In Re Ansel Adams

TR Flaxton

Research output: Non-textual formArtefact


‘In Re Ansel Adams’ was formulated to explore the core research question that was part of the original AHRC bid for my 2007 Creative Research Fellowship: ‘In what ways will High Resolution Imaging change the work produced in the convergence of art and visual technologies and consequently, our experience of that work?’ To answer this question I formulated the idea of ‘Quantum Resolution’ which proposed that audience immersion deepens with quantum as opposed to quantitative increases of resolution – that is the effects of deeper immersion would be felt with larger increases of resolution rather than incremental increases of resolution. Initially I formulated 3 practice as research portfolios as differing strategies to uncover the effects (if any) of increased resolution. These three were a) to examine everyday moving images of the world immediately around oneself, b) examine iconic moving images of the world and c) examine human portraiture and by way of this examine ideas around the human gaze. I argued that each work would be a building block in a developing argument to examine my hypothesis and that all of the works would be presented together in a major exhibition as the overall thesis – this occurred in December 2010 in collaboration with University of Westminster in their London P3 Gallery. ‘In Re Ansel Adams’ is the first work of the 2nd Portfolio which had as its base idea to re-present iconic images in a way that discussed their original material nature and what they could then become if presented in high resolution moving image form. This work was funded by an AHRC Practice and Applied award for £20,000. Adams’s iconic photograph, created in this case at Tunnel View in Yosemite National Park in the USA was a suitable subject to re-present. Adams delivered immediate impact through very high-resolution plate photography. I approached this iconic image by zooming in a 4k camera fully from 6 miles distant, then held the shot 30 seconds so that in post-production I might then digitally zoom in 1000 per cent. This showed the pixels themselves but also showed the remaining detail contained within them. I then zoomed back digitally and when I entered the province of the analogue lens image, whilst on location, I then physically zoomed back to reveal the same shot as Adams had achieved at a distance of six miles. This image is then presented as a 90 second loop on a 20 foot by 10 foot screen when in exhibition. This work was exhibited at various locations from publication date until the present (late 2011), subsequently I have spoken of the research outcomes in articles and papers at various international conferences.
Translated title of the contributionIn Re Ansel Adams
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationVarious (1st Exhibition, Bristol)
Media of outputInstallation
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2008

Bibliographical note

Medium: High Resolution Digital Installation
Event title: Various (1st Exhibition, Bristol)
Other: Part of the 2nd Practice as Research Portfolio from the 2007 - 2010 AHRC Creative Research Fellowship


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