Thursday, November 5, 2009

Head to Head: Mark Khaisman and Vik Muniz

The Telegraph just featured a gallery by an artist, Mark Khaisman, who has recreated stills from some of his favourite movies using nothing more than brown parcel tape. At first glance it appears they could have been made using state-of-the-art computer software but these images are created by layering strips of ordinary brown tape over each other...
London Telegraph: Parcel tape art by Mark Khaisman

(c) Mark Khaisman/Solent
Richard Widmark and Jean Peters in a scene from Pick Up On South Street 

I love it because it's reminiscent of Vik Muniz's "Best of Life" series:

(c) Vik Muniz 
In his "Best of Life" (1989-1991) Muniz aimed at verifying what traces of familiar photographs remained in the mind when they were no longer there to be seen. With an empirical procedure he drew from memory copies of well-known photos seen in the newspapers and on TV, like the execution of a Saigon peasant by a pistol shot through the head because he was believed to be a Vietcong (1968), the Vietnamese girl from Tran Bang running naked along the road with her skin burnt by napalm (1972) 1, or the Chinese student in Tian An Mein Square who opposed the government’s tanks with his own body (1989). These are all images that have so moved public opinion as to be impressed on the collective memory. When he thought his drawings had begun to sufficiently resemble the photographic reproductions, Muniz photographed them and obtained a silver-salt print of about 30 x 36cm. 

It is interesting to see – through Muniz's work – what compositional and iconic pieces of each of these famous photographs create indelible images in our collective memory.

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