Alisan Fine Arts is pleased to present the gallery’s first photography exhibition “Un/natural”, a joint show featuring works by Ming Thein and Stephen King. This curated selection of works examines the tension and similarity between natural and unnatural elements. In seeking to demarcate the line between nature and what we create from nature, the photographers’ works blur these distinctions and signs.
As the Swiss linguist and semiotician Ferdinand de Saussure demonstrated, the signifier or form the sign (or image) takes influences what the signified or concept is, and this relationship reciprocal. Thus, though the subjects of King’s photographs are found in nature, they appear seemingly too regular or uniform to be considered natural, suggesting that what is natural isn’t always represented within our system of language and imagining. Only once we go looking for signs, organic clues, within the photographs do we then realise that perhaps this is nature, because humans lack the necessary capabilities to produce such works. Ming Thein’s work is then a complete contrast to King’s, his photographs of man-made subjects are irregular enough to be plausibly organic, but as with King, a number of visual cues (such as text or machined edges) imply that what you are looking at cannot possibly be natural. We see “nature” as a sign or image represented by a multitude of objects and symbols, a tree for example, yet these simplistic conceptualizations are invalidated by these photographs.
Both sets of images have simultaneous elements of harmony and dissonance: in King’s case, it's the asymmetry that contrasts the calming tones. In Ming Thein’s images, it's the intensity of colour that both creates and dominates the overall structure of the image. There is a very strong element of abstraction to both - this is deliberate, to almost completely eliminate any sense of scale. It is a reflection of the fractal nature of both natural and man-made worlds. In fact, the cognitive boundary is blurred enough that is almost possible for the subjects to be from the same origin.
藝倡畫廊很榮幸舉行畫廊首次的攝影展「非/自然」,金昌民和鄧安銘的攝影作品二人聯展。精選展品 檢視了自然界與非自然界之間的對立和相似的地方。兩位攝影師嘗試從自然界和人類從自然界創作出來 的東西之間,尋找出兩者之間的分界線,再而把這些分界線變得模糊。
瑞士現代語言學之父索緒爾教授(Ferdinand de Saussure)的名言:「作出指示的與所指的(或意符與意旨)之間的關係是 相互影響的。」因此,儘管金昌民的攝影對象來自自然界,表面上看來,它們甚至比自然界更有規律,表現更一致性,攝影 家認為自然界不一定永遠代表着我們的語言體系和想像。只要當我們從照片中找尋自然界的符號和線索,我們就會發現這可 能就是自然界,因為人類缺乏所需的能力去製作這些影象。鄧安銘的作品正好與金昌民的產生強烈的對比,鄧的攝影主題是 人造物,表現不規律的、貌似自然界,但配合金的作品,正好暗示一些視覺的線索(如文字和機器邊緣),意味着我們眼前 所看見的有可能不是自然界。我們視「自然」為符號或影象,而這些符號或影象代表着大量的物件和符號,例如一棵樹,一 個極為簡單的概念,然而被這兩位攝影師證明是錯誤。
兩組系系列的影像同樣具和諧和不和諧的元素。金昌民所表達的是,與讓人平靜的色調所對立的不對稱;而鄧安銘的影像則 注重顏色的密度,成為影像結構的基本元素。兩位攝影師同時表達強烈的抽象性,而這是經過兩位反覆思考,幾乎完全與正常比例不相符,反映出自然界與人造世界的無限可能性。而兩者的分界線被弄得含糊不清,其實這兩個世界的東西極大可能 出於同一起源。