Distracted by Abstract

During the last few wet, gloomy looking days, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to lose myself in abstract photography.

Lines, squiggles, dots, circles, squares, triangles in various combinations can formulate into thousands of differing images. With each glance that image can mean something completely different.

History of Abstract Photography

The genre got a push by surrealist photographers, but it was really American photographer Alfred Stieglitz who took the practice to a new level. It’s generally accepted that his series Music – A Sequence of Ten Cloud Photographs, is the first intentional set of abstract photographs. Created in 1922, this started twelve years of Stieglitz taking hundreds of cloud photographs, which he ended up titling Equivalents.

Putting practice into theory, in his 1929 essay about the history of photography, Walter Benjamin astutely observed that abstraction and photography aren’t mutually exclusive. “It is another nature which speaks to the camera rather than to the eye.” This gave further permission for artists to push the boundaries of photography, using it for other purposes outside of realism.

Abstract Photography Today

Now a widely accepted artist gene. I want to introduce you to a few that are living in New Zealand who have taken possession of my attention. Enjoy.

15 thoughts on “Distracted by Abstract”

  1. You have to have a wonderful eye for abstract work. I absolutely love the top one you shared of the swans and dead wood. Jackie Rankin link was my favourite collection, particularly the guy standing with his umbrella – very clever

    Liked by 1 person

  2. There are some extraordinarily talented people who can make photographs sing. I sometimes wish I did more than take snaps, but I don’t have the skill set or the imagination. 🙂 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with your photos. As with most professionals it has taken them years of focus and raw talent. I have no desire to become a professional. What I do enjoy photograhy at an amateur level.


  3. I like those two links very much, particularly the Rockface Collection by Jackie Ranken. Black and white photography has a ‘feeling’ about it I find fascinating.

    Liked by 1 person

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