With the series Documents, I present the audience with artefacts, documents of Photography, in a conceptual play to subvert the associated with it idea of seamlessly recording everything that stands out there in the world in front of the camera’s lens. I enter a performative act of slashing the surface of an unexposed 5x4˝ b/w negative. A cameraless image produced from scanning the processed negative becomes the witness of this violent act as it carries all the traces of my forceful gesture that disturbs the flatness of its seamless surface. The visual result is an abstract pictorial space, which seems to be ‘bleeding’ from the traces caused by the deformation act of slashing.
The work is concerned with issues regarding the utopian idea of ‘flatness’ of modernist painting and the ‘seamlessness’ of photography, which I challenge by engaging in the abstract expressionist act of slashing the medium’s surface. This psychologically charged gesture is a comment on myself as a photographic artist and my personal relationship to photography. It emerges as a radical expression of my need to break through the perfect, seamless, flat surface of the photograph and work against my personal values for perfection. This act of slashing resonates with Lucio Fontana’s 1960 Spatial Concept `Waiting'. But unlike Fontana’s elaborate act of cutting the raw canvas, here I have forcefully violated the surface of the negative in an attempt to beat its resistance. Blindly handling the negative in a dark bag, my only guide were the tactile sensations between my hands and the materiality of the negative.
Inkjet Archival print on pearl paper, box-framed, 36x45 cm