BY Advocate.com Editors

January 16 2010 2:00 AM ET

1 PIXEL GIF | ADVOCATE.COM

 STATE OF THE UNION 02 XSLIDE (ALIX SMITH) | ADVOCATE.COM

What makes a good photograph to you?
For me, art has to have
two things to really blow me away, a strong concept and drama. Be it a
landscape or a portrait, drama is what turns me on. For me, the world is
a stage and we are all playing the character we have chosen to play on
that stage. It is the job of the photographer to capture the drama of
the performance.

Who are your favorite artists? And why?
Jeff
Wall has made a big impact on how I create my images. In studying his
work I discovered how every detail in the image was considered, and
crucial to the communication of his concept. I began to think about how
one could use space and objects in order to enhance the viewers’
understanding of a subject. I find his unique visual language
inspiring. He draws from art history, sociology, psychology, historical
memory, media, and contemporary society in order to generate meaning,
making his images both conceptually complex and aesthetically appealing.





I
also love Tina Barney’s work. She creates scenes with her subjects that
reproduce actual events, and this theatrical role-playing creates images
that dramatize ordinary experiences. Her use of gestures and enigmatic
details within the frame creates a heightened sense of the moment. She
utilizes certain angles and visual devices, such as the manipulation of
objects within the space, in order to create a sense of depth.

Cindy
Sherman’s exploration of the concept of identity is brilliant. In her
"Untitled Film Stills" series, she mimics the depiction of women in the
postwar films of the 1960s in order to comment on how identity is a
product of cultural manipulation. Playing with framing, lighting,
camera angle, depth of field, and size, Sherman uses the specificity of
the medium in order to create meaning.
 
And of course Annie
Leibovitz. I love the way she emphasizes her subjects' public persona in
her portraits, using her own subjective interpretation of the person.
It’s her imaginative portrayal of her subjects and the backgrounds that
made her portraits so successful.





Tags: Art

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