Robert Besanko's essential isolation as an artist has led to the evolution of a personal and poetic vision. One can sense in his fascination with simplified forms and composition a distinct shift away from realism towards something other-worldly - an effect accentuated by the subtle textural quality of the now obsolete Kodalith paper he used in the printing process.
Besanko's highly-aestheticised images of women are typical of his work from the 1970-80s. While they are sensual and sensitive studies, a strange and intentional spatial ambiguity implicates the viewer within the photographic act. The artist has suggested in an interview that:
'you are aware of what the image can become when you look at the subject. The signature is the lyrical line - the otherness - and the intimacy. I strive for the essence… but more as well. The eroticism is the humanity, if you do not deny it.' (The Age, 2 August 1988)
Nanette, back of woman, shadows and moles [descriptive title]
gelatin silver photograph on Kodalith paper
33.1 x 48.5 cm image; 40.4 x 50.4 cm sheet
Signature & date
Signed and dated l.l. sheet, ink and u.l. verso, pencil "Robert Besanko 1976". Dated u.r verso, pencil "..1985"
Not on display
Shown in 2 exhibitions
Referenced in 1 publication
Judy Annear, What is this thing called photography?, Sydney, 1999. no catalogue numbers