Consumed: stilled lives - Ffotogallery

Woolley, Dawn ORCID logoORCID: (2018) Consumed: stilled lives - Ffotogallery. [Show/Exhibition]


Consumed: Stilled Lives plays with the traditional concept of still-life painting, which grew in popularity in the 16th and 17th centuries. Often featuring silver plates, ornate glassware and expensive foodstuffs such as shellfish and exotic fruit, still life paintings became a fashionable way for the Dutch and Flemish to illustrate their wealth. When interpreted using emblematic symbolism the paintings represent a conflicting relation with material wealth. In response to this reading Woolley produces still-life objects that suggest contradictory relationships to contemporary consumer culture. Drawing on both definitions of the term ‘consume’ (to ingest and to purchase) she uses food still-life photography to represent different characters and positions in relation to capitalist society. What we eat and how we eat are symbols of our wider consumer habits. We are what we consume.

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