Staking Claim: A California Invitational

Staking Claim: A California Invitational

Visiting the Staking Claim: A California Invitational exhibit was interesting because there were many different types of work by several different types of artists. However, one in particular that really stood out to me was Matthew Brandt’s work. His work was fascinating because he would use his photographs of the lakes and reservoirs that he visited and dip them into their respective lakes or reservoirs before developing the pictures. After he develops the pictures, he would lay them out to dry for a few months to shows the effects of the water on the photographs. The level of deterioration was determined by both the water and time.
I believe his work sends a powerful message pertaining to the toxicity of the water over time and its affect on the environment. Although the bodies of water seem harmless and tranquil, end result of the photographs affected by the water signifies that over time, the water can be damaging. Luckily, it was only photography paper, but if it were our bodies, the damage would be catastrophic.
According to my research, Matthew Brandt is known as an experimental photographer because he works with different processes and materials to create a tainted kind of beauty in order to balance his artistic concept. He is well-known for his usage of anything pertaining to body fluids or food as a part of the development process of his photographs.
I believe that his utilization of materials to manipulate his photographs illuminates more or less a 3-dimensional presence in his work. It is more influential on the viewer or audience because they are able to perceive the focus of the photograph alone with a tangible material that was used to manipulate the pictures.


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