Monday, May 30, 2011

Inside a camera

It appears that Abelardo Morell does not have the right to the exclusive use of camerae obscurae in photography anymore, as after the recent discovery of Asier Gogortza's military bunkers (also here), I just found out that Peruvian artist Pablo Hare made some beautiful photographs of the landscape of Lima, projected on the walls of empty rooms.

"Everything has been done before, the trick is in doing it better."

I like the idea of artists sharing a technique that leads to such dangerously similar results, also considering the recurrent thoughts about plagiarism in photography. Should somebody give up because there has been already another one who darkened a room and let the light come in through a tiny hole to project the outside world on the walls inside? Should deadpan portraiture be limited to a small number of photograhers? And what about tall buildings in fast-rising Asian cities?

The camera obscura fascinates me because it always brings us back to the magic of the creation of an image, it is the closest thing to watching the latent image appear on a sheet of paper bathing in a darkroom tray. Rather than deciding if more than one person is entitled to make art with it, I would go the opposite way, recreating the whole history of photography through it, projecting all kinds of images on those walls: places, people, abstractions. Since digital photography (I know, I repeat myself) made us lose a bit of the feeling of the physical presence of an image, then showing the inside of a camera could be a good antidote - the closest thing to actually watching photography happen.

All images © Pablo Hare

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

ciao fabio!