"The Uncanny"

This digital photography series was created for a first year media arts assignment that explored the ‘uncanny’. For this project we had to select an ‘uncanny’ object and express its surrealist features through a six piece photo series using both studio ad natural lighting. Find the complete series and artist statement below.

The uncanny is something which is strange or mysterious, especially in an unsettling way. As Freud stated, “the uncanny is something repressed which recurs”, and this is what I channeled in my photo series.
Strong inspiration came from the image “Lee Miller” by surrealist artist, Roland Penrose. The uncanny aspect of this image was the fact that I was unable to identify the object in the left portion of the image. This uncertainty combined with the monochrome image quality created an uneasy and discomforting feeling. I wanted to recreate this sense of confusion which would build into suspense by not showing my uncanny object in its entirety. While my uncanny object of a decomposed lobster is dead, you are led to believe that it will come back to life as you look at it. It is this reincarnation which was explored by David Blake through “Photography and Surrealism: Sexuality Colonialism and Social Dissent” (2004) which took ideas from Freud’s essay; ‘The ‘Uncanny”’. I explored the uncanniness of death, dead bodies and the fear of reanimation which was the 7th uncanny theme explored by Blake and Freud.
This feeling of suppressing the dead and fear of the unknown is what this series presents and by presenting my images in black and white, this feeling of uncertainty and dread is more pronounced.
My three studio lit images are presented first for they contain interesting shadows and reflections which distort my object and are followed with three images taken using natural lighting which focus more on the object itself.
Applications used: Shot on a Canon 60D and edited in Adobe Photoshop
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