October 27, 2010

№7: Contemporary Art Photography ≠ Photojournalism by Sam Milbrath

I am starting to get the feeling that many photography blogs and sites relate contemporary photography with politically or environmentally aware photographers. Is this because their subject matter is considered socially contemporary or politically correct today? Does incorporating current affairs of any kind make them more credible as fine-art photographers? Or does it place them as photojournalists and documentary photographers? I am a strong believer of art for art's sake. Contemporary art photography should be on the cutting edge of new ideas and aesthetics in art expression. Unless the photographer is totally brilliant in masking the underlying social message in favour of artistic aesthetics, I think for the most part, that the art loses all artistic appeal when combined with strong political, social or environmental subject matter. That said, current political affairs should not hold an obvious position in contemporary fine-art photography. 

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