Martin Venezky and Barbara Levine
We Have Been Where You Are Going is a collaboration between Project B (Barbara Levine & Paige Ramey) and Martin Venezky, a response to the archive. I’m already aware of some of Levine’s work and follow her on Instagram. She is both an archivist who collates and preserves in addition to being an artist who uses vernacular images in her work.
Thank you to fellow student Emma for directing me to their fabulous collaborative work.
Whilst both Levine and Venezky collect vernacular imagery, Venezky is draw to the not particularly interesting photographs ‘the lack of aesthetics reminds me how quickly the images we cherish can empty themselves of value’ (Venezky. s.d). While Levine visualises ‘how pictures of apparent limited beauty value often overflow with tension and beauty’ (Venezky. s.d). Their Horizon series was a Lensculture award winner in 2017, it reiterates the poignancy and ambiguity of abandoned (once precious) photographs. The combination of title and imagery encapsulate ‘the blurriness between past and present’ (Venezky. s.d) reminding us that others have preceded our footsteps, had the same desires we have now.
Differing sizes of bold strips of colour are juxtaposed with varying size segments of old imagery. The collages are both visually appealing and enigmatic. New narratives are formulated, they contradict the linearity of time.
My work in progress
I have been working on some more of my own digital montages using up to 3 images to create blocks of colour (see below). They are combinations of both found and personal archival photographs most in conjunction with contemporary imagery. I’ve re-worked a couple altering the colours. I’ve created a new version of Grandma Tate and also used some of the long exposures taken in Cornwall to combine with photographs from my personal archive.
Despite wanting to continue with my scanography experiments a seaside theme seems to gathering momentum. Although I already have quite a collection of personal archival images I’ve ordered some more beach themed photographs from eBay. I will continue creating my montages and might try adding more segments after I’ve submitted my 2nd BoW assignment which is due by the end of the month.
References / Bibliography
Venezky, M. (s.d) Horizon