Featured: 'pour' by pdh


Sunny Frimley
Real Name
Bill Palmer
I often feel that a photograph (or any work of art really) is like Schrodinger's cat. One can't pick it apart and try and understand it without losing something in the process.

Exactly. Understanding diminishes enjoyment when insight does not deliver enlightenment.

I used to work for a company with a unique and strong culture. It was recognised internally and externally as a virtue, and instrumental inthat company's success and vigorous growth. There was an attempt to analyse and codify it; understand to better replicate, and perpetuate. I along with many others argued that documentation was equivalent to ossification. We prevailed. It was realised that the most effective means of perpetuating the culture was simply to continue to recruit like-minded people.

As a postscript, the company stumbled a couple of years later, when it acquired another almost the same size with a different and contradictory culture. It fatally diluted that which made it special. 18 months later, weakened, it was itself acquired.


Just a bit more on the issue of aesthetics and understanding.

I do want to say that I think and feel that discussions about interpretation, meaning and technique are valuable. Mine is not a an anti-critical or anti-intellectual stance at all, and I've learned a great deal from reading academically orientated literature about art.

What I've said in my posts above is to explain why I don't provide much information about my photographs, and why I generally refuse any request to discuss what a particular image or set of images "means".

At the same time, it is my personal preference to approach seeing a work that is new to me with as little contextual baggage as possible to colour how I respond to it.

But that isn't to say I'm outlining a manifesto for how photographers should and should not present their photographs, or how any viewer or audience for a piece of art should approach it - I'm not.

I do, however, think it is worth anyone thinking about how they choose to present their work and what they choose to say (or not say) about it.

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