SPOTLIGHT: Robin Cracknell

Artist Robin Cracknell was born in India, raised in America and after spending some time in Milan as a fashion photographer moved to London in 1987. His transition to London and the unexpected changes of his life, also led him to a change in his photographic path.

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Custody (version) by Robin Cracknell
© Robin Cracknell

Intending to document his son’s precious childhood moments, Cracknell at first wanted to explore the timelessness of photography in its ability to stop time and to immortalise its subject. However, he soon noticed that the pictures acted more like mirrors that reflected back his own childhood, realizing that they constituted of his own self-portraits.

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Acid Summer by Robin Cracknell
© Robin Cracknell

This arguably urged Cracknell to attempt to free his photographs from all the sentiment and memory that childhood pictures frequently portray. Like philosopher Roland Barthes indicates in his book Camera Lucida, 1981 ‘Whether or not the subject is already dead, every photograph is this catastrophe.’ In other words instead of immortalising moments, photographs are there to make us feel what we no longer have and remind us what we lost.

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Memory by Robin Cracknell
© Robin Cracknell

 In drying up his reality from sentiment and emotion Cracknell succeeds in imprisoning the loss and melancholy that photographs portrait. His technique of combining traditional film and cinematography as well as the use of text and drawing results in producing formless narratives that add voice to his stills.

For more information on Robin Cracknell, check out his website here.

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