Friday, July 17, 2009

Bluralism, finally a legit art movement

lindsay lohan by chrissy miller/

Many railed over the quality of images that were snapped by mobile phone and uploaded to Twitter at Sydney's Rosemount Australian Fashion Week in May. “Blurry”, “average” and “grainy” were terms used to slag the images off, with several parties asking the Twitterati to cease and desist. Some derided the phenomenon as “the failure of new media”. We, the new media douchebags, girded our loins and smartphones, dubbed the movement Bluralism and joked that we might one day stage an exhibition. Well, typically, New York has beaten us to it. On Wednesday, the Stephan Weiss Studio staged an exhibition of camera phone images taken by 14 artists including Cass Bird, Justin Giunta, Richard Kern, Danielle Levitt and Chrissy Miller, who were each given a Casio Exilim Mobile with which to document one week. Although one great big promo for Casio, photos taken using other mobile phone brands were also included. With New York Fashion Week eight weeks away and more and more fashion players piling onto Twitter, frockwriter wonders if any of the city's more social media-savvy types have considered aggregating the best images from the anticipated deluge of SM coverage.


Style On Track said...

I like candid shots where you can make out quite a bit (eg. the main picture in this post), but when its too much of lights and blur that its barely anything worth visualising, then Im not that interested in the picture

Kat George said...

Patty I'd like to preface by saying that I love your work, and I did delight in the fact that you managed to roll with the punches and turn blurry photography into 'bluralism'.

However, I do fear that many of the images circulating from bloggers during fashion week were of a quality that rendered them almost completely useless. While some images beheld a lovely pattern on a swishing skirt or a glimpse of a sexy heel, many of the images were literally just a blur of nothingness!

I find it hard to liken these blurry images to the example shown above, which is a posed, still shot.

I don't mean to attack or deride bluralism, but I just think it's necessary to point out that there's a fine line and that while some of it works, some of it doesn't.


Patty Huntington said...

it might be a still shot, however lohan's face is so distorted, she looks like the antichrist. which is more than appropriate really and what makes it such a great shot. in the story (linked) the artist says that she had to explain to people that it was lohan because they didn't recognise her.

coining the word "bluralism" was a joke. but given that a company that actually makes mobile phones has since decided to test out the capabilities of its products by asking a bunch of professional artists to experiment with them, it's not an entirely inappropriate tagline. i adapted the headline from the original snippet which was: "the camera phone - now a legit artistic medium".

remember that at RAFW, those taking the shots were not professional artists or photographers. secondly, they were shooting everything that moved and instantly uploading the images to twitter, pretty much without editing. this exhibition is not a series of random shots, it would have been very carefully edited to cull the crap.

i suggested that someone might want to take a look at "the best" of whatever emerges from SS10. not everything that emerges from it.

Anonymous said...

Hello Patty,

I do understand why you'd choose to reply to comments posted to your blog but you seem like to shoot people's opinions down way too quickly. New media is an interesting, rapidly expanding force but to me it doesn't yet earn the front row position that some bloggers appear to feel they are entitled to. Blogs can connect people to information that is of the minute or timely and can express unique personal opinions but how does this compare to that of other entities that actually create imagery that has a lasting impact culturally.

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