Francesca Woodman


House (1976)

Francesca Woodman was born in Colorado in 1958, Woodman lived and worked in New York and Italy, following her death at twenty-two, her work was exhibited extensively, her work depicts eighteen rare vintage black and white photographs, a collection once owned by Woodman’s boyfriend. This collection has hundreds of photographs, emphasised and exploited by the minuscule 6×6 CMs medium format. Woodman had a, maverick, unique style and variety of innovative techniques. In some photographs, Woodman merges with the contours through her vigorous manoeuvre theatrics. Woodman’s syntax often creates a depiction difficult to distinguish but creates a despotic feeling between the extremities of figure, self, substructure and world. From the onset, her body was both the subject and object in her work.

Woodman’s photographs demonstrate many influences, that use forms of hybridity and remediates some of them: from symbolism to surrealism that become a product of fashion photography to a radical documentary and maybe even a Baroque painting. In combining both performances, Woodman uses play and self-exposure. Woodman’s thematic placement permeates her photographs which segregate individual body parts immersed with carefully manipulated props, sometimes submerged in vintage clothing, Woodman typically corresponds with sited dilapidated, empty rooms or utilizes sparse antique furniture, dispositional by textured surfaces, traumatised mirrors; this creates disturbing psychological and claustrophobic ambiences.

Woodman uses dynamism through obscuring her subjects, she promptly displays that photographs distort, never conveying unabridged truth about a subject. Woodman’s photographs have a timeless superiority that is ethereal and Woodman is a promoter of avant-garde. Woodman’s photographs are unconventional because they explore issues of gender as she explores the boundaries of the bodily experience and it encapsulates self-displacement. She distorts her physical features making them congruous and this makes representation of the body as a form of constitute of the surroundings. This underlying isolated, ghostly presence alters her material identity and conveys her vulnerability. The rival of intemperate presence and absence of debate thus values the evanescence of her work.

Woodman influences my choice I feel that I should find a similar location Woodman exhaustingly tracked down for photographs, as it will hold the same stark connotations. I would like to recreate heavily poignant photographs achieved with long exposures. This will highlight profoundly metaphoric stories of self, much like Woodman. The idea of segregating individual body parts is something that inspires me to create a similar theme such as obscuring myself into the contours of the photograph, not exposing my physical self but my mental self to the viewer. The depiction of Woodman as unconventional I find incredibly strange because I find it astonishing that there is so much beauty in such melancholic photographs yet it is actually quite similar to Pre-Raphaelite era. I would like to replicate the beauty within melancholy that I sometimes feel. I feel deeply inspired by the uniqueness of Woodman’s creativity. I would also like to embark on avant-garde style by using hybridity and remediation within my work.

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