Tuesday, April 15, 2008

altered images

top: Burnout(sky), 2008, altered photocollage, 12" x 12"
bottom: ...and the sound goes BOOM!, 2008, altered photocollage, 10" x 23"

top: Infinite Boundary(detail), 2008, altered photocollage, 20" x 20"
bottom: Night Static, 2008, altered photocollage, 12" x 12"

A new, ongoing series of 'altered photos' I've been working on. I first mentioned them back here.

While working on these, I've had time to think about what personal photographs can mean for us in regards to how we self-identify; how parts of our identities and memories are reinforced by images of where we've been, what we looked like x years ago, who was in our lives, etc...

I've been literally erasing some photos (see above detail of Infinite Boundaries) and severely distorting others, like Night Static, also above. What has occurred to me through this process has been the physical and partial 'erasing' of a memory. The two photos that comprise Night Static are copies of one image that was taken in 2005 from the fire escape that sits outside of my studio window. It was a Saturday night and I was facing north, looking up 3rd Street. I was also trying to get a handle on taking night time photos with my old film camera. The shots wound up being very blurry and unusable to me at the time as photographs, so I stashed them away.

I only remember that because of having found the photos. If I hadn't, the memory of that particular instant on that particular night would have most been filed away into the deep recesses of my mind, most likely not to be found again. It wasn't an event that commanded a lot of attention or memory space, so to speak. So, if I had totally obliterated the image, would that even have even occured for me after a whlie? If I hadn't found the photo, would I even be thinking about it now? Probably not.

Now, with my personal history attached to it and my 'interventions' on them, the shots have begun to take on another life and history altogether in my mind. Who knows what kind of meanings and interpretations Night Static might have for other people viewing them.


nicole said...

Those are lovely!

Tim McFarlane said...

Thank you!