Alice 24 Hour
A photographic exhibition by Rhett Hammerton
The truth is I love photography – but it also scares the living s@#! out of me.
I aspire to produce work as I see it in my head. As I pre-visualise it.
As a photographer, it has often been my experience that you are at the mercy of the process. Digital workflow has made things easier and faster, however it lacks the attention to detail and precision of works produced in bygone eras. Within the endless masses of contemporary photography produced, the elephant in the room is intention. I am not the kind of photographer that ‘shoots from the hip’ and whilst I acknowledge the existence of a decisive moment as a critical factor within an artist’s process, I am more interested in photography that moves beyond mere happenstance observation or documentation. I have a strong predilection for constructed imagery and within this medium, the intention of the photographer is paramount. Meaning is constructed before the frame is executed not after the dust has settled. The significance of images should be self-evident not layered on by posthumous suggestion or artists’ justification.
Aesthetically, my framing is based around and upon the works of turn of the century Australian photographers who, due to limitations of their equipment when working outside, tended towards capturing whole scenes rather than the intimacy of closed framed portraits. This economy of imagery produced snapshot of both time, place, as well as the relationship of the sitter to their context.
The following collection of images represents an attempt (although admittedly sophomore and still in process) of moving away from the way in which I have typically worked – arriving on location, scoping for an idyllic spot or as close to an idyllic spot as is available and shooting what is possible all within extreme time constraints, sometimes all done in under five minutes, to returning to working within the limitation of large format photography and all the accompanying care, heartache and sheer terror such a medium demands.
This is a simulacrum of a wider exhibition I hope to actualize in the future, one that captures and explores Alice and its varied and diverse inhabitants, their complexities and contradictions, and how we manage to co-exist simultaneously.
More press about Alice 24 Hour here.