This week really calls out to me – as a photographer I love finding and snapping weird and wonderful things. I love landscapes but I class one of my main hobbies as noticing the small, beautiful, insignificant things around us everyday and making them the subject. Below is a gallery of my favourites taken over many years!
Do we now focus so much on our phones and immediate environment we ignore the obvious beauty around us? Do we now not have an understanding of the unknown? How do we get back this natural inquisitivity or curiousity? John Berger’s film is perhaps more relevant now than ever before – as Winnie put on the Ideas Wall “the images now come to you”. We no longer have to go out of our homes to find an image we want to see or to even go to an exhibition. Everything is right at our fingertips – does this take us out of the real world? The fact we are spoon fed all this information, every day, means we no longer have to satisfy our natural curiosity with exploration.
We can now get multi-sensory videos and experiences that take us to a specific place / exhibition / city – is there any point now experiencing this first hand? There’s a strong argument to suggest that the image we are looking at through our screens is all we need – but there’s something else you get with a museum or physically being in a place. You get a sense of the sounds around you, the feeling of the physical object in front of you – when you see people using the VR headsets they don’t just sit there inanimate – they reach out, trying to touch what they see.
Thanks to the proliferation of media and the exuberance of news coverage, each and every activity around the world flies about, all of them like bits of grass spat out from a lawnmower, ending up as scattered data fragments in the media space”Kenya Hara, Exformation
We can no longer avoid this onslaught of data. Is there now a naive power in ignorance?
Further research: This fantastic series from Dentsu is a wonderful way to show how designers can use the ‘ignored’ or a simple object which, up close, is meaningless. When all the spheres are viewed together, one sees a face.
Hara, K. (2015) Ex-Formation . Lars Muller: Zurich.
John Berger film, Ways of Seeing