Framing Colour: On the ambivalent desire for colour in photography & the visual arts
Symposium organised by research group Thinking Tools
Wednesday 22 November, 10:00 - 17:00
When photography was first introduced in 1839, it lacked a vital component: colour. The absence of colour was no accident, given that the photographic system is in essence achromatic. Several attempts were made to add colour to this new medium, each relying on lithographic, optical, chemical or digital interventions. This led to a distinct difference in the way colour operates in technical images. Being produced by external forces, colour is always an artificial addition to the photographic process.
The symposium Framing Colour: On the ambivalent desire for colour in photography & the visual arts aims to explore the effects of this particular predicament. Through a series of talks by art-historians and artists, the symposium hopes to shine a light on the different technological procedures used to create these colourful images and analyse how they articulated new ambitions for photography. Understanding colour not as just a surface phenomenon, but as an integral part of the structure and meaning of photographs and artworks, we invited contemporary artists to discuss their specific interest in colour. As such, the symposium also peers into the fraught cultural and aesthetic histories that arose with the introduction of colour photography.
The invited speakers are: David Batchelor (UK), Nathalie Bouloch (FR), Matthew Brandt (USA), Franceso Del Conte (IT), Hilde D’Haeyere (BE), Jan Dibbets (NL) and Bastiaan Van Aarle (BE).
10.00-10.30 Introduction by Steven Humblet
10.35-11.25 Nathalie Boulouch: Wavelengths and potato starch: turning points and debates in colour photography
11.40-12.30 Matthew Brandt: Toxic Colours
12.30-13.00 Bastiaan Van Aarle: Moving Mountains
13.00-14.00 Lunch break
14.00-14.50 David Batchelor: Colour as a Noun
15.00-15.50 Jan Dibbets (in conversation with Steven Humblet)
16.00-16.50 Francesco Del Conte (in conversation with Hilde D’haeyere): The representation of colour within the photographic medium
More info on: thinkingtools.art