Woman in Department Store, 1968
Tuesday, 30 June 2009
Two images of the same scene, or rather Diptychs are Sonneman's primary focus in all aspects of her art. I came across an interesting article from the Village Voice published in 1978 by Ben Lifson:
' A situation described in the left panel changes in the right as time lapses between exposures. One can tell little slice-of-life stories with a technique like this...But Sonneman's style goes further. It can dramatize how our perceptions of things change when we take a second look at them from a slightly different point of view....
The black line between Sonneman's frames is thus like a semicolon in a sentence dividing an initial statement from an afterthought.... It makes no difference how much time has elapsed between the first shot of a couple lying on a beach and the second shot in which a horse and rider speed past them. Sonneman's fiction of the world's rapid change is accomplished.
Since we know that in each diptych the images were juxtaposed in real time- not in the darkroom at some later stage- we imagine the photographer when we look at the pictures. Sonneman thus creates a fiction of the photographer as well as the world.'
Monday, 29 June 2009
Sunday, 28 June 2009
Friday, 26 June 2009
Thursday, 25 June 2009
Wednesday, 24 June 2009
Tuesday, 23 June 2009
Girl sitting on her bed with her shirt off, 1968
All the books, all the exhibitions, and all the musings about her suicidal death lead me often to wonder whether her images would resonate such depth and sadness if we remained none the wiser?
In other words if we knew nothing of the history of her life and more importantly her sad end would the work still have this profound weight ?
I think you would have to say it would, it does.
Her vision and the body of work she created is so singular. To this day it still intrigues and emanates such an aura because of it's strength as an image.
So many theories and critics point out the fact that her work; these portraits she took are simply reflections of her, the dwarfs, the sword swallower- all her.
To an extent I agree, but having read a lot of her own writing I sense that her quest was to reveal and get to the inner core of all these people. Repeated shoots and frames, and as much time she possibly could get so as to capture the real nature of her subject in just one still image.