20150505 for SMM

Photography has changed how we see the world. No painter would depict a person this way! Only the camera gave us an opportunity to see what is around us in such an informal manner. And few, if any, traditionally trained photographers would have used the camera so. Such a journey of visual discovery is the domain of the snapshot.

This image breaks all the traditional rules of organization: the symmetry, the framing, the prominence of the nose. An emphasis on the imperfections of the skin is not what we expect of an image of a young woman. The zipper and the puckering of the cloth become more important visually than she is.

But, and this is an important point, this Polaroid photograph shows a fragment as we see it in close proximity when the details take over. The purpose of art has always been to make us attentive to aspects of our world we should otherwise miss.

Photo Courtesy of Kevin Johnson