JOHN DI STEFANO
Three unique photograms – silver gelatin prints. 330 X 150 cm (110 X 150 cm each)
UMBRA consists of unique, large-scale photograms in which various grid pattern matrices are printed onto photosensitive paper. The fusion of these matrices creates misalignments, or moirées –a common unwanted residue of digital and print imagery, when pixelation or banding misregisters. The moiré phenomenon embodies the schism between what is described and what is ultimately experienced. This translation—a type of random ‘aliasing’—implies deception or even corruption, something that stands in apparent contraction to the veracity of the photographic image, and consequently suggests that there is more to an image when it ‘fails’ to align regularly. The notion of interference and failure are key considerations in this work, which attempts to also engage with the materiality of indexical media. This work examines this space of collision between what one is meant to see and what emerges from an image when one identifies the image’s fissures. The enigmatic visual spaces that emerge in this process—exemplified in the moirés—speaks to the plasticity of perception, but also models the dynamism of the physical world. This work attempt to identify the border between abstraction and concrete, realistic representation; the optical illusion between high-resolution, documentary photography and ‘painterly’ aesthetics.
The LUX PROJECT is a series of ‘cameraless photographic’ explorations that challenge the veracity of the photographic image. Relying on the indexical characteristics of photographic analogue processes, these works attempts to create images that remain faithful to the indexical and ‘documentary’ qualities of the photographic, and simultaneously create images that verge on abstraction. These works seek to engage the relationship between the materiality of analogue photography and perceptions of light as an expression of time.