Tutorial with Jonathan Kearney
Tuesday, 15th October 2019 at 12.30. Skype call.
- We started by discussing the practicality of submitting my research statement via Moodle.
- Jonathan felt that the reference to Burtynsky’s work was of particular value, especially his dramatic photographs of people at work and over-industrialised landscapes.
- I explained that one of my models disapproved of my visual work. Therefore, in consequence to ethical considerations, I made a decision to delete a substantial volume of experimentation. We reflected on the idea of ownership and moralality in portraiture.
- We discussed my most current pieces titled: Snake Seller and Burmese Captain. Jonathan proposed a number of new ideas and possibilities for further investigation. The main one was to include a running commentary explaining my observations of people during my research expeditions.
- He also suggested that I should redefine the element of questioning in my project. Is my work about a dialogue with my models or is it a subjective observation of how people live? Perhaps, recognising that I am using my own perspective, while looking at the Universe adds value and gives me a new potential for further development. We agreed that a form of an audio narrative would create another layer of understanding to my work and enrich the overall experience of both viewing it and embracing my perceptions.
- I have previously experimented with embedding text into images, through animation and the use of supporting commentaries. I indicated that most people, who I have interviewed were relatively shy and reluctant to be photographed and recorded. Therefore, it would be very difficult to gather recordings of primary sources for editing. Jonathan suggested that I should consider using my own voice.
- The project is about my subjective view, observations and individual perceptions of reality. Therefore, all minor insights and details are important here and should be skilfully employed in order to reveal sensitive parts of the story and reinforce the meaning of the work itself – I am imposing my view of others and, subsequently, opening up the situation.
- I outlined my ideas for the next stage of development. My plan is to work with an image of a coach driver and his assistant in order to explore this concept further: waiting for the coach to fill up, waiting for its departure, for the repairs to be completed, to reach the destination… all of this only to restart the process again.
- We also discussed another two opportunities to gather additional primary sources and interview people as follows:
- illegal workers from South and Central America in Spain at Christmas.
- Return trip to Thailand to interview and record Burmese labourers and Thai masseurs at Easter.
Our Skype conversation ended at 13.36.