Getting out slightly later than I hoped…

Dec 24, 2023

Getting out slightly later than I hoped…

Dec 24, 2023

Due to an extra step in the processing that required an extra trip to the darkroom, these will likely be arriving late into the holiday season. Below are a few views of this year’s edition of 15 holiday greetings heading out to a few friends, colleagues, and contacts made over the years.

The 6th edition of these 9×12” ‘cards’, continue with my circular universal face intervention, exploring photographic portraiture when we no longer know who is represented, which began with “The Children of Mars” series (2016-2019). A child in front of the Christmas tree is a part of the annual photographic ritual repeated around the globe. Many of us will be producing more tomorrow, myself included. But what do these images represent when they continue to exist beyond their original function as private mementos?

This image is printed from a negative acquired from France. Like most of the negatives I work with, it arrived wrapped in a folded piece of paper with no information. It has been completely detached of context, except for what is visible in the object and location it was sent from. Based on the format of the negative and attire within the image, I believe it dates from the mid 1930s through to 1950.

My treatment of the image is a combination of additive and subtractive photographic processes, sometimes stopping half way. No paint, ink, or digital manipulation is involved. For myself, the processing visualises photographic obfuscation ever present in the medium, which becomes pronounced when loose connection with context. The longer I work with the medium (over 4 decades now), the more I see photographic “objectivity” as naive myth. Yes, photographs are always of Something, but what we see in a photograph is merely a proposition of Something at some time. It is up to us as a viewer to decide what that Something is. It is this ambiguous bungee cord connection with “reality” that makes photography a fascinating puzzle that keeps me continually engaged.

A very happy and healthy Christmas to all those who celebrate.