Saturday, February 25, 2012

David Cotterrell - Monsters of the Id.

We went to David Cotterrell's exhibition at the John Hansard Gallery, on the Southampton Univerity site. We've been asked to wirte a 200 word review in the style of SOUCE Magazine. I read through some of there reviews before starting mine to get an idea of their review style, and the structure they've used.

David Cotterrell is an installation artist, who works with many different mediums, from photography, to audio, to interactive technology. The John Hansard Gallerey in Southampton held his exhibition ‘Monsters of the Id’. Cotterrell wanted to show art in a different way, a way that hasn’t been done often before, but through technology. ‘Monsters of the Id’ comes from the artists journeys to Afganistan.
The first piece of work is called ‘Observer Effect’, it’s a large curved wall with a projection shone on to it. As more people enter the exhibition space, more people appear in the projection. The area in which the people appear is representing Afghanistan. The next piece of work is called ‘Search Light 2’ In the middle of the room, a bumpy terrain like area is covered with little any like people, again this reacts to people viewing the exhibition, and as more people fill the space, move ants will appear, and move across the hilly terrain. The whole exhibition shows representations of war, but not what you expect when you think of war, but more so the way it makes people feel. 

Monday, February 20, 2012


I went back to Cornwall to see my older sister for her birthday, unlike Southampton you can see the stars in Cornwall, we have barely any light pollution. My dad had spotted both Mars and Venus in the sky over the past few days. So we went out at two am this morning with my tripod and things to see if I could get a photograph of it. My sister also has a telescope, the original plan was to set it up so my DSLR was looking through her telescope, to get a decent photo. Unfortunately she wasn't able to set it up properly, I think something was missing. 
My own - Mars, 2012
 I set my camera up on my tripod, with a standard lens, and used my remote so I didn't move the camera. It was tricky, as it was dark I needed to use a longer exposure, but then the planets and stars would leave a trail, I was surprised at how quickly you could see them move, considering. I managed to get a few photos, although it would have been better if I'd used the telescope. I'm just really happy with the fact I've got photos of Mars, even if they're not brilliant quality. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


Today in our seminar we spoke about semiotics, the study of signs and symbols. Semiotics consist of the Signifier, what it is you can see/hear, and the Signified, the thing you think of or about, the mental meaning that goes with the signifier. It's not always a specific sign or shape that will create these mental links, colour coding also triggers thoughts, where you see red and blue, you automatically think of red being hot and blue to be cold, just because that's the way your brain has learnt those things.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Charlotte Cotton Text.

For this weeks text we had a look at Charlotte Cotton's "The Photograph as Contemporary Art". We all had parts of chapter 2, 'Once upon a time'. This photographs all seemed to be slightly if not very staged, made up by the photographer and strongly connected to the narrative. Some images that particularly stood out to me were:
Wendy McMurdo, ‘Helen, Backstage, Merlin Theatre’, 1996
Wendy McMurdo - Helen Backstage, Merlin Theatre 1996
This is a photograph I've seen before, I think it's really clever, like meeting yourself for the first time, I never really do any editing but I think this works really well, I would like to try something similar to see what I could create.
Tom Hunter - The Way Home 2000
Tom Hunter's recreated old paintings through photography, this is a take on John Everett Millais' 'Ophelia'.
All the photographs in this chapter seems to be dream-like, maybe a bit twisted. You don't expect to see what you're seeing, almost like it's fantasy. They all tell stories. 


Friday, February 3, 2012

John Berger, Ways of Seeing.

We were given a pictorial chapter from 'Ways of Seeing' by John Berger, and a set of questions to keep in mind. At first I watched the four part BBC series by Berger, this was then transformed into the book. I felt this would help me understand the idea of the book a bit more. I found this on YouTube, We also had a seminar discussion on the text to share every ones opinions.

Gustave Courbet - Woman with White Stockings, 1861

Gustave Courbet - Young Woman by the Seine, 1856
This chapter of Berger's book is made entirely of pictures, with no text at all. I think that a lot of these pictures and paintings are strong enough by themselves, therefore don't need words to go with them. I feel like Berger many have left them text-less so that the text wouldn't take you away from the picture, or give you a different opinion on what you see for yourself. These paintings would have been originally hung on a wall, everything around it would have made up the picture and made it feel a different way if it was viewed somewhere else, this could of changed the meaning of the image. They would also been unique to one place, paintings lost something once cameras made them reproducible. 

William Blake - Europe Supported  by Africa and America, 1796

William Blake - Mildew Blighting  Ears of Corn

William Blake - Pity, 1795

The paintings in this chapter are from 1790-1890 most of them are portrait paintings of women. Showing feminism, the female form, and the roles of woman in the early 19th Century.

Images scanned in off hand out.

Thursday, February 2, 2012


I've used a blog before to present some of my own photography work, but I've only ever followed other peoples blogs for things like craft and cooking tutorials. Our tutor has given us some blogs to have a look at to give us some ideas. Here are my favourites:

1000 Words Photography is a contemporary photography on-line magazine, it's a good site for finding contemporary photographers, and exhibition info. 

Cup of Pea is a blog by photographer Rasmus Vasli, within this blog he photographs strangers, and writes a small paragraph about there meeting. I find this work really interesting, and love how his blogs just his own work.
Little Brown Mushroom's blog explores photobooks. They're always reveiwing new books and it's a really useful site to find new photography works and phototgraphers.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Welcome to my new blog.

I have set up this blog for our Visual Exploration project at uni. We've got to write an exhibition review and create a blog, both worth 50% of our grade. I'll use this blog to show my research and what I've found about reviews, also a week by week of what we've covered in our lectures/gallery visits.
 Please feel free to comment, your opinions are more than welcome. (: