a collection of any, all lead to the same style work, all using the same settings throughout the collection and all taken carefully, clearly showing a uniform of work that presents itself of the same style photographs, containing similar aspects in each photograph.
I may not be shooting gas stations, but what captures my eye is how each image compliments the next and sits together as a series, a collection. All gas stations may be slightly different buildings, locations etc, but it is all taken, focusing on the exact same thing in every photograph. This is what I need to keep in mind when producing my collection.
Over on my Assignment 2 page I have chosen to go into depth about two of his images, looking at various aspects of the images. To view this, head on over to Assignment 2 which can be found under the Assignments drop down.
Reykjavik Museum of Photography
Whilst away in Iceland on holiday, I was very busy but still had time to visit their museum of photography. This was located just down the road from me! So, me and my mum decided to take a look. There was not a lot of work on display, and was rather small, but the photographs were very powerful and beautiful. There was a whole range from landscapes of the beautiful land of Iceland to people in third world countries. It was very diverse.
Although I have been doing photography for 6-7 years, surprisingly this was my first visit to a photography museum. In the past I have been to exhibitions and other events but not a museum, dedicated to photography!
Although I enjoyed the photographs, it didn’t actually say who they were shot by, which I thought was odd. I could tell when I visited the gift shop next door that some of the images that appeared in the museum were in some of the books on display. I did contemplate buying a book, but Iceland being the most expensive country in Europe had the prices sky high. So, I made a note of some of the photographers I was interested in, just in case I ever wanted to use them for future work or reference. Most of the photographers were locals and it was really great to see the kind of talent they had and the beautiful and powerful pictures they produced.
I feel that the visit to the museum helped encourage me to take similar images to that of displayed in the museum.
Reykjavik Museum of Photography, Reykjavik, Iceland