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James Allan

St Joseph's College, Hunters Hill

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HSC year
Expressive form
Artist’s statement

Mirage is a series of digital photographs that investigates ideas of real and imagined landscapes. Through the use of symbolism and by evoking the senses this exploration discloses landscapes as both place and experience. The process of shooting through a diffuser of convex glass creates a ghostly presence that takes you into an ethereal world. This practice allows for the collision of photography and painting as expressive forms; they are as much photographs as they are paintings. The series references Chinese Zen landscape paintings of the Southern Sung School. The artist Gerhard Richter influenced my approach to photography, blurring boundaries between painting and photography.

Influencing artists: Gerhard Richter, Hiroshi Sugimoto

Collection connections

Allen suggests that his work considers landscape as both place and experience. Do you agree? Describe his approach to landscape and the effect he has created in this body of work.

Gerhard Richter is a strong influence on Allen’s art practice. Research Richter’s body of work and identify the elements that are evident in Mirage. How has blurring the characteristics of painting and photography added another layer of meaning to the work?