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Image credit Imi (after Ema descending stairs), 2010
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PublishedJune 22, 2012 at 02:32pm
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Hedy Ritterman

To know a veilColour Factory Melbourne, Photography, Victoria, Australia
Thursday June 7, 2012 - Saturday June 30, 2012 - Event ended.

In to know a veil, Hedy Ritterman combines portraiture with the appropriation of public commercial images and public art works, presenting them in oppositional contexts, allowing new interpretations and insights into the nature of photography.

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In our contemporary world the personal photograph has shifted into the digital sphere while the commercial photograph has become part of the urban environment. The billboard, rendered unremarkable due to its pervasiveness, is Ritterman’s muse, serving as a vital role in her exploration of the intent, context and physical reality of the image.

Images of youth, exoticism, femininity, sensuality and natural forms are perceived as beauty which in turn is used to evoke desires. By pointing the camera at a particular angle, from a particular distance, in a particular light, she reconstructs the perceived beauty used in the advertising genre into a new aesthetically considered photograph. The billboard’s image and its context of public space are transformed into a framed fine art print on a gallery wall, open to new meaning and evaluation. By appropriating these public images Hedy attends to the appearance and ‘the look’ of our time; the surface veil that both conceals and reveals contemporary reality.

Conversely, in Imi (after Ema, Nude descending the stairs) and From No Man’s Land (after Christian Boltanski), art- referential images are transposed into an advertising structure, the lightbox and billboard, respectively, to further the dialogue between the significance of the physical object and the reading of the image.

The conceptual link between these differing subjects is the veil; a layering of material relating to perceptions and constructions of feminine beauty and the image itself.
Hedy is a Melbourne based artist. Her most recent solo exhibition Preservation, was at the Monash Gallery of Art in 2011. She was shortlisted in the 2010 & 2012 Josephine Ulrick and Win Shubert Photography prize and the 2011 Olive Cotton Award.

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