Object = Subject by Sarah J. Leslie
Make picture of kaleidoscope (From William H. Fox Talbot’s notes 18 Feb 1839)
Object = Subject explores the dis juncture of how photography is understood through the sum of its scientific parts, and it’s positioning as a representative medium. This exhibition aims push this theoretical discourse through exploring both the subject of the photographic gaze and the photograph as object unto itself.
Object = Subject is an exhibition of five large-scale black and white works, illustrative of Leslie’s ongoing enquiry into experimental photographic practice, firmly rooted in the counter-argument to the medium’s posture as a representative and mimetic tool.
The works are produced using a combination of lo-fi analogue photographic techniques and digital manipulation. Each image is subtly manipulated to reduce it to a chiaroscurist base of light and dark. The resultant images – though still recognizable as subjects situated within space – are now formally ambiguous. This ambiguity is not a common attribute of the photographic arts, and reduces the photograph to its physical (scientific) qualities of a light reactive material.
Each image is designed through scale and contrast to purposely overwhelm the viewer. The exhibition design is immersive and dominates the space, with the hope being to encourage audience discussion (as simple as: ‘what is it’ / ‘this reminds me of…’) and promote the questioning of how they position the mimetic function of photography.
(b.1981) Originally from Melbourne, Australia Sarah is a photomedia artist concentrating in alternate and antique process, ‘plastic’ photography, and image re-appropriation. Sarah is also a curator with a specialisation in film, animation, and the moving image.
Sarah also has a background in Art History and critical theory, with interests concerning aesthetic theory in relation to the role and function of ugliness in art, and representations of the Renaissance body.