Sunday, November 18, 2012

Shoot! Existential Photography

Shoot! Existential Photography is a special exhibition at The Photographers' Gallery in Soho, London. It examines a popular attraction that appeared at fairgrounds around Europe after the first World War where people would attempt to win a photograph of themselves by shooting the centre of a target with an air gun. A successful bullseye will trigger a camera nearby. It's the ultimate in self portrait photography.

The exhibition inspects the number of artists, photographers and general public who celebrates this unique game. On display are works by the Swiss artist Rudolf Steiner. Steiner would literally shoot a picture of himself, with the bullet hole being the aperture of a pinhole camera, in a series called 'Pictures of Me, Shooting Myself Into A Picture'.
Result! A picture of yours truly, holding the rifle wrong...
Also on display are self portraits by Ria van Dijk of Holland. Ria van Dijk has been creating self portraits by shooting herself since when she was sixteen in 1936. Every year since then, bar the period during World War II, she has won a photograph of herself shooting. Now 92 year old, she isn't planning on stopping anytime soon.

For a small fee, visitors to the exhibition are allowed to have a go at taking their own self portrait via an air rifle. The exhibition is open until 6 January 2013. Entry costs £2 with four air gun pellets costing £3.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is amazing! I am making a mental note to visit this when I am next in London.