Friday, April 3, 2009


continuing this week's book theme, i wanted to note Jenny Mathias' new project Circulation, in which the contents of illustrated books are photographed as the pages flip in long exposure.  her project statement says: 
"The long exposure compresses image and text, selectively highlighting certain aspects of the information conveyed by the book while obsuring other information the same way that the human mind selectively remembers or forgets certain images or ideas.  Mathias' images reveal an internal existence of books which cannot be viewed in real time, but only expressed through photography's ability to compres time into one static image."

it's a cool idea, and i like the results.  i enjoy the way the images are identical in composition while different books offer different ideas or nod toward disparate genres.  the top image conjures up thoughts of spirit photography, whereas the bottom one makes me think of the use of collage in fashion design.

Jenny's show opens Monday, April 6th at the Pratt Institute Media Arts Gallery, 200 Willoughby Ave., Steuben Hall, in Brooklyn, NY.

p.s. i can personally attest to Jenny's longtime interest in libraries and oversized books.  i took this photo of her several years ago when we met in a class at Cooper Union:


sexy said...
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kara - all things ordinary said...

i like oversized or unusual sizes too

Rachel said...

Slightly similar to Doug Keyes's work.

subjectify said...

great comment Rachel -- thanks! i had never seen Keyes' project. here's his statement, if folks are interested:


As an artist and graphic designer, Doug Keyes is hyperaware of the ways in which information and images are conveyed to the public. He is equally aware of the way knowledge stacks upon itself over time, leaving an impression or collective memory. Keyes’ luminous color photographs of books reveal (or conceal) the entire contents in a single image. Produced with multiple exposures of all the pertinent pages of each book, the resulting images represent a condensed document of the ideas contained within as well as the physical identity of the book itself. "

jenny said...

i actually had never seen keye's work either somehow. i was familiar with katya mater's more conceptual, less image based work and a few of idris khan's composite scans of visual and textual material. thanks for the heads up on keyes!

Cathy Laine said...

nice! love 'em.... Good day!

Wendy said...

This is a clever idea. I love it!