I have recently been very interested in photography as contemporary art, having chosen the topic in my research essay for my art history subject. Prior to this, admittedly, I had never paid too much attention to the medium. Apart from Cindy Sherman, photography had never really ’tickled my fancy’, possibly because I hadn’t been exposed to it very much, having always had the preference for painting, video, sculpture and spatial practice. For example, I live around the corner from the CCP and never had the urge to go visit it until now.
I am glad that I did, and together with all the research I am doing for my essay I am quickly starting to see the power and importance of photography in contemporary art (Michael Fried’s book Why Photography Matters as Art as Never Before is an excellent read and introduction to the medium in contemporary art). But I digress.
The main exhibition on at CCP at the moment is Proof of Concept, a series of photographs by Robin Fox. Robin is an audio-visual performance artist who explores the visual equivalence of audio electrical signals. In this series of photographs, he converts sound algorithms into visual electricity using oscilloscopes and laser projectors, of which he will then capture with his camera using long exposures.
The result is stunning large format photographs that remind me of mathematical shapes, geometry and curves. Knowing that these beautiful patterns are created from sound just goes to show what an amazing universe we live in, and the inherent beauty of physics and science. The mathematics and laws of physics that govern our universe truly are works of art.
Works like these really make me excited about the possibility of creating incredibly interesting and beautiful images from things that already exist around us. And I suppose that is the role of an artist – to discover, take from and draw our attention to the intricacies and nuances of the world we live in that we often take for granted or are overlooked.
Robin’s works really transcend the realm of photography. He is drawing with sound. The exhibition ends this week so be sure to check it out!