Ian Talbot: Retrospective – Strings :: Environmental Codes

Chapter 24 of the ongoing series Ian Talbot : Retrospective by British fine art photographer Ian Talbot.

Strings :: Environmental Codes

© Ian Talbot

“When all is said and done, I’m a maker of images – nothing more and nothing less.”Robert Mangold

Mangold’s quote seems to me to be entirely apt in relation to the image shown here. His work has often been linked with Minimalism though the link is somewhat tenuous. Simplicity and minimalist intention are two different things; the image here can be seen as minimal in its subject matter and simple in its execution but certainly not Minimalist.

This image is really about seeing. I don’t mean as in “caught my eye”, I mean “seen” as in noticed and observed over a period of time (it is actually the string pull for the kitchen blinds) and filed away as “something to make an image of” should there be a reason to do so. This may sound like nit-picking but it isn’t. I see many things, almost daily, that visually intrigue or delight me but I feel no urge to “record”. Merely to document my visual sensations has never been a particularly urgent need for me.

Directly above the string pull on the wall in my kitchen are several reproductions of 50s vintage Coca Cola ads, colourful and eye catching. On the rest of the walls there are other drawings, paintings, reproductions etc. Everywhere you look there are visually interesting kitchen artefacts etc. Yet when I sit in the kitchen it is such things as this simple arrangement of strings, and other like details, that most engages my attention. I’m not even entirely sure why…

    Ian Talbot

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