A Close Up of a Large Rock, I Think
Sebastian Stadler’s book work A Close Up of a Large Rock, I Think combines the artist’s photographic work L’apparition (2015–2019) with text generated by automated methods of indexing.
Each of the images, whether single or in a series, is a double exposure composition: a relatively generic scene or location is merged with a digital texture or surface. This combination sometimes punctures the image; on occasion it barely makes the viewer aware of the artifice of the reproduction. The photographs are combined with two forms of text: either a tentative description, like the book title, or what reads like an unmoored quotation. Both have been generated or sourced by an image-recognition algorithm that Stadler has employed in other works; this has been fed the images of L’apparation. The algorithm first presents its findings with the modest addendum ‘I think’. In a second step this has been cross-referenced with a huge text database, the Project Gutenberg digital library, in order to source unrelated quotations that accord with the image content identified. A screen-printed mylar cover around the publication further articulates the image-layering process.
Texts by Marco Poloni and Nadia Veronese. Printed mylar jacket with flaps.