A Study for Portraits: Elements and Moments (2010)
Reportedly, painting has been exploring abstract ways of looking at the world after the invention of photography. Especially concerned with portraits, Cubism and Francis Bacon had huge influence on how the 3-dimensional space (and a face as a space) can be transformed into 2-dimensional picture. In the meantime, I think, photography has been mainly concentrating on representing the sitter accurately, even though there have been some experiments by multi-exposure or extremely long-exposure or even post-production with digital manipulation.
It is partly because photography is always invovled with who is the sitter him/herself, rather than how he/she is depicted on the 2-dimensional surface. In other words, since the viewer always conceives of the person depicted and even feels close to him or her (or them), an extremely manipulated depiction of someone is regarded as an indignation about the sitter and is likely to be disapproved.
This series of photographs are inspired by Marcel Duchamp’s famous painting, Nude Descending a Stairecase, No.2 (1912), and Francis Bacon’s outstanding works. In fact, Duchamp’s picture was obviously influenced by Edward Muybridge’s series of a galloping horse and other similar works. I think he combined each moment of the model’s movement, which is equivalent with each frame of Muybridge’s photographs of the horse, into a single plane of canvas.
We can easily make this kind of pictures with digital technology today, but I didn’t want to make my image by combining with the different parts from various photographs. I want to draw my picture on a single plane, like a canvas. Therefore, I released the shutter for 30 seconds or 1 minutes and captured my face and body in different positions with flashgun in vitually total darkness (sometimes with a mask which has a triangular shape). Each moment of flickering flashlight become each element of the picture. Elements and moments.