An archive of inspiration.
A blog of reference material for image enthusiasts. Dedicated to books that feature visionary photographers, filmmakers, historians, early cinema pioneers, artists of the Bauhaus and the avant-garde, dancers & choreographers, medieval illustrators, spiritualists, and science and technology lovers... as well as a few of my own photographic ramblings, mostly experiments with 35mm film and digital microscopy.
Soap bubbles under a microscope, showcasing the light spectrum.
Experimentation with water, oil and vibrations.
Artificial Darkness: An Obscure History of Modern Art and Media
AUTHOR: Noam M. Alcott PUBLISHER University Of Chicago Press (May 30 2016) PAGES: 312 pages
Darkness has a history and a uniquely modern form. Distinct from night, shadows, and artificial light, “artificial darkness” has been overlooked—until now. In fact, controlled darkness was essential to the rise of photography and cinema, science and spectacle, and a century of advanced art and film. Artificial Darkness is the first book to historicize and theorize this phenomenon and map its applications across a range of media and art forms. In exploring how artificial darkness shaped modern art, film, and media, Noam M. Elcott addresses seminal and obscure works alongside their sites of production—such as photography darkrooms, film studios, and laboratories—and their sites of reception, including theaters, cinemas, and exhibitions. He argues that artists, scientists, and entertainers like Étienne-Jules Marey, Richard Wagner, Georges Méliès, and Oskar Schlemmer revolutionized not only images but also everything surrounding them: the screen, the darkness, and the experience of bodies and space. At the heart of the book is “the black screen,” a technology of darkness that spawned today’s blue and green screens and has undergirded numerous advanced art and film practices to this day.Turning familiar art and film narratives on their heads, Artificial Darkness is a revolutionary treatment of an elusive, yet fundamental, aspect of art and media history.
SUBJECTS: darkness, light, photography, early cinema, Étienne-Jules Marey, Richard Wagner, Georges Méliès, Oskar Schlemmer
A night out at the roller rink in Portland, Oregon.
The mushroom museum in Saumer, France.
Trent Parke - Minutes to Midnight
AUTHOR: Trent Parke PUBLISHER: Steidl YEAR: April 30 2013 PAGES: 96
In 2003 Trent Parke began a road-trip around his native Australia, a monumental journey that was to last two years and cover a distance of over 90,000 km. Minutes to Midnight is the ambitious photographic record of that adventure, in which Parke presents a proud but uneasy nation struggling to craft its identity from different cultures and traditions. Minutes to Midnight merges traditional documentary techniques and imagination to create a dark visual narrative portraying Australia with a mix of nostalgia, romanticism and brooding realism. This is not a record of the physical landscape but of an emotional one. It is a story of human anxiety and intensity, which although told from Australia, represents a universal human condition in the world today.
SUBJECTS: Australia, human condition, 35mm black and white
Textures on the ground.
Memories of Hong Kong.