Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Raquel Lauren, Q & A

Your work has a vintage, dream-like quality. Can you explain how you achieve that look/mood?

To get the dreamy, vintage quality in these photos I started by choosing color palettes that mimic the muted, faded colors of an old photograph and then used materials that would have an inherently worn looking quality. I first shot the images with a neutral toned chrome film and then exposed them onto Polaroid film which can be used to make dye transfers. I then made the transfers onto watercolor paper and made high resolution scans of the transfer prints. After a small amount of adjusting (mostly contrast adjustments) I then printed the final images onto canvas. I felt that the canvas would best emulate the texture of the dye transfers and I also want to stretch the prints over wooden bars, like one would do with a painting, so that the result could be unframed without looking unfinished.

Laura Hamilton, Q & A

Your work is emotional yet, at times, distant. How do the domestic settings in your work contribute to this contradiction?

I choose to photograph in the home, because I believe the home is the potential of human life, the replica of our own mother’s womb; it acquires the physical and moral energy of the human body. It is defined as a space where one feels safe and secure, but when these factors are eliminated thorough domestic violent human interaction the walls disintegrate and begin to tell the occurrences of what was unseen. The home represents fundamental aspects of our lives; its importance stems, in the first instance, from the intricate way in which it is bound up with the basic human needs to determine how we behave. It is the site of our upbringing and the place where we first learn of social relationships.
As I began photographing interior spaces and including staged incidents within my home I focused on the psychological diagrams: both room and house. As I see my childhood house now, the building is quite dissolved and isolated inside me: my bedroom here, bathroom over there, and a hallway that does not connect either of the rooms. Every detail is scattered inside me, the kitchen that possessed a glow of orange above the sink at night, the red stairs that led to the basement, and the words that flew from mouths and bounced from walls. The house acts as a body of images that allows illusions to manifest. By constantly re- imagining it’s reality the nucleus of the house is described.