Artist Talk – Lisa Gunn

Artist Talk – Lisa Gunn

Today we had Artist Lisa Gunn in to talk to us about her work as a photographer and within participatory arts which centres around her response to her own physicality, raising a lot of questions around representation and the body.

Lisa Gunn has devoted her art to the study of physical metamorphosis. Her work is defined by an in depth exploration of her incomplete physicality, and her body’s ability to change, evolve and adapt in the most extreme circumstances.

In 1997, at the age of 21, Gunn suffered a life changing physical and emotional experience. She was involved in a road traffic accident that would leave her with painful, debilitating spinal injuries, and change her physicality forever. She did not realise at the time, being so young and vulnerable, that it was not just her body that would suffer from the incident… her social and cultural identity would never be the same again.

Embodying the Other: Dance and Photography collaborate

Embodying the Other: Dance and Photography collaborate

Students and Staff from the BA Dance course in the School of Media and Performing Arts joined us today for a collaborative Masterclass:

Building on the Visualising the Other session for PICBOD, BA Photography and BA Dance teamed up to explore ideas of Embodying the Other. The interdisciplinary workshop was framed with a lecture that pushed forward foundational discussions about marginalisation of communities to consider how the ‘Other’ can be used as a source for types of critique, including questioning how mechanisms of representation operate socially and in arts practices in relation to the body.

In response to these discussions, the participants were given roles that required them to swap their normative roles, respond to each other and to the environment around them. The tasks and developed research can be seen on the G+ community.

 
Session 5: Visualising the Other

Session 5: Visualising the Other

In Visualising the Other we discussed the relationship between early photography and colonialism, knowledge and power. Photography as a tool for objectification and photography as a tool for Orientalism. We looked at early attempts to represent the ‘other’ and how contemporary practitioners have reclaimed their own identity.

Key words to think about:

The ‘Other’ - Objectification – Orientalism –– Colonialism – Post-colonialism – Reclaiming identity – Power & Ideology

Click on the image below for the session slides:

 

This week's task: A dialogue with a stranger

You are asked to record a dialogue with a stranger. This task needs to be practice based but can be any lens based media or an audio piece. It needs to represent and/or respond to the dialogue with the stranger.

Experimentation is encouraged. What medium are you going to use? Colour, Black and White? What format are you going to use? What presentation may support the portrait? Do you need to make more than one image? How did you negotiate the story with the participant?

 

List of relevant Photographers/Artists discussed:

Zanele Muholi (2016)

Paul Gaugin (1899) Two Tahitian Women

Edward Curtis (1903/4) The Vanishing Race

Irving Penn (1960s-1970s) Worlds in a Small Room

Al Jolson (Actor) (1886-1950)

Ingrid Pollard (1989) Seaside Series (1992) Wandsworth Heritage

Maud Sulter (1993) Sycras

Dave Lewis (1995) Responses to the Haddon Photographic Collection

Michael Cook (2009) Mother

Yinka Shonibare (2010-12) Nelson’s Bottle

Kara Walker (2014) A Marvellous Sugar Baby

Gideon Mendel (2017) Dzhangel

 

and some further reading:

(Ed) Behdad, A. & Gartan, L. (2013) Photography’s Orientalism. New essays on Colonial representation. Getty Foundation

(Ed) Edwards, E. (1992) Anthropology and Photography 1860-1920. Yale University Press.

(Ed) Hight, E. & Sampson, G. (2002) Colonialist Photography Imagining race and place. Routledge

Franz, F. (1951) Black skin, white masks. Editions de Seuil

Gilroy, P. (1991) There Ain’t No Black in the Union Jack: The cultural politics of race and nation. Chicago press.

Pinder, K. (2002) Race-ing Art History. Routledge

Pinney, C. (2011) Photography and Anthropology. Reaktion Books

(Ed) Pinney, C. & Peterson, N. (2003) Photographers Other histories. Duke University press.

Pollard, I. (2004) Post cards home. Autograph

Said, E. (1976) Orientalism. Readon Publishing

 Catalogues

Art and Empire (2015) Tate

In Visible light (1998) Museum of modern Art Oxford

The impossible science of being (1995) The photographers Gallery

Native Nations Journeys in American Photography (1998) Barbican

Viewing

Inventing the Indian Richard Hall (BBC iplayer)

 There is a follow up masterclass Embodying the Other between BA Photography and BA Dance, that look at the marginalised body through performance and image making.

