Upon completing the last exercise on the subtleties and spectacles of Las Vegas, my particular topic led me to conclude that the spectacle of Las Vegas is, in part, achieved through a layering of elements, resulting in an intense time-space compression and choreographed narratives in which the visitor becomes the participant. (Klingmann also discusses this in further detail in Brandscapes.)
Exploring ways of capturing time, space and narrative, I remembered a particular artist who I studied a few years back (when I had time to pursue hobbies… imagine!) David Hockney was a well-known English artist who was interested in a full spectrum of the arts, including painting, printmaking, stage design and photography. His photo montages, which he called ‘joiners’, are of particular interest here. Hockney felt that a singular photograph was not effective in capturing space, time and narrative, as it did not reflect how humans digest visual information. Exploring ways in which photography can become interesting when heterogeneous, rearranged and distorted, Hockey recomposed pictures from multiple points, creating rich and complete images. There is much more that can be said about his work and this topic (and yes, the way it relates back to cubist themes of multiple angles and movement) but for the sake of returning to my work, this short synopsis will have to do…
“All you can do with most ordinary photographs is stare at them – they stare back, blankly – and presently your concentration begins to fade. They stare you down. I mean, photography is all right if you don’t mind looking at the world from the point of view of a paralysed cyclops – for a split second.”
“I realized that this sort of picture came closer to how we actually see, which is to say, not all-at-once but rather in discrete, separate glimpses which we then build up into our continuous experience of the world.”
Hockney’s methods are being used as a foundation for my design, applied both in terms of programmatic organization and the envelope system. I have much to resolve (hence the lack of sketches) but so far I’m confident in the direction it’s headed… Hopefully I can say the same thing at the end of the weekend. More on the actual design (and how it relates to Cirque) in my next post.