Olive Cotton Award: $20k Photographic Portrait prize awarded to an image that isn't a photograph

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by DanOstergren, Jul 25, 2017.

  1. pixmedic

    pixmedic The Mustached Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    there is no respect due either the judge or the judges decision.


     
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  2. limr

    limr Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Agreed. That was aimed more towards the folks in this thread who are trying to argue in the judge's defense :) I may disagree with them, but I still respect them.
     
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  3. DanOstergren

    DanOstergren Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Right, but the car was a car to begin with. The artist did not start with a photograph, just a piece of film with no photograph imprinted on it as a canvas for a drawing. At the end of the day it's still a drawing, not a photograph, and it took no photographic skill whatsoever to create. In the context of a photography contest, photographic technique should matter quite a bit and there was none used.
     
  4. petrochemist

    petrochemist No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Their definition actually states "an image produced by the action of light on a light-sensitive material" so you'll note it refers to an image as well in the same sentence you part quoted.
    Further down it also goes into the derivation of the word: "The word photograph was coined in 1839 by Sir John Herschel and is based on the Greek word ‘phos’, meaning ‘light’, and ‘graphê’, meaning ‘drawing’ – so ‘drawing with light."

    A fully exposed negative has no drawing, and while the price winner makes up for that with the subsequent scribbles they weren't done with light so don't upgrade the film to a photograph.

    If only I'd thought to enter a 'sculpture' made from a pile of waste camera bits, that would have been as related to photography & not been 2 dimensional so could have broken another requirement - how could it not win!
     
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  5. runnah

    runnah Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    But...what is art?
     
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  6. limr

    limr Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    :spank:
     
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  7. ClickAddict

    ClickAddict No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Irrelevant to the argument.

    People offended by this entry winning are not claiming that it's not "art" they are claiming it's not a "photograph". just like they would if someone entered a painting in a sculpting competition. Yes, both are art... no, both are not sculptures. (And to use some weird explanation that you are sculpting the paint would be such a stretch as to be offensive.)
     
  8. Gary A.

    Gary A. Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    A shoe has sole.
     
  9. runnah

    runnah Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I would argue that the irrelevancy of the argument is what makes irrelevant relevant.
     
  10. webestang64

    webestang64 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Art = 5% Talent, 95% BS. (My college art appreciation teacher told our class this as a joke, but I took her seriously).
     
  11. vintagesnaps

    vintagesnaps Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I wonder about some people having had such negative experiences with art - at least it seems like it. I always loved to draw and paint, etc. and took art all through school as electives. But nobody has to go to art exhibits or museums or do anything with art if they aren't into it. So if someone doesn't like this one or agree with the choice or whatever, then you don't have to like it or support it; it's their museum and exhibition and up to them I think. Although I can understand people not agreeing with this choice; it is a stretch.
     
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  12. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The problem with art, in my experience, is that its a subject where its possible to teach the subject with very few skills at teaching. In fact I think a lot of art teachers rely on a lot of "justification" of artwork from their students whilst typically fawning over those who show "natural talent". I think this overcome two key weaknesses in the system

    1) Time - it seems there isn't time to properly teach artistic methods - eg sketching/painting/photography/etc...
    2) Lack of technical understanding on the part of the teacher - both with regard to method and artistic quality.

    As a result art has quickly become a kind of magic. No other line of work people say "well you just have to be born a natural electrician" so much as in art. Even on sites like here one encounters many who consider composition to be a kind of either luck or mystical mythological power that other people have that can't be learned. Or which requires a kind of brain type defined by if you write with your left or right hand etc...

    However the teaching system also has a third weakness which is that it seems that many art teachers and schools want to encourage students so much that they actually give up with critique and improvement and instead focus on praise. Praise is good but when its heavily put on and you're writing essays to justify otherwise weak bits of art; that thinking sticks. It grows and nurtures a whole generation or three of artists who feel that art is more about justification and argument than skill.
     

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