Fade To Black

Spray Paint on 380gsm Canvas, Each 90 x 120 cm, Unique (2023)

‘Fade to Black’ is made by using dozens of found photographs from a flea market in Vienna. The physical photographs were laid out on canvas and lightly spray painted over in black to create a silhouette of where the photographs were placed. Compositionally, the end result resembles a stack of blocks on the precipice of falling down - in the midst of a moment of action.

Emphasising the idea that physical images can fade or become fragmented over time, the stacked arrangement of photographs suggests a layering of narratives, memories and histories. Each photograph, stacked on top of the next, interacting with one another like paths crossing for the first time. As part of the process of making these works, the photographs are simply used as ‘building blocks’. Once they are spray painted, they are no longer recognisable as images and instead exist as black pieces of paper.

Photographs are often devoid of sound or context. By treating them as mere material, the conventional significance that photographs often carry is challenged. By removing their original context through the process of spray painting, we are left to interpret the composition of the painting, instead of each individual photograph.

Jean Baudrillard suggests that photographs are not simply reflections of reality, but carry the potential to generate meaning beyond their visual representation. ‘Fade to Black’ resonates with this idea by attempting to find meaning in what is present as well as what is absent. Similarly to the way in which Baudrillard describes the photograph as something that transforms reality into a different form of representation, these silhouettes shift the original photograph into new abstracted and evocative forms that transcend their original states.