Guest Contributor: Ben Alper
We founded The Exposure Project in the Fall of 2005 with a variety of aims in mind: to create an accessible forum for early-career photographers looking to showcase their work, generate a collaborative and reciprocal community-based environment and, ultimately, to broaden the dissemination of this work through a diversity of presentational channels. It has always been our belief that artistic camaraderie is an invaluable resource that furthers, not only the work of the individual involved, but also more broadly the discourse surrounding the state of contemporary photography. In the 4 ½ years since we formed, The Exposure Project has accented work in group exhibitions, yearly, self-published books, showcases through our website and blog and, most recently, with a collaborative online project entitled Graphic Intersections—which in many ways has been the most refreshing and experimental effort that we’ve facilitated.
Loosely based on the old Surrealist and Dadaist game The Exquisite Corpse, Graphic Intersections sets out to unite disparate artists in an interconnected photographic relay of images inspired by one another. We conceived of the project as a way to catalyze a system of response entirely rooted in unmediated visual reaction. In an age where imagery is so often arbitrated by language, we were interested in stripping all of that away and fostering a freer, more intuitive photographic experience. Each image in the sequence was directly influenced by the one preceding it. The participating photographers were given no contextual information about the image they were responding to, nor did know who had made it. All that remained was the artist’s own visual, emotional, intellectual or philosophical response to the photograph in front of them. This process continued until 20 unique images had been completed. Ultimately, Graphic Intersections was envisioned to propagate chance, or as the Surrealist’s put it, exploit “the mystique of accident”.
Below is an excerpt from the first Graphic Intersections sequence in the order it appeared. You can see the selection for Graphic Intersections v.02 here.