FMG Arts takes a look at Carl Robinson, a visual artist based in the East Midlands. He works in the realms of digitally manipulated photographic images examining artistic invention, thwarted narrative and the consequences of looking. We look at works from his two most recent series titled ‘Milk’ & ‘Absorption’.
‘Paula & Amber’
My practice centres on the creation of digitally manipulated photographic images that aims to bring together a conjunction of three themes: artistic invention, thwarted narrative and the consequences of looking. I am particularly interested in creating works that concentrate on the problem of pictorial narrative, especially where this intersects with ‘realism’ and how seemingly emphatic images that deny ultimate decoding raise questions around the differences between ‘seeing’ and ‘reading’.
The work draws on elements of a visual language taken from classical western European painting, particularly in its seductively appealing look, arrived at by constructing images through digitally enhanced photographic techniques. There is an attempt at disrupting the solidity of this aesthetic through engaging visual complexities that may lead to multiple and unstable connotations, particularly in how codification within the work may be read. It is the balancing of this aesthetic, describing what is a clearly readable image on one level coupled with potential layers of significance on another, that aims to bring tension and dynamic to the work.
Developing work in series and sets of images allows for exploration of a wide range of what may at first appear to be disconnected elements and themes. A complex interweaving of aspects of concealment, revelation, sexuality, ambiguity, and codification can then take place. The sets are continuously added to and refined as elements reveal themselves as possibilities for further exploration, and works are brought together in various combinations to form larger composites where a mosaic of imagery deepens resonances across the whole. The placing of seemingly disparate images together, whereby new works and dialogues are created, aims to develop understandings of ‘frame’ and what is happening outside of and between photographs.
‘Young Woman Reading A Book’
‘Young Man With A Cafetierre’