Photographic Works > Mis-Taken

MFA thesis show at the former Silver Image Gallery in Hopkins Hall at the Ohio State University in 2002. The exhibition was comprised of a Super 8 movie projected at the front of the gallery along with two parallel rows of flags of self-portraits for a total of 14 images. The images were originally made with a 1996 Fisher Price Fun Photomaker, an early digital camera that printed out to thermal receipt paper. The images were enlarged digitally and printed on Tyvek banner paper.

Please read the artist statement below.

Mis-Taken Self-Portraits

The images seen before you are mistakes. They don’t look like me. In fact, they look very much like someone else you have seen before, someone you know. Perhaps you recognize a face from a history book, maybe an album cover or a televised sporting event. They are all me and yet at the same time they are also someone form your memory.

The camera sees what the eye can not. Faulty lens, slow shutter, and digital artifacts distort cheeks, place eyes too close together and erase familiar features. The camera compresses and expands the distances between the points of interest on this facial map.

The eye sees what the camera does not. It picks up a specific detail one moment and next resolves another feature separate from the first. The mind pieces together many of these into one image, the recognized face.

When the mind’s eye and the camera eye agree, a good portrait results. When the two eyes are in disagreement a bad or mis-taken portrait is the result.

Inside the Silver Image Gallery is an installation with three layers. The first layer is concerned with the political significance that we assign large images presented as banners. The second layer is the act of curating history from limited information; this is presented as a science fiction. The final layer is the fact that all of these images, including the film, are self-portraits. They are a fiction, they are a comedy and a tragedy, and they are a history.