Mirrors, Mediums and Salt Lakes

Vice’s article about Australian photographer Murray Fredericks is right when it says he ‘intends to document the lake not just as a landscape, but as a medium in itself.’ The images they’ve picked out to accompany the interview are surreal and entirely beautiful things. I’ve seen the salt lakes in Bolivia, and well remember how they break your senses of distance and perspective. They are weird places, that challenge our assumptions about how we relate to space.

Where it misses a beat, however, is where it focuses on mirrors as signifiers only of vanity:

Our generation may not be as overtly savage as the queen, but we are arguably equally transfixed by our reflections. Social media is the ruler of our kingdom, and our filtered selfie camera is our magic mirror. We may not be killing our opponents, but many of us feel compelled to make sure our mug gets more “likes” than theirs.

Maybe it’s true. It probably is. It’s not the interesting thing about mirrors though. The symbology risks overtaking the artefact.

For me, the far more interesting thing is how they break space apart. Put two opposite each other and you create infinity. Put one in a room and strange things start to happen.

Vanity is an obvious, and topical reading. But I’ll always be fascinated by the fracture the reflection sits in.

Advertisements