Identity and Place

Blas' OCA Learning Blog



Post-Photography – The Artist with a Camera

A complete vision of the contemporary practice of photography, the book offers a view organized in five themes that not necessary have a correspondence with the traditional photographic genres, but shows a good representation of the way photography is used nowadays for several artist. Continue reading “Post-Photography – The Artist with a Camera”

Photography: The Key Concepts

Basic text for an in-depth analysis of the different aspects of photographic practice. The approach is not as pragmatic as in Liz Wells’s text, here the texts are a bit more abstract than in the Well’s book, but it is a great help to establish the key elements of any photographic genre. Continue reading “Photography: The Key Concepts”

Photography: A Critical Introduction

This book covers a wide range of topics related with Photography from different perspectives: cultural, political, anthropological… The book is a compendium of six essays written by different authors (Liz Wells, Derrick Price, Patricia Holland, Michelle Henning and Anandi Ramamurthy and focusing each one in a specific questions, such documentary photography, vernacular photography, the human body, advertising and commodity photography or photography as art. Continue reading “Photography: A Critical Introduction”

Behind the image

This book was fundamental for the development of this course, since it exposes in a clear and concise way how to plan and develop the work behind a photographic project. It is not a simple theory book, it is profusely illustrated with practical and detailed examples of how each stage of the project should be addressed. Continue reading “Behind the image”

Family Frames

This text reflects about the photography in the family context, using different approach related to the field of sociology, anthropology, psychology and psychoanalysis. Some chapters are very difficult to read, because they required a deep knowledge of these specific areas mentioned before.

The first chapter “Mourning and Postmemory” is fundamental to introduce the concept of post memory, perfectly illustrate by the comic book “Maus” by Spielgman. The author analyses the presence of photography within the narration of the events that take place during the Second World War to his own family. I found very interesting the idea of photography as an umbilical cord with those lieux of the memory, that otherwise would unavoidable fell into the oblivion.

Interesting the second chapter “Reframing the human family romance” which introduces the concept of the hierarchized view within the familial gaze: “The conventions of family photography, with its mutuality of confirming looks that construct a set of familial roles and hierarchies, reinforce the power of the notion of family”. Under this prism, the author explores the well-known exhibition “The Family of Main”, “conceived as a mirror of the universal elements and emotions in the everydayness of life –as a mirror of the essential oneness of mankind throughout the world”.

The intensity of the book grows in the third chapter “Masking the subject”, where the concept of affiliation appears to refer the way on which we perceive family photographs. I have to admit that from here the book is difficult to read, following the theoretical reasoning of the author requires a deep of understanding of a matter out of knowledge. Although the path of reading is harder, it’s worth to read to get some useful ideas.

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