Fuera de sitio (Out of site) – José de la Fuente – Santander

All images from Sequence of 18,802 Digital Images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art Online Collection (Photography, Images Available)

All images from Sequence of 18,802 Digital Images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art Online Collection (Photography, Images Available)

I’m happy to have new work in Fuera de sitio at José de la Fuente in Santander. The show looks at how art can approach new modes of temporality, something which I’m obviously concerned with in my work.

I’m showing Sequence of 18,802 Digital Images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art Online Collection (Photography, Images Available), which sequences the entire Metropolitan Museum of Art’s public domain photography collection in size order, from wide to narrow. I programmed a bulk image downloader to iterate through the online galleries and download all of the images.

Once I had all 18,802 images in a directory on my computer it was amazingly easy to re-order them in any number of ways, size, name, date (of download), all of which paid no attention to the things that had up until now been their main attributes, subject and authorship. What was happening instead was an algorithmic sorting. Once they were sorted it was relatively easy to name them incrementally and import them into video editing software as a sequence. It runs at 24 frames a second, some files were corrupted so there are blank spots.

Still from Sequence of 18,802 Digital Images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art Online Collection (Photography, Images Available)

Still from Sequence of 18,802 Digital Images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art Online Collection (Photography, Images Available)

I also produced two prints, one of all the landscape images in the same collection made semi transparent and layered over the top of each other so the images produce an average, and the same for the portrait images. What I was curious about is the different modes of temporality, between the static (like a photograph) and the fluid (like the video).

The image at the top is not in the show,  but is all 18,802 images from the met online collection copied one over the other.