12.November 2013 TUTORIAL

(GI)Huijun Guan管蕙珺: Only the first and last one has the yellow color? Why Jake: that was a question i had Jake: as well Sila Guven: this is very import an subject. Jake: i’m not sure i like the effect of just the yellow jacket  Jake: but that may be because i don’t understand the significance (GI)Huijun Guan管蕙珺: A kind of symbol? xiamagnus: it’s ambiguous! Jonathan Kearney: Xia 🙂 Jake: but if you mark a clear beginning and end doesn’t that remove the ambiguity? Russell Miller: I like it, it’s like a poem Edward Kelly: This is important. Ambiguity relates to the hidden narrative of the image, how the viewer’s imagination attempts subconsciously to re-construct the story that led to the moment of the image. Symbolism must not be arbitrary otherwise it becomes a decoy, a distraction from the process of filling in the gaps. Sicong Jiang: I naturelly link all the pictures and try to find the relation between them, they seem to tell a story Edward Kelly: So, a series of images will always be construed by the viewer as a narrative in some way. The hard part is to juxtapose images to lead the viewer on a journey of which you are in control xavi solé: in one of your posts, “Representation and Ambiguity” it’s said that : “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”. (GI)Huijun Guan管蕙珺: Sorry personal opinion, do u think if u deliberately give the color to the first and the last one, will it destroy the concept of ambiguity? xavi solé: Are you interested in the TRUTH? Jonathan Kearney: it is worth scrolling down to the first post on the blog to see some of Ruby’s previous work https://zhuqianru.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/previous-work/ here she wraps bandages round trees that have been cut down – what she hasn’t put on the blog is the film she made to go with this work, where she is in conversation with passers by who are confused by the delicate and caring actions of wrapping the trees but ultimately the action is pointless – the passer by find it highly ambiguous Jake: yes, i think that previous work creates ambiguity really effectively. xiamagnus: isolated, metaphorical color in black and white images is used often in narrative film (see Schindler’s List or Kurosawa’s High and Low) I think it can be a powerful storytelling device xiamagnus: i like the way you used it Edward Kelly: Or “Rumblefish” dir. Francis Ford Coppola Jake: i’m not sure if this new video does, but thats might be because on your blog you’ve accompanied it with contextual information Andy Venner: I find the bandages work really direct! Maybe i am Missing something Russell Miller: I’m sure you’ve seen this but Chris Marker’s film is a good example of using stills to create narrative  Jake: maybe the fact we are all taking such different things away from all of your work is a demonstration of it’s ambiguity xavi solé: in the Fluxus movement there’s an interest in how the viewer completes the story, am I wrong? Edward Kelly: With regards to photography and truth, I read an interesting article by Will Self about how nobody believes official accounts of President Kennedy’s assassination 50 years ago. It adds a philosophical opinion to the debate: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24852939 xavi solé: 12 monkeys is La Jetée’s Remake Edward Kelly: Perhaps you need to ask yourself, “how little of the narrative can I provide in order for meaning to be ctreated by the viewer”? We always seek to uncover the truth about an image… Shiye Teng: Talk about the truth, it makes me think about the news report Edward Kelly: which has of course, been edited Shiye Teng: The photos in the report Andy Venner: Yes selected truths Russell Miller: I watche Primer the other day, I think you’d like it http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0390384/ Andy Venner: Partial exposure xavi solé: the Kulseshov effect ! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kuleshov_Effect Edward Kelly: And Dzigar Virtof proved it with his juxtaposition experiments Sila Guven: I found something about metaphor and ambiguity, This can help you. Andy Venner: Like a VEN diagram xiamagnus: Ed- Errol Morris also made a short film about the Zapruder footage xiamagnus: http://www.vulture.com/2011/11/errol-morris-umbrella-man-jfk.html Andy Venner: With an overlap that is the third meaning Edward Kelly: Sorry, you’re right, Lev Kuleshov Shiye Teng: Ed yeah, been edited, you can see different information when it has been cropped different Jonathan Kearney: there was an interesting discussion on the TV last night between the author of a new biography about the great British painter Lucien Freud and one of his daughters who is also an artist — she said something really interesting – she said whenever she showed her art to her father and when she tried to explain the meaning – Lucien Freund would get very angry and say, I’m not interested in the meaning, the work is enough, what drives you to make art that is the most important,– he seemed to like the idea of ambiguity, at least in them meaning of his work Russell Miller: Xia – Morris’ Tabloid is a fantastic study in truth and myth making Jonathan Kearney: Ruby – really good example to be thinking about Sergi Eisenstein – you should really explore that further xiamagnus: Yes Jonathan – I always respect artists who refuse to talk about ‘meaning’ of their work xiamagnus: Russ- I like that movie too xavi solé: Jonathan and Xia – there’s a greek concept the “metis”, about intuition and subconscious Andy Venner: Xia – it’s an awkward question becUase it asks you to apply limits Jake: an artist cannot speak about his art any more than a plant can discuss horticulture. – jean cocteau Edward Kelly: I think Andy’s comments about Venn diagrams are useful. If we think about meaning in terms of the “watershed theory of cognition” by Edward De Bono, meaning is a resolution of ambiguity that we are most comfortable with. Andy Venner: To Summarise something with indicators that aren’t sufficient Edward Kelly: Talking about music is like dancing about architecture – David Bowie I think xiamagnus: especially the important ones Edward Kelly: Laurie Anderson? Steve Martin? Frank Zappa? Martin Mull? Elvis Costello? Thelonius Monk? http://quoteinvestigator.com/2010/11/08/writing-about-music/ Jake: there’s a quote i also read that may be relevant about how a photograph conceals more then it reveals xavi solé: Metis (μῆτις) meant “cunningness” or “wisdom, craft, skill” in Ancient Greek. Jonathan Kearney: Ruby – you have lots of interesting links and ideas to use from this chat so far – the subject of ambiguity is potentially vast, but I think you will find a way forward through a combination of reading theories AND making work, testing ideas visually Jake: sounds like baudrillard or something Edward Kelly: Yes, and this is what I meant by “the hard part” Xavi – being in control of the viewer’s journey Edward Kelly: guile Shiye Teng: I always see some artist explain their idea of work in some interview Edward Kelly: It wasn’t Elvis Costello (:| Jonathan Kearney: Ed, Xavi, – I’m not sure there is anyway to control the viewers journey, but with skill and craft maybe you can guide and suggest possible ‘readings’ of your images Shiye Teng: But I still believe the audience can be guided Edward Kelly: Well yes, that’s what I mean. NUDGE them

There are so many points of view are very helpful. One of suggestion is Jonathan notes that Sergi Eisenstein is a good example to be thinking about ambiguity. I will do some further research about that. Moreover,  as we know, ambiguity is potentially vast, I need to focus on the combination of practice and theory. Another suggestion is maybe making artwork is most important rather than making an explanation for the meaning of artwork. Because this is ambiguous in some way. Xavi also mentions that intuition and subconscious are potential concept. In addition, some relative links from this tutorial,which are very valuable. I think I will continue to do some projects on photomontage concerning ambiguity. However, Thank you all of comments from you guys, I will think about these feedbacks seriously.


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