Material Objects - Guilherme Ghisoni

In a previous work intitled Yet Present, I perform interventions on the photographic negative, in order to make evident the materiality of the photographic image. In those interventions, I burn parts of the negatives, make scratches and holes in it, and drip paint and other substances (such as coffee and tea) over it. Through those interventions I tried to show that the image is in the negative in the same sense that the stains, scratches and substances are over it.

The next step in this philosophical/visual inquire was to perform the same interventions on the negative, but without the presence of a photographic image in it – in order to show the materiality of the photographic image, without the danger of the illusion that photography would be a window to the past.

This idea came to me by accident. One day I mistakenly developed an unused negative. When I saw the completely transparent acetate, I had the idea of operating on it the same interventions of burning, scratching and depositing substances, that I had performed in the essay Yet Present. The result are the photographs of Material Objects.

Of the substances used, coffee proved to be the most surprising. The brown coffee stains on the negative, after scanning and reversing the colors, revealed a beautiful blue, present at many photographs of the essay. Fire was also a frequently used element.

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