Adam Fuss on His Cameraless Images and Experimenting with Live Snakes
The entrance to the Cave of Lascaux in the Vézère Valley of France stands as the
doorway to a touchstone of culture. Within this darkened space lies the idea of the birth of civilization, where many thousands of years ago, primitive people created the first cave drawings.
Adam Fuss’ image is centered on the notion of the womb: a dark yet safe and protected cave-like space. The womb could not, in fact, be photographed, because it is more an idea than tangible “thing”—an unlit, arcane space. “Home and The World” is a result of the artist’s desire to capture an elusive capacity, and ending up depicting the doorway to an unfathomable place of creation.
Image rights: Fran Parente
New York, United States
Photographer Adam Fuss places living and non-living objects, including balloons, flowers, water, babies, animal entrails, and skulls, directly onto Cibachrome paper and exposes them to light, making photograms that explore imperfection, intimacy, nostalgia, and the passage of time. In the 2010 series “Home and the World,” Fuss’s gelatin silver print photograms and large-scale daguerreotypes record groupings of live snakes on stained mattresses and a close up of a vagina. Snakes and Ladders (a Jain morality-teaching tool developed in India during the 16th century), ancient mythology, and the work of social symbolism scholar Carl Schuster all inform Fuss’s poetic imagery.
British, b. 1961, London, United Kingdom, based in New York, New York