Labor Anonymous

(work in progress)

The art of photography has been persistently haunted by the image of human labor…. This haunting is more than a nightmarish parade of ghostly signifieds, but takes hold at the level of the ontology of the photographic sign itself. First problem: photography of work. Second and more fundamental: photography as work. Third problem: the confusion of the two (the imbrication of immanence and reference).
Allan Sekula. An eternal esthetics of laborious gestures.

 

 

 

  1. Photography of labor, photography as labor.
  2. Photography of factory work, up to eight hours per one single shot.
  3. Analog photography and analog printing.
  4. Labor photography as laboring time.
  5. Analog film as a physical trace of labor.
  6. Analog film as a physical trace of time.
  7. Photography as representation of labor.
  8. Photography as objectified labor.
  9. Photography as labor traces converted into things.
  10. Art objects as fetishized abstract labor.

 

 

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Installation view at Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation, Miami. 

 

By approaching photographs as artistic objects, Labor Anonymous seeks to emphasize the fetishistic nature of commodity production in its irreducible relationship with human labor. The project, aligned with a longstanding photographic tradition in connection to labor representation, is comprised of photographs, taken with large format black and white film and printed analogically, of toilers performing factory work. Utilizing special filters that make a single shot last from one to eight hours, these pictures are to be physicochemical traces of human labor time placed in a light-sensitive emulsion. They are meant to work as allegorical objects, namely, as reified labor in its abstract condition, and a heuristic disclosure of the principles of labor alienation and commodity fetishism. The process of circulation of objectified work culminates at the moment in which the artworks are presented to the spectator, where their nature of artistic things is thoroughly assumed.

 

 

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  1. Fotografías de trabajo, fotografía como trabajo.
  2. Fotografía de tiempo de trabajo fabril, hasta ocho horas por toma individual.
  3. Fotografía análoga e impresiones análogas.
  4. Fotografías de trabajo como tiempo de trabajo.
  5. Emulsión sensible como huella física del trabajo.
  6. Emulsión sensible como huella física del tiempo.
  7. Fotografías como representación del trabajo.
  8. Fotografía como trabajo objetualizado.
  9. Fotografías como rastro del trabajo hecho objeto.
  10. Objetos artísticos como trabajo abstracto fetichizado.