Monday, November 10, 2014

The Eye In Its Wild State

Photogram, Cleveland, OH, 2014

Recently I viewed the Cleveland Museum of Art's Forbidden Games, their exhibition on modernist and surrealist photography.  They also have an interactive photogram display where you can create your own work and email it to yourself, which I did with the above image.  I find surrealist photography to be an exploration - an attempt - to understand how and why humanity is capable of such colossal inhumanity.  Think war, and how the public's view and understanding of war was forever altered with the advent of photography.  Mathew Brady's chronicling of the American Civil War, and then the horror in the trenches of World War I personalized the death and destruction.  It stripped away whatever 'noble cause' jingoism that someone might try to ascribe it.  Never have the dead spoken so loudly as when photographs of the corpses were published and the common person could see for themselves.  Reading about atrocities is one thing, seeing is believing.

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