Kill nothing but time, Take nothing but photographs, Leave nothing but footprints

Re-discovering disposable things and images

Take nothing but time

The photographic installation by Robert Ern-Yuan Guth fills the humble gallery tiled floor of Your Mother Gallery, in Little India, Singapore. These tiles that now adorn the gallery are liven by printed images, of curious pavements, roads ‘scanned’ by the artist, and presented in a checked formation. Like some homely galleries in Singapore, I was drawn to kick off my shoes, and examine the floor, quite comfortably in the gallery. The artist had not just captured interesting texture, and banal disposables; he had rescued and transformed litter, into immortalised bytes, stored somewhere else. Nonetheless, the medium of digital photography has meant that the image has become more disposable, so these images are too, condemned. Or have images always been disposable, but the mindset of individuals towards imagery and memory have shifted, becoming ever short-lived and dependent on mechanical and electronic means?

The other merit of the photo-installation, was the interesting use of a scanner, attached to a laptop to capture these alluring images. The depth of field is uncanny, with its unnatural ‘un-sharp mask’.  It heightens the objects in these images, rendering them more three-dimensional than a normal photograph would.  I can almost imagine the curious, performative sight of the artist, lugging a laptop and a scanner, ‘marking’ and scanning the pavements during ghastly hours of a day, or during the peak of human traffic.  if Lomo photography sparked a trend  in the ‘snap shot’, I wonder if ‘scan shot’ would start a spate of demands for small, portable USB-driven scanners, and sparking a new means to examine photography as a genre and medium?

3.0 of 5 stars

Your Mother Gallery

till November 19

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One response to “Kill nothing but time, Take nothing but photographs, Leave nothing but footprints

  1. Pingback: The Artists Village: 20 years on « Artsingapore.org

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