Representation , Ambiguity

The relationship between representation and ambiguity

This article discussed about what is representation in art. What is representational art? Author thinks that ‘representational art ‘ is easily accepted by viewers. It seems like everything is almost physical and visible. Author states that representational art better than abstract or conceptual art, because representational art is more “viewer- friendly”. In my point of view, I do not agree with it. I think that we cannot represent something completely  in art. In some extent, it means that the deviation is existed in representational art. By contrast, abstract, conceptual, indirect and illusive ways in art are more interesting. Otherwise, I saw a very useful comment relates to representation in art, which by Alan Mairson. He mentioned that photographs are often ambiguous. Without someone to spell out exactly what you’re seeing, images are Rorschach blots (10 people, 10 stories). I agree with it.

On the other side, below is another article of representation.

“Images are not a representation of reality”

Author states that images don’t really represent “reality” anyway.

Here is quotation from this article:

‘And this, from the Wired interview:

I’m not suggesting that a photograph cannot be trustworthy. But it isn’t trustworthy simply because it’s a picture. It is trustworthy if someone we trust made it.

You’re interviewing me right now, you’re taking notes and taping the conversation, and at the end you will sit down and edit. You won’t be able to put in everything we talked about: you’ll highlight some things over others. Somebody reading your piece in a critical sense will understand that your value judgments shape it. That’s perfectly legitimate. Turn it around: let me take a portrait of you, and suddenly people say, That’s the way he was.

We don’t trust words because they’re words, but we trust pictures because they’re pictures. That’s crazy. It’s our responsibility to investigate the truth, to approach images with care and caution.’

In fact, when you present art works, you can choose an indirect way but it is still authentic. Sometimes, indirect way is more powerful than a direct way. The indirect approach has a stronger sense of recording, which could be different forms. Such as an integrated artwork is mixed by many fragments,  a metaphor, an abstract pattern, an ambiguous image and a comprehensive video. All of these are related to the characteristic of ambiguity. That is why ambiguity plays a very important role in art.


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