An Image Expressed Like The Juice of a Lemon
But what if the truth is neither in the represented nor in the representation? What if the truth is in its material configuration? To participate in an image rather than merely identify with it could perhaps abolish this relation. This would mean participating in the material of the image as well as in the desires and forces it accumulates. How about acknowledging that this image is not some ideological misconception, but a thing simultaneously couched in affect and availability, a fetish made of crystals and electricity, animated by our wishes and fears, a perfect embodiment of its own conditions of existence? It doesn’t represent reality. It is a fragment of the real world. It is a thing just like any other—a thing like you and me.
In An Image Expressed Like the Juice of a Lemon, Maryanne Casasanta’s work engages ideas about time, stillness and inactivity. Her work offers something to cull from and embrace rather than focusing on quiet as something threatening or numbing. When describing the use of silence in his compositions, John Cage has recommended that one should attempt to “see into where there is no ‘something’.” Casasanta attempts to articulate this notion through images that describe a sort of drifting through the day, punctuated by immersive moments of non-events—objects and moments so visually familiar that they are almost invisible. Their indeterminate quality is further enhanced by the use of various modes of material engagement and performance with the printed image. Her work willfully courts all the errors that photographers attempt to strenuously avoid.
Her stained, wrinkled, faded, ripped and scratched representations of moving light begin to read as a cipher of the visual process itself. These blinking, focusing and glimpsing images highlight the resonances between slowness, methodical taking of time, and transformative material gestures. This allows for an oscillation between generalized looking and close scrutiny of the photographic detail.
Maryanne Casasanta's broader practice considers the exchange between art and the commonplace, the space between objects and their documentation. She has a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Ontario College of Art and Design University (2005) and is a Master of Fine Arts candidate at the University of Guelph (2014). Exhibitions featuring her work include the Toronto Image Works Gallery for Contact Photography Festival and Xpace Cultural Centre in 2013. Her work is included among group showings at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, Art Institute of Chicago, Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art in Winnipeg, and at O’Born Contemporary, Art Gallery of Ontario, The Power Plant, and Gallery TPW in Toronto.