Internet is shaping ways we discover and have access to an image. With an ocean of content available for disposal, its volume submits or expands to image type which then is navigated as per patterns found. Generation of the image is now sourced from varied systems of production, construction practices and circulation networks. More often as it presents, the image gets read first and then its associated text. As an instrument capturing ideas or in essence, clarifying it, an image, by and large, acts as a portal between states of thinking. For within a world of images, of roughly around 150 years what becomes/ can be defined as a contemporary image? Understanding an image is to look at processes to have created it and not as isolated products.
Two variables need consideration at this stage firstly the image as an object recognised and second the value of this image of today? An example of a contemporary image is reading of an authentic newsreel image which has transitioned the sharpness of the photojournalist to a blurry picture produced by the stray observer or participant. A sheer volume of material produced, the way we see or made to observe an image has shifted from flat to that which is multi-faceted, dimensioned requiring frameworks of navigation and prescriptions for use. This also means there is a generational distinction on how images are discovered. Does that change the way we see an image?
Set above inquiries on the nature of a group of ‘liked pictures’ gathered over a period of a day. Sourced from an obligatory movie piracy exercise to conversations about design projects on WhatsApp and then exploring avenues in a study on local design exhibitions the objective directs a gathering of ideas captured purely as image references. A core point of contention is how to perceive space/ physical image/ world constructed by these images? Without text, is the narrative evident from the content presented? What are shifts to occur when content is added to a collection? Should the narrative change from the beginning or expanded upon?
Appreciation of images is staged via agendas of an exhibition. With image sets, it's considered imperative to direct readings though the argument presented. Could a set operate on its own within a mechanism to collect myriad readings of those willing to engage with it? Or should its remain satisfied as a silent group subscribing to mandates of the author? Is the singular image more important or reading the group as a moment of singularity more pertinent? The relevance of a collection as an arrangement could be measured with its contribution towards a conversation and being sustainable enough to facilitate/ accommodate further exercises from the stage set.
Is that enough to fulfil the agenda of images and locate a market for the probable idea? Collections as an idea in a field and staged as a representation of things, these definitely are opportunities in image-making just that it needs to be recognised as such. An extension to seeing in a collection is understanding its parts or its presented structure. Which are the loudest bits on display and how do the subtlest bits perform? Image ingestion is subject to cultures in which it is located in. Reactions are hence anticipated to factor in a context of dissemination as collections or otherwise.
- MoMA Forum on Contemporary Photography _ https:youtube.com/watch?v=khLMbuj91So