Photo50 at the London Art Fair

What does digital really mean? What about material? And while we’re at it, how can we define photography, in this ‘post-internet’ era?

Andrew Norman Wilson, The Inland Printer 164

Source: Courtesy the artist, London Art Fair and Edel Assanti

Andrew Norman Wilson, The Inland Printer 164

We’re not too sure, but it’s these questions that the Photo50 contemporary photography exhibition at this year’s London Art Fair is looking to explore.

The fair’s contemporary photography showcase, Photo50, takes Immaterial Matter as its title this year, examining the ‘increasingly indiscernible distinction between the digital and the material.’

Nicolai Howalt, Solar 12, 2013

Source: Courtesy the artist and Edel Assanti

Nicolai Howalt, Solar 12, 2013

The photography section is curated by Charlie Fellowes and Jeremy Epstein, directors of Edel Assanti Gallery, and looks to present 50 works that explore what ‘digital’ and ‘material’ mean now.

The curators say the exhibition aims to ‘demonstrate the irrevocably altered state of photography as a classification in the post-internet era, in which images exist in potentially infinite alternative manifestations’, with work that delineates the ‘new ontologies and geographies that are developing as a result of the prevalence of free circulating digital information’.

Both lens-based and digitally-generated photographs feature, by artists including Nicolai Howalt,Constant Dullaart, Andrew Norman Wilson, Kate Steciw and Joe Hamilton.

Joe Hamilton, Div Contour, 2012

Source: Photo50 at LondonArt Fair 2014

Joe Hamilton, Div Contour, 2012

Hamilton’s piece, DIV/CONTOUR, is presented as photography, though in fact no cameras were used in its creation. Instead, the work is presented through the blogging platform Tumblr as a series of layered found images, which the viewer can scroll through.

Kate Steciw’s work operates in a similarly internet-dependent way, using stock images which the artist buys, crops and reconfigures into new pieces, looking to create an ‘ideological dissonance’ between their place in her work and in the commercial world for which they were intended.

Kate Steciw, Background, Basic, Bright, Burlap, 2013

Source: Courtesy Edel Assanti, London

Kate Steciw, Background, Basic, Bright, Burlap, 2013

On the fair’s opening day, 15 January, a number of photography-focused talks, tours and discussions will be held around Photo50.

London Art Fair runs from 15 – 19 January at the Business Design Centre, 52 Upper St, London N1

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