Tim Davis - Permanent Collection (2005)
“’All art ends up as photographs,’ Tim Davis has pointed out, ‘and in a strange misalignment, most of those photographs depict only the artworks’ images, not the fact of their material presence.’
Tim Davis’s photographs of paintings are phenomenological, relishing in the materiality of the paint and the history and labor embedded in the canvas.
They are photographed from oblique angles so light from existing museum sources changes the often-reproduced meaning of these works, adding light to familiar narratives, and blotting out anticipated images.
In a move unfamiliar to photography, the light in these pictures is often used to obscure, as well as to illumine. The light, more than a way to describe, is part of the picture’s content. It is an essential part of their content, not merely an aesthetic or storytelling tool.
With no flash or external lighting, and printed to approximately the size of the original works, the pictures remind us that works of art are vivid and present things curated in particular places under concerted conditions, rewritten by the careful decisions of humans and institutions.
Made with a large-format view camera, and presented with no glazing, the photographs themselves hope to blur the boundaries between painting and photography.”