Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: abstract

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Double exposure. Detail, perforated metal plate. Image: Su Leslie, 2016. Edited with Snapseed and Pixlr.

The woman in front’s trolley got away from her on the ramp between the supermarket and the underground car-park. Nothing major, just the loud clang of metal on metal and a hasty putting away of the mobile phone claiming her navigational skills at the time.

This isn’t a post about texting while driving (even a supermarket trolley). That would be hypocrisy, since once the fuss had died down, I got my phone out.

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Cross-hatched perforated steel plate. Image: Su Leslie, 2016. Edited with Snapseed.

I’d noticed the metal plates attached to the walls — the ones she hit so loudly — and something about the simple cross-hatch pattern got me thinking about the artist Len Lye.

Born in New Zealand, Lye became one of the most influential and experimental artists of the twentieth century. He spent his lifetime pursuing the ‘art of movement’; the goal of which was “to affect people physically and emotionally, so that art became a full body experience … with flashing, dancing cinematography, or thunderous, oscillating metallic sculptures.” (1)

I visited the new Len Lye Centre at the Govett Brewster Gallery in New Plymouth a few weeks ago and hugely enjoyed the exhibition of kinetic sculptures and experimental films.

I was introduced to Lye’s work through his films, specifically in a Film Studies class I did with Professor Roger Horrocks at the University of Auckland. As well as being a superb lecturer, Prof. Horrocks is also an expert in Lye’s work — having been his assistant in the 1970s.

So my post for Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge is an experiment in abstraction, and an attempt to capture some of the sense of motion so central to Len Lye’s work.

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Pulsing imagined. Perforated metal plate. Image: Su Leslie, 2016. Edited with Snapseed and Pixlr.

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Join the dance. Double-exposure, perforated metal plate. Image: Su Leslie, 2016. Edited with Snapseed and Pixlr.

(1) The World of Len Lye, Govett Brewster Gallery website.

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11 thoughts on “Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: abstract

  1. Really, really enjoyed the results of your interpretation of close ups of the metal plates. The work of Len Lye reminds me of Annie Albers’ work. She did these gorgeous abstract weavings that were greatly influenced by the Bauhaus School, of which she and her husband were artists. Thanks so much for the introduction to Lye’s weavings. Happy Photo Challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Sally’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Challenger’s Choice (Abstraction at Longwood Gardens) (On Another Note, Exasperation Revealed) | Lens and Pens by Sally

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