Photography After Photography.
Hyper modern photography as a modern art form. New advances in art and digital computer technology. An expression of modern photography and digital art. The collaboration of individual and computer in generating art. Transceding the boundaries between modern photography and fine art. Photography and computer based imagery. After photography comes photography, but it is altered by the after.Digital image production invites us to view the history of photography in the light of the here and now. Images are created anew in the surreal simultaneity of the non-simultaneous. Uses the computer as he uses photography. The digital imaging techniques have literally put on hold, turned off, eliminated the photographic model of representation. Photography is the image of our history. The digitisation of the photographic image offered great new possibilities for montage - for "extensions of the momentary", as Eisenstein called his montages - for manipulations such as have been known in the relatively short history of photography. The good photographer is the one who offers the de-fi-ni-ti-ve image. Perfect. In the 1930s Walter Benjamin lamented that photography was emancipating itself more and more from any "physiognomic, political, scientific interest" and was now aspiring to be "creative". The medium of photography for the artistic armoury of the avant garde(s)? When Alfred Stieglitz and Paul Strand undertook a survey into the importance of photography as an aesthetic medium three quarters of a century ago. Digital Art, pictorial montage may be compared to a puzzle: its individual parts are now being allocated to each 'player' to be formed as he or she wishes, whereby the target image too is affected by a technical process determinism. Photography after Photography sees the traditional light-image in a critical relationship with the new image potential which has been given to photography through the algorithm. The art world could only begin to come to terms with digital image processing with the advent of personal computers (one exception being Nancy Burson's early composite images). There is no doubt that digital image processing is as unlikely to replace traditional photography as the latter was able to replace painting, or film replace photography, or video replace the film etc. The digitisation of photography simply means its translation into a numerically coded - and therefore non-visual - legibility, a translation which it shares with the other media of sound, writing or film. It can now join these media in the digital pool. An appropriately equipped computer encodes writing, sound, photograph or film, irrespective of the medium, and burdens the user with the semantic differentiation of a basic algorithm. Multimedia designates not a wealth of different media but the media correspondences implicit in the computer.The artists Aziz and Cucher, both living in California, allow the people in their portraits to become submerged in sense-lessness. Keith Cottingham generates twins by creating in the computer a confluence of classical drawing techniques, a moulded mask and photographs. The handling of digital media technology is accompanied not only by an often astonishing euphoria, a technophilia, an intoxication on the part of the net surfers, but also and ultimately by a fear intensified to the point of paroxysm, the fear of not being able to find a way back to a place anymore, once that place has been abandoned, that is to say, the fear of not being able to be present in any place anymore at a distance from the here and now. And just as modern photography removes the moment from its time, gives it a "posthumous chock" (Benjamin), so too analogo-numerical photography frees that moment from its essential link with the temporal before and after.
Jochen Brennecke's HyperPhotography on HyperArt.com