water & architecture : City Proposals


On Photography

I used to take photos to capture memories, to show what was going on, to document events or my life.
I used to work in darkrooms for hours and days trying to make perfect prints. Somehow this way of photography doesn't interest me anymore.
I feel that because photography is a 20th century art form, it should be powerful and innovative, and not following the existing rules of lets say 'renaissance art', frame, composition, perspective.
For me photography is so close to reality: if I take a picture it shows what's there without any special effort.
I want to use photography in a different way.
I want to show what I think, feel and wish even though it is invisible,
I want to show the ideas in my mind.
I want to play around with reality, building new realities with my camera, using simple techniques.
It is important to loose respect for the conventions of the medium, because photography makes it possible to produce many cheap pictures and prints.
For me it is interesting to show a vision or an idea, but not to show skill or precise handwork.
The images/realities I work with are manipulated in a way that does not conceal the physical processes involved within their construction.
The pictures are made of different or parallel realities.
The way they are presented on the wall amplifies the relationships that exist within a picture and also between one picture and its neighbors.
It also reminds the viewer of the permanent existence of multiple realities and their perception.
There are overlapping structures within a single picture and the installation as a whole.
It is necessary to say something about our life and the environment we live in, to develop visions about how we want to live.
I observe the world around me and in a way criticize it through my work. I am living in a city and somehow I like it, on the other hand I am surrounded by tall buildings, I have to walk on the ground, the bottom street level, I am stuck in traffic, trapped between walls and living in rooms like stacked boxes.
But I have a soft body and a soul: I want to move differently, through a space without limits. Swimming in water is somehow like this, there is no up and down, you become free from the gravity that controls your actions within concrete urban space. So for me swimming is a symbol of self determinism.
I want to explore through the questions I have, but not necessarily working towards a specific resolution or answer. I like to show my work in a way that gives the viewer hints that provoke thoughts or questions.
The viewer becomes an active participant allowing him to come to his own conclusions, as opposed to passive consumption.
I guess an artist should not follow the conventional capitalist way of presenting and selling goods.
A finished picture is a product to sell.
A hint or a question is more difficult to consume, however it opens the mind.
Susa Templin, 1997