DOUBTING ABOUT IMAGES
6th of December to the 20th of January 2006. Tuesday to the Saturday . Opening 3 - 7pm
"I do doubt about images" - this statement by Daniel Malhão is enlightening of his way of seeing and working and, more than the assertion of a sort of scepticism towards images, it translates his posture in front of what he has to or wants to photograph.
Precisely this group of photographs merges the need and the desire, meaning they are as much the result of commissions, such as, "Shots" and "Pátio de Inquisição," as simply of his wish to photograph something he has seen.
A long time elapses between the request or the decision to photograph and the photographing itself. Meticulous, Malhão – desperately meticulous, would say the people waiting for his photographs – sometimes makes preparatory drawings of what he wants to photograph. The drawings, he acknowledges, are a pretext for a lingering look, but are, foremost, the response to a need of all apprehending, of seeing as much as possible and in every way. Light, shade, colour, volume, framing – every detail is meticulously studied, thoroughly considered; nothing in these photographs is the result of spontaneity or a sudden act of will. Malhão is the opposite of the photographer who is always carrying his camera around and is always ready to record an event; rather, he is like a predator that circles its pray, that analyses the terrain well, up to the decisive and swift moment of jumping and attacking, sorry, photographing.
Malhão has stood out by photographing architecture, something that is, by no means, strange to what is presented in this exhibition.
If painting is representation, colour fields, light, what is architecture? It is the materialization of a drawing in all its physicality, weight, and enormity: the stroke of a pencil becoming mass and volume. It is the maximal 'physicalization' or embodiment of a space created from dots, directions, tensions, inward and outward glances, inner and outer views, facades and volumes, windows and doors, walls and floor.
Photographing architecture or spaces under construction is thus the passage from that maximal 'physicalization' to the two-dimensional rule of image. More than anything else, Malhão uses perception: the seeing and not seeing, the ways the viewer relates to the image, what it evokes and where it sends us.
For some, these photographs will simply be plain records of semi-industrial spaces or of a studio or the white wall of a gallery space; others will see in these photographs other works, namely, those of conceptual and minimalist authors: the picture within the picture, the sculptural volume, the monochrome, the geometric suspension of lines.
The two-dimensionality of photography is loaded with intentionality and, above all, with successive layers of perceptive acts, of transversal looks, pregnant with plastic information. Because, one has to doubt the image in order to go on seeing.
For more information, contact www.Baginski-photography.com