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Germany (1958 - )
1992 - 1993
Laminated chromogenic color (Ektacolor) print on panel
29 7/16 x 27 1/2 x 1 13/16 in. (74.8 x 69.7 x 4.5 cm) overall
Gift of Burt and Jane Berman
Keywords: Seascape; Clouds; Series: Ground; Woman artist
The series Ground began in 1992 as an exploration of the conventions of still photography and painting. Barth generated her blurred images by focusing the camera on an unoccupied foreground. The resulting images hint at a location but ultimately reveal an indeterminate space designed to make viewers reorient their perception as they search for meaning in the work. Often the word “confusion” has been used to describe this experience, as one questions one’s own eyes in the attempt to decipher what this object reveals. On the one hand, Barth challenges the idea that a photograph contains information and likens these works to abstract painting. “Ground” also evokes formal and technical vocabulary — foreground/background; figure/ground; the ground (or support) of a painting. In the end, however, the phenomenon of Barth’s work remains essentially photographic. As the artist states, “blur, or out-of-focusness due to shallow depth of field, is an inherent photographic condition; actually it is an inherent optical condition that functions in the human eye in exactly the same way it does in the camera lens.” -- Label copy for Uta Barth, 2/12/2011 to 5/8/2011.
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