So after posting my Cyanotypes on Tuesday - here are the Van Dykes from the same project. These are a different series of images than the Cyanotypes, simply because I had the other images in my head as being cyanotypes, and I didn't really want to do them again with a different chemical process. They were only meant to be cyanotypes. They were meant to be blue.
The images I have used for my Van Dykes were taken last summer when I lived in a tent in France. The theme we were given to use with this project was all about memories, fleeting moments - the usual stereotypical ideas associated with photography. So my idea for this section was to print photos from France, and print them as post cards. The final prints I submitted were not styled as postcards, but my whole submission of the project was in a series of envelops with postcards stuck to the outside of them.
The below images are the final prints I submitted
And these are some of the millions of test prints. I have more that I have scanned, and if any of them are worth posting I'll include them at the end of a future blog. The first image was printed onto mounting board (thank's Gemma!) and I love how it turned out, would definitely recommend. I also used a couple of pieces of coloured paper, and it was far too thin to handle all the water and chemicals.
And - here are some Cyanotypes! I know, this is my "Van Dyke" post, but I used the Van Dyke negs with some extra Cyanotype pages I had previously painted.
The text below I wrote back on November 10, and never used it. About a week before that I went to Berlin as part of a college trip. While it wasn't related to the college work we were currently undertaking, it was great to see so much work in such a short period of time. Hopefully what's below makes sense. I'm not reading it again (do tell me if it is gibberish though. Also, I'm not sure about writing the other parts).
I started writing this blog post a while ago, but there is so much I want to say that I have decided to divide it into three parts. So here is part one:
I have been told by many people what an amazing city Berlin is, yet even as I boarded the plane Tuesday 4th Nov, I wasn't entirely sure I believed them.
Berlin is a city full of colour - I'm assuming it was the season that gave it the feeling of muted colours and pastels, all matching the millions of orange and yellow and red leaves falling off the trees. I knew it was a city of colour as the first thing I felt necessary was to switch film.
While it has a huge party scene associated with it, and obviously history, I hadn't realized how recent that history was. How recent it felt. Two days after I left, there was a celebration/memorial marking 25yrs since the fall of the wall. Mark Curran, our lecturer based over there, was a fountain for statistics. Last year, 24million one night/weekend stays were booked in Berlin. 24million, to rival a native population of 4million.
It's hard to articulate the feeling I received from Berlin. As an outsider, I will admit to shamefully seeing Germans in that stereotype of being silent and efficient and everything working perfectly. Everything did work - even with half of their public transport on strike, I was never once stuck for a way to get somewhere.
However it was said at one point, how during the world cup in 2006, it took the longest time for white berliners to wave a german flag - simply because they were afraid of being perceived as wanting to invade Poland. When you walk around, you see how young a city it is in terms of buildings. With the fall of the wall, suddenly there was prime real estate in the centre of the city. When walking through Potsdamer Platz, you are really walking through privately owned land, as two months after the wall's fall, it was sold to foreign investors. Some of the buildings you walk past don't actually exist; they're made of scaffolding and plastic facades. The rapid regrowth of the city is causing concern for some people - the empty spaces work as a reminder, and many want to keep this places to mark what the city has gone through. And they are such a strong reminder of what has happened.
One of the exhibitions we attended was the Forgotten Pioneer Movement at District-Berlin.
"Curators: Ulrike Gerhardt and Susanne Husse in conversation with Agnė Bagdžiūnaitė, Ana Bogdanović, Ivana Hanaček, Snejana Krasteva, Ana Kutleša, Svetlana Kuyumdzhieva, Eglė Mikalajūnė, Maya Mikelsone, Anca Rujoiu, Vesna Vuković
We understand that our generation’s mission is to revise this strategically demonized past. Agnė Bagdžiūnaitė (Artist and Curator / ŽemAt, Lithuania)
The Forgotten Pioneer Movement (TFPM) is an interdisciplinary performance and exhibition project about the experiences of the last, transitional generation between socialism and post-socialism. As a fictional movement, TFPM addresses the impact and the societal perspectives of the "last pioneers": a generation whose childhood and youth is linked to the times of the Perestroika and the “pOst-Western”Europe of the 1990s.
As a modernist phenomenon and ex-symbol of childhood and adolescent identification, the figure of the pioneer lends itself to an investigation of the many inscriptions of educational institutions and publicly mobilized ideologies in the former "East" and "West". TFPM combines strategies and discourses from visual as well as performative arts and cultural theory in order to approach "the future behind us", observed by Edit András, as a pan-european experience beyond geopolitical classifications. 25 years after the fall of the Berlin wall, TFPM suggests new constellations between this remote future and insignia of the present."
I loved the ideology behind this fabricated movement - a fabricated movement that is becoming real through the growth of interest and artists associated? - and the talk/walk around the work that the curators gave us was a unexpected eyeopening to a different side of perception. I had never really looked at art from the side of a non-westernised country; or if I had, it was to "otherise" it. That is not to say that I hadn't looked at art outside of mainland Europe or the United States, but the art from these further afield areas that is shown here has a very "western" style to it, or the artist has moved with the work to somewhere more able to show it. It also made me question whether an artist should have to produce an english version of their text; it possibly makes their work more accessible to a wider audience, but if they have no connection or knowledge of english, is it them surrendering their work to possibly be received out of context?
Postcards from Europe 10/14
work from the ongoing archive
These postcards were the accompanying text for 11 images. All the images, while were shot and printed in a portrait format, were empty landscapes, each one of something that was linked to the people mentioned in the writings. The front of the postcards held the writing in german, also printed onto the card in a portrait format. The combination of the subdued images and the factual postcards gave the images am unexpected weight.