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UAL Research Online


Newth, Martin (2008) Konstanz. [Art/Design Item]

Type of Research: Art/Design Item
Creators: Newth, Martin

This work was an investigation into new uses of historic photographic technologies in a site-specific response to a particular landscape, that of Lake Constance. The project culminated in the production of 6 large-scale, tiled photographic images, and was initiated through a commission for the 150th year commemoration of the opening of the Kunstverein Konstanz in South Germany.

The work explored new ways of using hands-on photographic technologies that allow the viewer access to the indexical process by which the photographs themselves were made. This involved using spectacle lenses to transform a small building, used as a lookout onto Lake Constance, into a camera obscura. Multiple sheets of colour c-type photographic paper were pinned up inside the structure to directly capture large colour negative images of the surrounding landscape. Subsequently, the processed photographic negatives were used to make contact prints in a darkroom environment, thus producing a corresponding positive.

The mixture of traditional photographic technology and contemporary materials traces the process by which the photographic images are made, from the creation of the camera obscura to the production of the positive prints. This involvement in the photographic material process is in contrast to a viewer’s normal relationship to photography, which usually involves ‘reading’ images from the surface of paper or screen. Likewise, the utilisation of an in-situ structure makes the ‘camera’ itself integral to the landscape it records. The images invoke an historic aesthetic, analogous to the appearance of old photographs, whilst also revealing their contemporary status through the nature of the media and the time-specific signifiers within the images. As such the work explores the materiality of photographic images past and present.

Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > Chelsea College of Arts
Date: 2008
Locations / Venues:
From Date
To Date
‘Menschen und Orte’ at The Kunstverein, Germany.
Axel Lapp Projects, Berlin.
Date Deposited: 24 Jan 2014 17:27
Last Modified: 24 Jan 2014 17:27
Item ID: 6413
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/6413

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