08 February 2008

Chuck Close: contemporary daguerreotype

Cindy Sherman by Chuck Close
from A Couple of Ways of Doing Something (Aperture 2006)



Chuck Close:
A Couple of Ways of Doing Something
Photographs by Chuck Close
Poems by Bob Holman
Interview with Chuck Close and Bob Holman by Lyle Rexer
Clothbound, 22 tritone images
56 Pages, 11.375" X 14.875"
Aperture 2006

Excerpt from an interview by Lyle Rexer in the book:

Rexer: "And daguerreotypes are unforgiving. In the nineteenth century there were reams written about the fact that if you decided to have a daguerreotype made, you took your self-image in your hands, because nothing would be left out."

Close: "It was more warts-and-all than any other process. Because it’s so red-sensitive, any marks, any flaws are heightened. You have to be pretty comfortable in your skin, and vanity goes out the window. And it’s also physically painful. A normal daguerreotype is a more than two-minute exposure. We’ve made it instant photography by having a billion foot-candles of light go off all at once, and that’s very painful. The flashes are so intense your eyes slam shut. It’s like having an ice pick shoved in your eyeball. You can smell hair burning… Each one of these people who lent me their image with no control over how it’s going to come out, in this act of incredible generosity, had to put away whatever self-image they had of how they looked and accept this other image as being them. That goes beyond generosity."

source: http://www.lensculture.com/close.html

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