An introduction to the 12° of Other. Listed in ascending order, the descriptions give a quick background to the origins of the degrees, as well as their evolutions along the way.
The series of 01°—Other Spot reassembles images culled from extensive skin care auditions, illustrating an innate facial heuristic — the inability to undo the parts of a whole, in search of the perfect whole. Try as we might, it requires patience and careful attention to undo the strips of a face and study the individual parts. It illustrates how misleading our instinctual perceptions can be, and how unaware we can be of our pursuits to command a ‘Darwinian’ nature. Many commercial images are augmented in a similar manner, and volume two illustrates just how vulnerable our eyes can be to facial features, creating non-existent characters from the parts here.
02°—Other Look is perhaps one of our greatest perceptual failings, and one many of us don’t care to admit — I certainly don’t like to. Psychologists call it a facial heuristic that judges and evaluates faces in a mere flash. Competency, charm, warmth and connection can all be determined in mere fractions of a second. Using discarded auditions as a model, the choreography of the pieces work to capture some of the unbridled and misleading judgments that arise in this process. The stagecraft and markings on the images are borrowed from casting libraries of hundreds of thousands of scripts, performances, notes and shorthand evaluations of them.
While travelling to community centres and working with seniors, this series coined 03°—Other Time looks at the forgotten faces of age, and perhaps some of the misgivings in understanding how we navigate them. Photographed under a blue spectrum of light, the black white film enhances the histories, blemishes and maps of skin. These images grapple with the difficult issues of ageism, and how we age, and especially how we value aging. In the end, as dedicated and dogged as these faces once were to rearing and raising others, we don’t seem look after their needs with the same care as they did ours.
Covering commodified beauty standards, 04°—Other Face crosses into the endless search for the price-tag of ‘real beauty’. This series of anonymous fashion models pit characters who might command six figure sitting fees beside those who work for free. Neither are visible or distinguishable, becoming a reflection on our ‘Borgesian’ quest to unlock the value of beauty.
The 05°—Other Walk borrows on the massive appeal to participate in media images and to be ‘seen’ by them. A group of 125 film extras were asked to randomly preform in a ‘film set’ reverie. Subjects followed a film crew around to several private and public locations, where the groups and individuals were simply asked to lie down — from town halls, to forests, rooftops, to schools and street-scapes. The images themselves were then re-photographed dozens of times in a cycle between analogue projections, film captures and digital conversions to create an odd fantasy signal, from a fantasy noise.
Changing to another phase in our lives, 06°—Other Skin looks at younger subjects dealing with the freedoms and allure of a burgeoning ‘self-image’ market. The models are sourced from online modelling forums, filled with ambitious (if sometimes misguided) characters waiting to see and be seen – a quality we all posses to some degree or another. The images are self-styled by the models themselves and are choreographed around their own performances and amateur portfolios. In some ways, these forums recalibrate the boundaries of our cultural freedoms, sexualities, and the expectations we might have of them.
The series coined 07°—Other Promise borrows the characters and scripts from mass marketing campaigns and transposes them onto smaller commercial venues. Characters from actual advertising scripts (including alcohol, automotive, banking, and beauty campaigns) are re-contextualized into everyday commercial settings. The stagecraft, headlines, branding exercises and performances are all stripped to leave us with the wonder and folly behind our ‘brand’ performances.
The 08°—Other Taste re-enacts the choreography found in mobile phone, confectionery and commodity driven marketing campaigns, using an alternate (and fantastically insincere) gesture — the kiss. To illustrate their behaviours and intentions, the choreography looks at the at the deep seated fantasy cloaked in many of our public recitals. Consider the ‘kiss’ as potent a gesture as the handshake.
With the rise of a post-war Japanese culture, 09°—Other Sleep explores an alternate take on take on the choreography and promises that also echo through the rise of western media and advertising. In these scenes, the camera guides itself into alternate version of escape and lifestyle that modernity often promises to bestow. Set across the many Love Hotels of Tokyo and Osaka, the scenes restage these reveries and promises — with the promises themselves remaining somewhat incomplete. The public and private versions of idyllic love collide in these scenes.
The series coined 10°—Other Tribe colourizes images captured from the heart of American gun culture using discharged brass shell casings as a guiding palette. The images are ‘edited’ and reassembled, reflecting the meanings and inherit biases that follow and distort them along the way. The tribal nature of a gun culture is reflected as an almost ‘make-believe’, infantalized ceremony that we are all vulnerable to, but seldom admit to practicing.
11°—Other Prayer is a study in one of our most profound cultural evolutions — religion. Observing Egungun funeral trances with Voodoo elders of West Africa, the series looks at one the oldest and maligned faiths in the world. The social orders of Voodoo are captured across Togo, Benin and parts of Ghana and Nigeria. The memories of ancestors celebrated through the polytheistic practices of one of the oldest faiths known. As a kind of animism (attributing a soul to things, animals, and phenomena) it can offer — like any faith might —its own comforts and abuses.
Finally, the series, 12°—Other Grace explores food, livestock farming and slaughter using the same technology and equipment found in commercial studios that specialize in packaged food photography. Often polarizing, the result is an interpretation of an otherwise forgotten aspect of our food chain, and more importantly the dichotomies in how we address our food chains themselves.
Below is mosaic preview of the mirrored impressions in Volume 02.