Medium: Instant film transfer on paper, approximately 3.25 x 4.25"
Installed at the School of Image Arts, December 2013
Consisting of over three hundred unique photographs, Surfaces is a project that delves into the relationships between photography, portraiture and the ideology of the individual. Within western society, this ideology preaches that each person is distinct from the global population of seven billion, a paradoxical concept in its unprovability and its foundation within modern life. Surfaces is a reaction to this concept, and attempts to mediate the divide between the individual and the mass; the original and the copy; the unique and the mundane.
Presented as an installation of photographic portraits, the prints are sequenced in order to lead the viewer between intimate encounters with individuals or specific groupings and moments of being overwhelmed with repetition and mass. This idea is repeated in the way the prints are created. Forged by transferring instant film negatives onto paper from previously shot slides, the prints are hybrids between a mechanical reproduction and hand driven process. Thus, while images may be repeated through the printing process they are transformed into unique objects.
Beyond exploring the ideology of individualism, Surfaces is an exploration into portraiture. Despite photography’s relatively short history, it has often been used as a tool to categorize, classify and justify extreme actions against minorities and other groups of people. Instead of dividing humanity, Surfaces is all encompassing and accepting; there exists no criteria to be eligible or unable to participate. Rather it is voluntary experience, and exist within a dialogue between artist and subject. All subjects are informed of the nature of the project and provide their consent, all prior to their photograph being made.
Surfaces is an ongoing and continually expanding project. To date it has been installed once, in December 2013 in the first floor hallway of the School of Image Arts at Ryerson University. A special thank you to all those who participated.