Tacita Dean

Tacita Dean , British b1965

Floh (German for flea)

Dean studied at Falmouth University and after her Artists Residency in Berlin finished in 2001 she continued to live there.

‘Her long-time preoccupation with serendipity , coincidence and unforeseen outcomes as a leitmotif for her artistic method , governed her wanderings through the street markets of Berlin and elsewhere , which produced a harvest of visual materials. These served as the basis of several works consisting of found images’ ( Rainbird ,p.9 )

Floh consists of informal snapshots found in flea markets by Dean that she then organised and curated into a book. It contains a mix of 48 colour and 109 b&w unrelated images .

Additionally limited edition digital prints from the book were available at an exhibition held in 2001at the Frith Street Gallery in London. The prints , like the photographs in the book , are ambiguous and open to interpretation. No text accompanies the unidentified photographs hence the original context remains unknown leaving the viewer free to conceptualise their own narrative.

Screen Shot 2016-04-13 at 19.23.34

Photographs are not only physical objects they also prompt speech but Dean states she wanted “to keep the silence of the flea market ; the silence they had when I found them;the silence of the lost object” . It is rather sad to contemplate who were the original owners of the abandoned photographs and why have they been discarded ? Imagine the stories they could they tell , which is precisely what the viewer is left free to do.

This is interesting essay —Mark Godfrey Photography Found and Lost :On Tacita Dean’s Floh HERE

References / Bibliography

Rainbird, S. (2005) Tacita dean: Berlin works: [published to accompany the exhibition Tacita dean: Berlin works, 8 October 2005 – 15 January 2006, Tate, st. Ives]. United Kingdom: Tate Gallery Publish.

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