About Me

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MICHAEL SCHREIER Michael Schreier is a professional artist and photographer who has dedicated his considerable professional career to the celebration of both the public and private hero. Recent work includes Storyteller, Waiting for Words at the Ottawa Art Gallery, curator Emily Falvey, 2009, and the curating of the exhibition Dave Heath, A Heritage of Meaning, 2013 at the Ottawa Art Gallery. Selected works are represented in both public and private collections, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography, the National Archives Photography Collection, the Agnes-Etherington Art Centre, the Canadian Portrait Gallery, Visual Studies Workshop, (Rochester, New York), Light Works Workshop, Syracuse New York, Carleton University Art Gallery, and the University of Ottawa Library Special Collections.

Friday, 11 March 2016

Post # 7

(cursor on photograph for detailed view,
note: unless otherwise indicated all photographs,
by Michael Schreier and drawings by Hilde Schreier,
reproduction, without permission, prohibited.)

Post # 7: Theatre, installation, and the fragility of time

                  (the beholder, standing in place)

                                                                                             Dedicated to Marcel Duchamp

                                                                                         To be looked at from the Other side of the Glass 
                                            with One Eye, Close to, for Almost an Hour
                                                                                                              The Small Glass
                                                                  Marcel Duchamp
Artists using formal means in order to suggest an approach to their work, direct an individual's engagement and consequently, interpretation and understanding. In introducing a temporal concern, Marcel Duchamp proposes an additional element. As clearly outlined in the included link, The Small Glass, 1918, if taken seriously, the beholder would close one eye, while studying the work for just a little less than one hour. The artist insists on the beholder's singular absorption as the key to entry: implicated in a privileged viewing. As a complement, please refer to the following Kurt Schwitters, page 133 performance.

In the central panel of this post's introductory layout-the triptych-the right-hand photograph presents a series of numbers, a timeline, specifying the day-month-year, hour-minute-second, at the moment recorded, the [meta-data] from the digital file. One may also notice that the numbers are backwards. Consider that in order to read them correctly one would have to virtually enter the space from the other side of the implied film plane, suggesting a passage from one space to the other: the beholder becoming a subtle, active participant in the work. The number's transparency, including partial erasure might also suggest a potential fragility of time: referring not only to a document, but a moment in actual transition.

                       Étant Donne
(1946-1966)                                   Untitled, 1980                     
                                                                                            ( Fountain for Marcel Duchamp )       

Untitled is from a series completed in 1980, The Daly Building, now part of the National Gallery of Canada Collection. Composed of "In-camera" cibachrome photographs, rather than prints, the series explores trace-time in an abandoned building. Two fundamental truths concerning photography are, (amongst others), the presence of the objective witness, and the process of mark-making. Conventional analogue negative-positive photographic methods allow the artist/photographer to intervene and to render according to their immediate concerns and interpretation of the image. The in-camera cibachrome technique/emulsion which I used from 1978 through 2001 registers an image without intervention. It is its own event. It is important to understand that the in-camera cibachrome has a very low iso rating,
requiring as in this case a very long exposure, (2.5 hours). When I suggest that it is its own event, light moves, color temperature of the day changes, and a critical aspect to photography, the latent image is governed by reciprocity failure. The result is a very subtle optically inverted and delicate image.

From the series "Disappearing Numbers"

Digital Print
Michael Schreier

(Disappearing numbers = reciprocity failure)

 The photograph effectively implies an unknown, yet recorded series of anonymous moments. All this to stress that the process embraces philosophical perspective, rather than technical virtuosity. It is essentially a "way of seeing", the word seeing to include "understanding". The camera, incidentally, employs the same process of seeing that the viewer engages in when participating in both Duchamp's The Small Glass and Étant Donné. It must be understood that at the moment of exposure whether analogue or digital, the photographer does not see what is registered. His/her reference is only guaranteed when viewing of the file/print is completed.

Albrecht-Durer-Draftsman-Drawing-a-Recumbent-Woman-Woodcut-1525-Graphische-Sammlung-Albertina--1024x352.jpg (1024×352)

" Stand still and the story will come to you. "

André Gregory,
Before and After Dinner

Post #8

The Portrait and a Theatre's Silent Hero

 Portrait of an Old Woman                                          Anonymous Street Portrait
                                                       Peter Paul Rubens                                                     Michael Schreier
                                                         circa 1615                                                                     2004