W, March #14, 2000 by Philip-Lorca DiCorcia
The warp in the fabric of Art History that connects Walker Evans and Kenneth Anger links social consciousness and narcissism, formalism and formlessness, the private and public, the oblique and the blunt, the tried and the true, the here today and the gone tomorrow.
Cinnamon and sugary and softly spoken lies, You never know just how you look through other people’s eyes
– Butthole Surfers
By Philip-Lorca DiCorcia, Intro to the Yale Handbook, 2008
The warp in the fabric of Art History that connects Walker Evans and Kenneth Anger links social consciousness and narcissism, formalism and formlessness, the private and public, the oblique and the blunt, the tried and the true, the here today and the gone tomorrow. Photography, ‘the process of rendering observation self-conscious,’* unites the obvious and the unconscious at the level of the limimal – the border between what we see and what we suspect. For some it is the anarchic reality between the still surface of conventional life, for others the conventions belied by the anarchic surface of reality.
Who amongst AshleyDavidKatieLeighMichelePeteRebeccaRekaThomas could be immune from the suspicion that photography offers more of an explanation than reality itself. They went to New Haven and got on a ghost ship some went swimming, others got off on the beach peopled with boys pissing on a mirage which couldn’t be located with a GPS despite the use of tin foil encrusted miniature deathbed attended by two black dogs. A hair-raising joy ride in a medium that, despite being a mechanical trick, can break down the division between mind and matter like a superhero, or an artist. Now the fun begins. Their aim at Yale has been full To the Brim. They are over it.
*John Berger, The Look of Things
Philip-Lorca diCorcia (born 1951) is an American photographer. He studied at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Afterwards diCorcia attended Yale University where he received a Master of Fine Arts in Photography in 1979. He now lives and works in New York, and teaches at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.
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