Where the darkness loiters

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Abstract

Notice the superbly controlled tensions in this image? The composition torqued around the central tree; the welted concrete border that holds the park and the street so closely opposed; the dusty heat of the concrete city fizzing into the cooler ‘green’ on the other side of the dividing line; the man perched athwart that line; the machine motoring through the green on its way back to the grey; the harsh toilet block — a massed and pungent chunk of city — clamping the barely organic ground as if governing the paltry nature of the place. Notice, also, the question posed by the aesthetics of the foreground: where do I, the viewer, stand in relation to this ‘nature’, this ‘culture’ and this scar of division that scythes towards me as I contemplate the scene? For as long as I look at it or remember it, this image unsettles me in the way its composition is so brittle, ready as it is to craze at several points of stress. With all its formal emphasis on composure and regulation, the image also ‘tells’ of doubt, equivocation and mutability.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-254
Number of pages4
JournalHistory of Photography
Volume24
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2000

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