A personal history of photography

Collector's Room Update #3

Photography is malicious and dark

Following two historical Collector’s Room Updates (pictorialism and modernism) the third Update is a unique perspective on photography and its history with images exploring the boundaries of conventional photography.
Photography as a medium explodes and loses its traditional connotations.
Historically accurate but not educational.



A thematic group exhibition with original photographs by: E.E. Barnard (USA), Nikolaï Kossikoff (BE/RU), Isaac Roberts (UK), NASA (USA), Roscosmos (RU), Alan A. Dutton (USA), Anthony Beresford-Cooke (UK), Puiseux & Loewy (FR), Marcel Mariën (BE), Bruno Vermeersch (BE), Germaine Krull (DE), Mount Wilson Observatory (USA), anonymous Chinese and Russian photographers.

“Collector’s Room Update #3: A personal history of Photography” is a playful and fresh exhibition about the dark side of photography.  Nothing is what it seems and yet everything is real. The photograph creates the story?  Or the spectator thinks to have a story?  But is his story the same as the photograph’s story?  Or is it his own story?  No, it is the hidden story projected by the photograph.

Photography isn’t always straightforward.  A picture can be really stubborn, not immediately revealing its story.  But a picture does always have a story.  Even though this story was not the photographer’s intention.  Photography is very patient.  Much more patient than the photographer, the subject or the spectator.  Don’t consider a picture as something transparent and straightforward.  It can be capricious and sometimes even manipulative.

The exhibition is based on the speech by François Arago in 1839 in the French Senate and the L’Académie des Sciences announcing and predicting the future of photography.  

It is definitely not veracious.  Although we would love to think so.

© Xavier Debeerst, November 2012

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