Clare Strand exhibition at CPIF.
The solo exhibition of new work by Clare Strand, titled The Discrete Channel with Noise, features photography, painting, machinery and sound installation. The works on display are set in our
time when the misinterpretation, mismanagement and misrepresentation of information - whether deliberate or accidental - has an ever-increasing and overwhelming effect on our everyday life. These failures of communication can lead to minor confusion, fantastic revelation or global outrage, depending when and where they occur.
“You photograph something then the photograph is split up in to millions of tiny pieces and they go whizzing through the air, then down to your TV set when they are all put together in the right order” Mike Teavee, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl, 1971
Mike Teavee’s experience is one of the starting points for Clare Strand’s exhibition. The precocious character explains the process of transmitting a photograph. However, what Mike fails to foresee are the complications and disruptions that can occur in the act of transmission. When Mike transports himself via ‘Wonka Vision’ he is indeed broken into a million pieces, but when put back together again he is a tenth of his original size.
Over the course of her research residency in Autumn 2017 at the CPIF, Strand asked her husband to choose images from her archive and apply an agreed grid. He would then communicate the sequence of numbers relating to the tonal code of each photographic element on the grid. When received
by Strand, she methodically painted the code on the matching large-scale grid she had drawn in
her studio. Strand had also taken her lead from Claude Shannon’s information theory, as well as George H. Eckhardt who, in his (pre- internet) 1936 publication Electronic Television, discusses the potential for transmitting a coded photograph from sender to receiver via telegraph to produce a fair representation of the original image. The result of this ambitious painting experiment is displayed in the exhibition, along with other related works.