Walead Beshty

Fold (45º directional light source), December 22, 2006, Santa Clarita, California, Ilford Multigrade Fiber IV

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Walead Beshty, Fold (45º directional light source), December 22, 2006, Santa Clarita, California, Ilford Multigrade Fiber IV, 2006, Black and white fiber-based photographic paper, 61 x 50.8 cm, Art Jameel Collection. Photo courtesy of the artist.

Artwork Details

Artist

Walead Beshty

Title

Fold (45º directional light source), December 22, 2006, Santa Clarita, California, Ilford Multigrade Fiber IV

Date

2006

Medium

Black and white fiber-based photographic paper

Dimensions

61 x 50.8 cm

Credit Line

Art Jameel Collection

Work Description

Fold (45º directional light source), December 22, 2006, Santa Clarita, California, Ilford Multigrade Fiber IV is a photogram made from folding sheets of light sensitive photographic paper. The paper is measured according to the scale of Beshty’s body, and then cut and folded into basic three- dimensional forms. Light is then cast down on the forms from a controlled source, at specific angles. The resulting work presents multiple tracings of a three-dimensional object on the field of the photograph. The resulting photograph is both a depiction of the photographic paper and the paper itself, as the paper casts an image of itself onto itself through the exposure process. 

The exposure process for this work is under red light, however Beshty cannot see what is being made as it is being made. He is working blind within the parameters set up beforehand, and therefore becomes another instrument in the process (reduced to labour, to a body, to a unit of measure, equivalent to the paper or print processor) and not a conscious creator of the work while the work is being physically produced. This contrasts with the normal way that works are produced. Since there is no negative and no projected image, the works are unique, and because of this and the chance operations imbedded within the process, they are completely impossible to reproduce in any other circumstance. 

Beshty started the photogram works to explore using the paper itself to define the form, and to ignore the division between image and material so as to open up other options for the making of photographs.

Artist Biography

Walead Beshty (b.1976, London) lives and works in Los Angeles.

Walead primarily explores the ways to conceive and develop the photographic image as well as photography’s relationship to reality. Although he is most known for his photography, his body of work spans across media including painting, installation, sculpture and video. From 2007–2016, he taught at the Art Center College of Design, Art Institute of Chicago, University of California at Los Angeles, and California Institute of the Arts, among others. He has had solo exhibitions at the Musée d’art modern et contemporain, Geneva (2019); Thomas Dane Gallery, Naples (2018); Galerie Eva Presenhuber, Zurich (2016); Barbican Centre, London (2014); Thomas Dance Gallery, London (2012); Ullens Centre for Contemporary Art, Beijing (2011); and Malmö Konsthall, Malmö (2011). His work has been included in the Venice Biennale (2015), Shanghai Biennale (2012), Tate Triennial (2009), and Whitney Biennial (2008). Walead has organized exhibitions at Luma Arles, France; the Hessel Museum, Bard College, New York; the Rose Art Museum and P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York. He received a BA in studio art from Bard College, New York (1999), and MFA in photography from Yale School of Art, New Haven (2002).

 

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