Friday, 27 March 2015

Cultural Imaginaries & Landscape

Landcapes were the unsung heroes of photography for a while.  They were simply used to fill in the negative space around the subject of the photograph.  As art evolved, so did photography.  Landscapes became a subject in their own right.  Landscapes show us the world that we live in, they are used to show the beauty or horror of the world around us.  Peter Lik is a photographer who focusses heavily in the unseen beauty of landcapes.Evolution

Wallace's Hut

Red Dawn

By using filters over the lens of his camera he captures stunning landscapes all over the world, never featuring human interaction in his photographs.

Cultural Imagineries is a relatively hard concept to understand.  The best way to understand it is by picturing a migrant community in a city, let's say New York.  The migrant community are in a location that is not their own, but they create their own culture.  This culture is neither here nor there.  It does not exist in a place, rather, it exists wherever the community goes.  It is an imaginary culture.

Professor Hector Perla (University of California - Santa Cruz) describes the Latin American identity as an imagined community, one that is “socially constructed through narratives, myths of origins, symbols, rituals, and collective memory…imagined by people who see themselves as part of that group…”

Cultural Imaginaries can also be used to describe the production, identification, and reproduction of a culture.  In terms of photography it could be argued that photographs contain Cultural Imaginaries as the culture is not really there.  It is in the photograph.

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