Further references and resources are on the end of the powerpoint slide presentation and will continue to be disseminated through  @picbod and G+ community page.

   
Session 4: Framing Chiascuro

Session 4: Framing Chiascuro

In 'Framing Chiascuro' the  identified the origin of Chiascuro in Renaissance painting and its application by painters such as Caravaggio and re-appropriation throughout the ages. Stylistically bold and dramatic it was used heavily by painters commissioned by the Catholic Church, the harsh contrast fulfills the sense of drama, the threat of protestant church but also signified the darkness that we live in and the light of God. The lecture explores the re-appropriation of this style in photography but also broader references to painting and the use of light in photographs.

We discussed the use of light in a range of influence materials. Working in groups, students were will be challenged to consider the quantity, quality and direction of light, how it has been achieved and what meanings it has brought to the image.

Click on the image below for the lecture slides:

This Week's task:

This task is based on getting you to think more carefully about the body of work that you want to create for the module. Your task is to experiment and develop your initial ideas of your project with consideration of lighting.

You should demonstrate control of lighting with consideration of how it has impacted on the meaning of the picture. Has it brought, drama or mood to the image? Has the lighting been used to create the impression of objective truth or a subjective interpretation of the sitter? How has it been achieved? What influences have informed your approach?

List of relevant Photographers/Artists for research:

Leonardo Da Vinci, Caravaggio, Gregory Crewdson, Bill Henson, Maurice Scheltens, Juan Sanchez Cotan, David LaChappelle, Picasso, Damian Blottiere, Daniel Gordon, Lua Ribeira, Max Pinckers, Dan Winters, Jono Rotman, Stefan Ruiz, Piero della Francesca, Terry Richardson, Weegee, Annie Leibovitz, Nadav Kander, Piero Martinello, Richard Avedon, Nick Knight, Albert Watson, Vivian Sassen, Rob Hornstra

Session 3: Relationships and Intimacies

Session 3: Relationships and Intimacies

This week we explore Relationship and IntimaciesThe lecture examined snapshots and vernacular photography, the reasons we feel the need to gather images and how we behave and represent ourselves in these images.  We looked at the intentional use of snapshot aesthetics to signal the intimacy of the relationship between photographer and subject in the context of fashion and documentary, and the re-appropriation of found vernacular imagery. The ethics of the snapshot will be discussed, looking at the role of photographer as insider and outsider, with reference to Inside/Out by Abigail Solomon Godeau.

Check out the lecture slides below:

This week's task...'A Familial Portrait'

Your task is to create an image or series of images of someone you know well, either a family member, partner and close friend. The image needs to explore the space in the personal relationship. Consider how this could be visually illustrated? Experimentation is encouraged. What medium are you going to use? Colour? Black and White? What format are you going to use? Do you need to make more than one image? Whose image is it? How did you negotiate the story with the participant?
Task Deadline: Post on G+ collaborative open space by Wednesday 15th March  for class feedback

Relevant Artists and Photographers:

Nan Goldin, Larry Clark, Mike Brodie, Stacy Kranitz, Corinne Day, Wolfgang Tillmans, Ren Hang, Juergen Teller, Erik Kessels, Julian Germain, Penelope Umbrico, Lee Friedlander, Tony Rae Jones, Martin Parr, Richard Billingham, Zanele Muholi

Further references and resources are on the end of the powerpoint slide presentation and will continue to be disseminated through  @picbod and G+ community page.

Session 2: Identity and Self-portraiture

Session 2: Identity and Self-portraiture

This week in 'Identity and Self-portraiture' we discussed self-portraiture in the context of gender, politics, constructing identity, challenging stereotypes and as photo-therapy.

We looked at primary artists who have influenced contemporary thinking about self portraiture and some contemporary practitioners who build on these ideas. We discussed the intentionality of the work and discussed the appropriateness of self portraiture.

Key words to think about...

Performance – Embody – Self Portraiture – Selfie – Identity – Phototherapy – Stereotype – Role play

Click on the image below to see the lecture slides:

               

This week's task: A ‘Self Portrait’ Portrait...

Building on the class discussions your task is to make your own self portrait. This brief can be interpreted as broadly as you like. Consider what point you would like to make and how best to perform that role. Experimentation is encouraged. What medium are you going to use? Colour or Black and White? What format are you going to use? What presentation may support the portrait? Do you need to make more than one image? Whose image is it?  What are you trying to reveal in the image?

