New Photography: A Perverse Confusion Between The Live And The Real


  • Kirk Woolford


This paper focuses on the use of photographic images in performance. Specifically, it explores notions of liveness, realness, and place within a black-box performance space. The paper starts with a discussion of the noeme, or essence, of Photography and its relationship with the live and the real. It then discusses issues of ”˜New Media’ and how social and networked media have changed the act of viewing photographs, but not the essence of photography. The paper presents case studies where the author shot thousands of photographs and used live, digital techniques to give these images movement reminiscent of the original performers and locations combined with either live music, or live dance performance and asks how the use of real-time interactive media has changed the experience for the performers and the audience, why the collaborators wanted to go beyond simply presenting ”˜slide-shows,’ how the liveness of the still images animated the individual performances, how the politics of representation can direct which images are used and finally asks how photography and our experience of photographs is changing in our highly networked society.