ESSAY-ORIGINAL SIN TO CRUSIFIXION
Reviewer Portfolio Feedback
You have some very strong work in your submission. I very much appreciate your inquisitive eye, and I can tell that you are highly attentive to the expressive possibilities afforded by examining the human condition with a camera in hand. One of the stronger elements are your series is that you often conflate dire and painful situations from history and religion with rather mundane and sometimes whimsical objects, such as toy trains and anthropomorphized flowers. This is perhaps one of the stronger aspects of your series - the casting of utilitarian objects in the service of a very grave and sober concept. In particular, there’s a heightened degree of pathos via the flowers in images two, three and four. In particular, image two is quite striking, although all the foreground elements seem a bit dull in luminosity and low in contrast. I also applaud images five, nine and ten - of course, there’s nothing whimsical about these pictures as they make direct reference to the final solution of World War II and somewhat more general evocations of the loss of life. In these two groups of pictures, I identify two disparate poles between which the remaining pictures vacillate. My primary suggestion for improving the series is to try to achieve greater continuity across your pictures. You’re working with wildly varied subject matter, styles and aesthetics. Consider narrowing your overall scope so that there are more formal similarities between the pictures. For example, while there might be a conceptual aspect to your decision to include two monochrome images, the result is that images five and ten carry so much additional visual weight that not only do they stand out but they impede the flow of the series. In regard to your project statement and the wider scope of the series, I suggest you reign in and curtail your concept somewhat. Your concept as stated in the extremely brief project statement entails the sweep of human history from biblical times through the horrors of the 20th century. It can be difficult for almost any artist to create an engaging and sustained series with a concept that aims to speak to such a wide swath of specific elements from history. A notable exception is that such general concepts sometimes can be successfully realized with images that tend to be more abstract, conceptual and non-representational. My suggestion is to hone in upon more specific elements of your current concept and develop those more fully. I hope you can tell that I found your work highly engaging overall and I particularly appreciate your eager and passionate eye as an artist. My primary suggestion is to consider refining your overall approach and concept for this project. I think the more specific you can make your narrative investigation, the more refined, relatable and ultimately universal the series will become. Thank you for submitting your work to LensCulture.