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Image of reality : its relationship to photography

Ball, JMSB 2000 , 'Image of reality : its relationship to photography', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Since the inception of photographic print processes in
the eighteenth century, our relationship with
photography has been largely through the photographic
print. However the photographic print contains none of
the essence present at the moment of the image's
exposure. This is contained within the exposed light sensitive
negative film that produces the print. The film
is a physical record of the light that was present at the
time of the image's exposure. While it verifies the light
that once existed, it does not and cannot possess the
qualities of the image viewed through the viewfinder of
the camera.
This research project investigates the different means
and methods of producing minimal imagery that
possess the qualities of the image viewed through the
viewfinder of a camera. These are: the subject of the
image (the representation) that is created by the
subject itself (reality); the reliance upon the passage of
light to produce the image; and the transformation of
reality into an image. Due to their realization these
images are continually forming, so emphasis has been
placed on subject matter that facilitates extended
viewing periods. This investigation has resulted in an
exhibition of artworks, which produce such imagery
through a three-dimensional apparatus. I have termed
these artworks 'photographic-like' imagery as the
imagery is constructed to appear photographic and
references the photographic print, but is never derived
from photographic negative film. In effect the role of the
negative film is usurped by the three-dimensional
Throughout the research project certain artists have
been influential in the development of the topic.
Contemporary photographers Merry Alpern and Sophie
Calle view reality through the camera lens and document their voyeuristic obsessions; in their work I
see a desire to view reality through the viewfinder of a
camera. Light is the basis of many photographic
processes and is central to my work. I consider James
Turrell and Robert Irwin, who manipulate light, to be
photographic artists. As in their case, my artworks, rely
upon a three-dimensional apparatus. The work of Anish
Kapoor and Donald Judd also influenced my decisions.
The aim of this research project has been to produce
photographic-like imagery through a three-dimensional
apparatus: this imagery is a re-presentation of reality,
not a representation of reality. The significance of my
project is the three-dimensional manner in which the
research was undertaken, and the results,
photographic-like imagery. In conclusion, the impetus
for this project was the image forming within the

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Ball, JMSB
Keywords: photography, artistic, minimal imagery, reality, light
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2000 the author. The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s).

Additional Information:

Accompanying CD in pocket inside back cover of hard copy reproduces photographs found within the thesis.

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