When do we start calling it “a picture”
or stop calling it “a picture” —
I think this is still a picture.
Where is the essence of a picture?
This is a question that I have been asking myself for the past few years, as opportunities to view pictures on digital device displays through social networking sites have become overwhelmingly common. Does it exist only in the actual so-called “real thing” of the work? What is the difference between an image displayed on a display and a “picture”?
Exhibition of “Picture” was held from April to June, 2020 during the growing COVID-19 pandemic. The initial concept of which was to exhibit Koji Shiroshita’s artworks at a gallery, each of the painted works was shot and printed, referring to them as “pictures”.
Through the process of shooting, printing and exhibiting what he painted, he hoped to raise the following questions:”Where is the ‘essence’ of a picture? Does it only exist in a physical work of art?
However, upon the Japanese government’s declaration of a “state of emergency,” he had to shift the venue of the show from the gallery to online. By unintentionally forcing the viewers to view the through screens, he ended up asking his audience about the place where the essence of pictures exists.
Given that the “essence” of a picture is something applied to a medium, or a support, with paint, the “Picture” releases their “essence” from that.
Since then, he has continued to create and present the works of “Picture” during the pandemic, and the exhibition “Picture” has been touring around Japan, and at the same time, the online exhibition has been touring to explore the essence of picture.
This time, “Picture #017” is a work that exists only as data, without the physical work of a print.
Is this a picture or a photograph? Is it an artwork or just data?