Task deadline: Post on G+ collaborative open space by Wednesday 8th March  for class feedback

 

List of relevant Photographers/Artists and Bodies of work discussed: 

Juno Calypso (2015) Honeymoon Suit

Claude Cahun (1912-1932) Self Portraits

Catherine Opie (1993/4) Self Portraits

Jo Spence (1979) Beyond the Family Album

Jo Spence (1981-82) Remodelling Photo History

Jo Spence (1982-1986) The Picture of Health

Frida Kahlo (1944) The Broken Column

Sam Taylor-Wood (2001) Self Portrait in a Single Breasted Suit with Hare

Elina Brotherus (2009-14) The Annunciation

Cindy Sherman (1977-80) Film Stills & (2008) Society Portraits #Untitled

Gillian Wearing (2003) Album

Hans Eijkelboom (1970’s) Family Portraits

Trish Morrissey (2001-04) Family Portraits

Nicki S Lee (1997-2001) Projects

Samuel Fosso (1970’s) Self Portraits

Shadi Ghadirian (2008-09) Self Portraits

Amalia Ulman: (2014) Excellences and perfections

Tracy Emin (1998) My Bed

Tim Soter (2001) Self-Portrait

Ben Eldin (2016) Self Portrait

Grayson Perry (2015) Who do we think we are?

 

For further reading...

Bright, S. (2010) Auto Focus. Thames & Hudson

Doy, G (2005) Picturing the self: Changing view of the subject in visual culture. I. B. Taurus

Hall, S. (1997) Representation: cultural representations and signifying practices. London Thousand Oaks, California: Sage in association with the Open University.

Miller, D. (2015) Photography in the Age of Snapchat. RAI

Olin, M. (2012) Touching Photographs. University of Chicago Press

Moorhouse, P. (2014) Cindy Sherman. Phadion Publishing

Smith, C. (2011) Enacting Others. Duke Press

Spence, J. (1986) Putting myself in the picture: A political personal and photographic autobiography. Camden Press.

(2010) Identity & Identification. Black Dog Publishing. London

(2016) Performing for the camera. Tate publishing

 

Further references and resources are on the end of the powerpoint slide presentation and will continue to be disseminated through  @picbod and G+ community page.

Session 1: Nude and Naked

Session 1: Nude and Naked

In Nude and Naked; Questioning Power and Challenging Representation we looked at moving from a historical consideration of the nude/naked binary in art and photography into a critical consideration of representation and power.

 

Key Themes and Ideas to think about:

Nude and naked

The role of the nude in art and culture

The male body and censorship

Power and representation

 

This week's task:

We have discussed nude and naked in the context of reclaiming

representation. We have looked at some classical photographers who

challenge notions of representation and contemporary photographers who

use the body to comment on the body as an object, representation and

commodification.

Working in pairs your task is to make an image of your partner, that reveals

something about them. This brief can be interpreted as broadly as you like. It

could be anything from a favourite food, idiosyncratic habit, what they like to

do in their spare time. The challenge is to navigate a successful way of

representing this in the image.

Experimentation is encouraged. What medium are you going to use? Colour,

Black and White? What format are you going to use? What presentation may

support the portrait? Do you need to make more than one image? Whose

image is it? How did you negotiate the story with the participant? What are

you trying to reveal in the image?

 

All tasks need to be added to the Google+ collaborative open space by

Wednesday March 1st. The seminar session will be online peer to peer

feedback.

 

You might want to look at:

Orlan

Hannah Wilke

John Coplans

Jenny Saville

PicBod 2017 is about to kick off!!

This year's PICBOD is about to start, with the opening sessions on Thursday 23rd February.  We are looking forward to an exciting lectures series, alongside masterclasses and guest speakers.  

Check out last year's gallery to get an idea of the work produced, and head on over to the community to introduce yourself and see the latest contributions from students and participants.    

Picbod 2016
elizabeth smith
G+ Community
#PICBOD is now in hibernation until next spring…

#PICBOD is now in hibernation until next spring…

We are signing off for another year! To celebrate all the work that has been produced the #PICBOD cohort class of 2016 took over Coventry University photo hub. The hub was transformed  and the audience were asked to participate in a number of interactive installations. The students responded to the tasks and developed highly personal bodies of work.  You can see more examples of the different bodies of work on the G+ community page - it would be great to hear your responses and thoughts!

Keep an eye on the twitter feed and we will let you know when we are up and running again early 2017.  You can also check out our other open courses Phonar - @CU_phonar and Community Culture and Identity - @ComCultureID

Images ©Niall O’Connor