Edition 2012

Artist presented by Phillip S. Block

Hannah Whitaker

Hannah Whitaker is a photographer who builds meaning from the spaces in between her photographs. Photographing disparate subject matter, in a manner that is decidedly unmannered, she produces visual metaphors which ask more questions than provide answers. Her pictures speak at once to the history of representation and photography, while conjuring a natural world startlingly real, yet ambiguous at the same time. Not without humor, her work challenges each viewer to discover the meaning they glean from making associations and careful viewing. Her ambiguity of meaning is both intentional and welcome. Phillip S. Block Hannah Whitaker’s subject matter tends toward the dramatic—snakes, the cosmos, volcanoes—content that brings along its own baggage. By forcing its co-existence with the more mundane, she approaches this imagery with a critical distance, placing natural theater alongside still lifes made from the detritus of everyday life. Drawing from her experience shooting on assignment or from the history of photography, she often uses other photographs as starting points from which to generate ideas. Her practice resists rote production, choosing instead to approach the making of each photograph with a new strategy, continually trying out different photographic idioms. Her recent work resumes an ongoing interest in depicting entropy, showing the decay of a rotting tree, the texture of a cave wall, or the smearing of paint. She typically shoots on film, at times allowing light to partially leak onto the film in controlled, but unpredictable ways. The resulting photographs highlight the precision of photographic detail alongside the imprecision of photographic accident.

Framing by Plasticollage and Jean-Pierre Gapihan, Paris.
Exhibition venue: Atelier de Mécanique, Parc des Ateliers.

  • Institutional partners

    • République Française
    • Région Provence Alpes Côté d'Azur
    • Département des Bouches du Rhône
    • Arles
    • Le Centre des monuments nationaux est heureux de soutenir les Rencontres de la Photographie d’Arles en accueillant des expositions dans l’abbaye de Montmajour
  • Main partners

    • Fondation LUMA
    • BMW
    • SNCF
    • Kering
  • Media partners

    • Arte
    • Lci
    • Konbini
    • Le Point
    • Madame Figaro
    • France Culture