Affected Polaroids

In terms of paint pulled across the instant Polaroid photographs, the paint breaks down the reality of the space, the seeming truth of the instant photograph. We automatically assume the photo to be the closest representation of truth or reality. The paint becomes otherworldly (it is literally another medium), which interferes with the reality of the photographic space. It creates a disconnected relation to the piece, forming something new. This new piece that is created contains an abstracted mark or area, which interacts with the home. This abstraction forces itself upon the home, space, or photograph, regardless of what is going on within it. It conceals information. It makes things disappear or reappear. There is an organic movement to this mark. It is alive. To the photographic material and initially to our human eyes, there isn’t an easy explanation to the encounter with the paint. For me, the paint agitates the mind. It forces us to think differently. There is a tactile quality. The paint is viscous and wet. We think in terms of the haptic. The boarder of the Polaroid remains intact. In this way, the paint becomes both a part of the photograph (through its framing) and also exists outside of the photograph (because it is a foreign material and has a different raised textural quality). It is an unwelcome and unknown force from the outside attempting to break inside.

This focus on the ‘home’ is important to the conceptual part of the work. Hauntings most frequently occur in the home. The place in which we are most comfortable. The Freudian idea of “unheimlich” literally means “unhomely” or uncanny. “The subject of the “uncanny”...undoubtedly belongs to all that is terrible—to all that arouses dread and creeping horror; it is equally certain, too, that the word is not always used in a clearly definable sense, so that it tends to coincide with whatever excites dread” (Freud, The Uncanny). Let us think about ourselves, our body; in the public realm we are exposed and there is a slight sense of insecurity as compared to when we arrive home. At home we let our shoulders rest and our minds relax. This house, our home, is where we become comfortable because it is a separation of the public realm and the private realm. The outside and the inside. The idea of the uncanny or unhomely happens when something invades our space, our home, or our mind. It is something which seems familiar but is not not. There is something off. It is something foreign and abnormal in our space. This idea of the uncanny can relate directly to spectral encounters. They throw us off balance when we least expect to encounter them...