Join OCA BA Photography alumni, John Umney and Stan Dickinson, on a study visit to an exhibition of work by John Stezaker at the Whitworth Gallery, Manchester – 28 April 2018.
I love that moment of discovery, when something appears out of the ground of its disappearance: the anonymous space of circulation, where images remain unseen and overlooked. John Stezaker
This quotation was highlighted in the catalogue introduction for a touring retrospective exhibition of John Stezaker’s work in 2010. An influential figure in contemporary art for more than 30 years, Stezaker has had a long-term engagement with the ceaseless flow of images in mass media and popular culture. Using found photographs and other printed material such as postcards, his interventions involve collage, masking, cuts, rotation, and visual juxtaposition to create compelling, resonant and sometimes discomfiting transformations that disrupt and question both images themselves and our perception of them.
Stezaker works with the physical ‘image object’, but the questions he poses are just as relevant to the explosion of internet-based imagery, to the extensive use of appropriation and archival material in contemporary art, and to the artistic challenge of producing visual expression amidst the deluge of imagery that we experience every day.
As well as viewing and reflecting on the exhibition (and indeed, other work on show at the Whitworth) this is an excellent opportunity to meet fellow students and to talk to two of OCA’s 2017 graduates (both also past Presidents of the OCA Student Association). The exhibition will be of interest for students across all disciplines.
Image credit: John Stezaker, Mask XII, 2005. Collage © John Stezaker. Courtesy The Approach, London. Photo: FXP photography