Representation offers a confusing and problematic component to seeing. Much like the allegory of In Plato’s Cave, experiencing imagery can uncover flawed reflections of the truth and urge one to understand the mechanics behind an allusion.
Photography and representation have been intertwined in an illusive state since the invention of the camera obscura. It is unarguably one of the mediums most dangerous and powerful attribute. As most viewers trust their eyesight to examine and understand the physical world, the same trust is often place onto a photograph as if the medium itself is directly connected to seeing.
Understanding what one observes is not unique to photography, nor does it only exist within the evaluation of imagery. Objects can be equally deceiving and at times more convincing than a photograph. Often described as authentic or original, our faith in objects is not far from the certainty needed to believe what is depicted in an image, continues to exists in real time beyond the moment the shutter was released.
The natural world can offer similar deceptions.
Pyrite, an iron mineral once used as a tool for igniting fire in Ancient Roam has similar complex properties as the photographic image. The minerals exterior surface is lustrous and metallic with a yellow hue. These qualities often and still confuse viewers to believe the mineral to be gold. The name Pyrite is derived from the Greek term (pyrites), meaning “of fire” or “in fire”, ultimately the tool needed to project shadowed imagery onto the dim wall in the dark cave.
The sculptures depicted in these photographs are drafted to resemble pyrite forms that naturally grow to model a perfect cube. As cave-like and futuristic as the cubes appear they reflect a non-human characteristic that masks them as an unnatural and complicated relic from underground. Made entirely of glass, these hand-made forms exist as 2D and 3D counterfeit artifacts, created to serve as placeholders to remind us that all things in the physical world are designed as reflections of being.
© Ben Schonberger 2013 - 2019