Photography for performance and installation art - Ken Dickinson Photographer, Camden, London

Go to content

Main menu:

Photography for performance and installation art

The Arts and Architecture
It's been said that art is the screaming pulse of humanity, trying to beat, and it's also been said, by Henry James in fact, one of the sanest of writers that: We work in the dark—we do what we can—we give what we have. The rest is the madness of art. Where does interventionist and performance art fit then on the spectrum between heartbeat and madness? It's certainly a form of conceptual art and as such values the idea or concept as more important than any aesthetic treatment of any materials involved. Now this itself may rule out it's consideration by some; certainly anyone who expects the artist to create special kinds of material objects. Anti-conceptual art sentiment abounds, the Stuckist movement memorably if simplistically criticised it on the grounds that 'Artists who don't paint aren't artists ' and whilst some of their tirade is probably tongue in cheek the sentiments expressed are widespread. But art can't all be Rodin and Rembrandt, and conceptual art has the ambivilance of ambiguity in its pocket. We're not told what to think; as in a David Lynch film, there is only the basic outline of a plot; the conclusion is up to the viewer & so to with artistic interventions: there is no 'right answer'.

And this is what I love about photographing performance and interventionist art. We have to think for ourselves when making our images, and take an individual point of view when we point the camera, or choose which variety or eloquence of light we prefer. 

And all our results, as photographers, will be different, and will express different nuances and subtleties of the performance or intervention, and perhaps say as much about us, and our way of seeing as they do about the performance or intervention itself.

Return to the home page here, or continue to the next page in this section, Photography for the Theatre, here.

Contact me on email on or by phone on either of the numbers below.

Back to content | Back to main menu