Angle 20 :Filicology

Grundt Johns, Andrea
Editorial: Multipress
Encuadernación: Paperback
Medidas: 2.00 x 15.00 cm

Andrea Grundt Johns’ photographs shuttle between
deconstruction and reconstruction. She works consistently with
the empty and transitory aspects of photography – as visual traces
of something that is vanishing. In Filicology she studies the fern.
Throughout history this useful plant has served a number of
purposes, including the making of glass and protection against
evil spirits and powers. Charred ferns were transformed into
crystals, and according to ancient folk belief fern seeds could
make you invisible. Burning fern leaves as incense can put you in
contact with the dead and the spirit world. Through references to
superstition and ancient knowledge, as opposed to the coldly
technical approach, a mythical framework is created around the
plant – spirituality and the cultic forces of nature trickle through.
Grundt Johns’ pictures have been described as “cameraless and
sculptural photography”, and she takes an intuitive and experimental
approach. The pictures in Filicology have been created among other
ways by colouring botanical paper with fern water. The characteristic
fan-shaped leaves of the fern spread out in compositions where
negative black areas are contoured indistinctly against light ones
like shadows. In other places almost imperceptible patches of colour
seem grafted on to the paper itself, with a characteristic patina. The
burnt ferns carries the ash with them. A number of these pictures
have a dark, heavy substantiality captured by Grundt Johns through
the use of the sensory contrasts of photography.

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