Project info

We are at a crucial moment in the history of images. The proliferation of cameras and digital point-and-shoot devices, the incorporation of picture taking into cell phones, the Internet, social networks, new surveillance technologies, the development of virtual reality devices—all this and more is configuring a second digital revolution in which the identity of photography must be rethought. Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google, Flickr, YouTube, Wikipedia, eBay and Blurb have become tools for experimentation and new creative processes. Today, how can we define photographic quality? Is it possible to identify the photographic canon arising from these new vernacular spaces of the image?

For Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal 2015, I propose a glimpse into the future of the post-photographic condition based on the following scenario:

The emergence of homo photographicus. We all take pictures. There are photographs of everything. The line between image and event is blurred. Towards an ontology of digital photography.
Challenging the document.
Oversaturation of images. The Internet is being converted into both an archive and a universal fertilizer. Massification is imposing a visual ecology that legitimizes new appropriation and anti-artistic practices.
Challenging the art.
The immediate and absolute availability of images: towards an aesthetic of access. Search engines as creative tools. The value of circulation of images versus the value of content of images.
Challenging the canon.
The artist as prescriber. Assignment of meaning to the image prevails over production of the image. Collapse of the traditional roles of artist, curator, collector, teacher, critic… Crisis in the spaces where the image “lives”: museums, exhibitions, books, Web pages.
Challenging the condition of the author.

Joan Fontcuberta
Guest Curator
Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal 2015