I am working with staged photography as well as experimental animation based on my photography. I am since childhood on strongly near-sighted as well as face-blind and am interested in human visual perception as well as visual memory.
I am interested in street photography; particularly Japanese post-war photography is a great influence on my work. One of my favorite artists is the Japanese photographer Moriyama Daido, and his approach of “are, bure, boke” (Jap. ‘grainy, blurry, out-of focus’) matches with my own visual experience.
With this aesthetic in mind I am trying to make my photographs look like casually taken snapshots. However, my images are not casual at all and the creation per series in total takes about on average a minimum of two weeks, because I use self-made small scale ceramic figures as stand-ins for people and animals. The technique is rather like painting, because to a great extent I have to pre-plan the images and create their elements separately before I can take the pictures.
I am researching to what extent it is possible to say the same thing that is said in a casual snapshot or film by using these obvious models for a person, animal or plants in a photograph /film; that means finding out: what are the basic essentials we need to be convinced an inanimate object, for instance a young woman’s face (from ceramic) is alive although we should know, based on what we see, it isn’t, so it works as a vehicle to trigger a certain emotion in us. I am interested in finding out where the border is, if there is any. This work contains also concerns of doll play and puppetry.
I am mixing the staged images including figures with actual snap shots, instead of creating everything by hand, such as I also only create the figures myself, but place them in a realistic environment and try taking a picture that makes them become one. I don’t create a whole universe but use stand-ins for the creatures in my world.
For more information/work please view my website: www.josianekeller.com