Friday, 11 February 2011

Fine Art Photography

(photograph by Andrea Land)

I'm deeply suspicious of photography classed as 'fine art'. It's all so pretentious. Andrea Land is a self acclaimed fine art photographer and there is much to admire about her work. I particularly like her series on young girls in their rooms. She stands back and allows the camera to record the scene without photographic artifice or authorial input. Placing the viewer within the subjects world without intruding, either on their territory or worst of all, giving her images voyeuristic overtones. The resulting pictures are simple and effective. However, does this make them fine art? I often feel, and somewhat cynically it has to be said, that the most creative aspect of some 'fine art' lies in the written description of said art. A fine example is Andrea's own artist's statement. Perhaps it's a commercial imperative in order to loosen potential buyers into parting with cash for what is 'only' photography. Photography in the UK certainly does not command the respect it does in North America. But prices are rising and I'm kicking myself for not buying stupidly cheap original photographs I could have picked up twenty years ago. But then, they were 'only' photographs ...

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