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AVM_02 by Caroline Fellowes


AVM 02   Caroline Fellowes  2014.  

Image size : 22,4 cm x 27,7 cm    

Epson Ultrachrome K3 print on A3 Hahnemühle Fine Art Photo Rag.  Edition of 5.

"These extraordinary pictures are by Caroline Fellowes, an artist who lives in France but is represented by a gallery in Derry, in Northern Ireland*.   They are wonderful things, and I post them today because they happen to sit right in the middle of a number of conversations I seem to be having with increasingly frequency of late. Fellowes’ series here is made to face a perennial challenge in photography - one which I have approached from different angles on this blog several times in the past.  Fellowes’ pictures (they’re called Animal Vegetable Mineral) record the marks made on her windows by a number of different agencies : heat, plants brushing against the glass, cold, limescale, water, the tracks of various kinds of animals, fingers…  Naturally, they are visible only in certain lights, at the right angles, and for a particular time.  They come and go, too : smear marks in condensation today will re-appear in tomorrow’s condensation, even though they seemed to have gone when the pane was dry.  Not only are they photographs in fact - beautiful fancy digital prints on water-colour paper, since you ask - but that temporary quality makes them wholly photographic in conception, too.  So much photography is about seizing what will not otherwise stay, or seeing what cannot otherwise be seen.

Yet the pictures in Animal Vegetable Mineral are in one other important sense antithetical to core photographic values, too.  These take great store by the business of mark making which is normally absent in conventional photography.  To that extent, they have more to do with painting, and indeed Fellowes is a distinguished painter as well as a photographer and knows very well what she’s about in that regard."

Francis Hodgson, November 2014


* now represented by Oliver Sears Gallery, 29 Molesworth Street, Dublin 2.


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