Phantomwise 2002

Olympia, faciality and the punctal play of darkness — Ross Moore

Phantomwise (the exhibition title is drawn from a poem by Lewis Carroll) formed around a serendipitous event. The artist’s five year old daughter, trapped indoors by rain, and having just seen the Pocohontas video, put on an Indian Brave mask lying amongst the litter of playthings and insisted she be photographed. The result was the start of a series of collaborative portraits in which the use of half-masks, props and costumes (often as simple as a walking stick or a set of kid’s silk Chinese pyjamas) work together to create what the artist, in deference to the artfully staged Victoria photograph, calls tableau vivant but which, considered in terms of the performative, also constitute a kind of punctal death.… Continued