Miranda Gavin – Talking about Documentary

In the interview with Miranda Gavin from Hotshoe Magazine the definition and framework of documentary photography is discussed. The question Miranda asks is whether the terms and vocabulary that are being used to define documentary photography are still relevant. My first response was that they still are, since together they form the framework from which the concept is developed and challenged. With the shift from the printed press  and analog photography to digital images and publications on the web Gavin explains that the wider availability to work with the medium and access to what is being done have changed the topics of documentary photography and resulted into more women becoming photographers.

Gavin continues to talk about how the boundaries between art photography and documentary photography are merging and gives an example of work that is considered art as well as documentary photography, depending on who is looking at it. She gives the explanation that the categories are merging into each other. I think that photography can be both at the same time, defined by the elements that define documentary or art photography. For example, paintings are certainly perceived as art, but also function very well as a documentation of society or religious beliefs of a specific time and place. The final definition of what a work is really depends on the viewers, which perceptions they have when viewing it and on which elements they’re focused.

What is documentary photography? (2016) Available at: https://vimeo.com/29752787 (Accessed: 17 August 2016).

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