To express a final definition of my work is impossible, except that it is a method of open and renewed experience having different results presented within certain dogmatic boundaries.
My practice is a continual and evolving enquiry with the premise that relationships to reality are unique to every individual and should not be assumed to be shared.
The presentations of specific works are records of infections on reality of my worldview. In my relationship to subjects, I discuss that the foundation of all persona (both of photographer and subject) is reliant on an interpretation of the world influenced by forces within but crucially beyond awareness.
Photography as realism is the perfect paradoxical tool to communicate complex relationships with reality. My interest in the photograph is less as truthful record but more as a transparent, subconscious autobiographical statement of the point of intellectual and emotional development.
Project development is unplanned beyond a starting point and final presentations invariably bear no resemblance to any preconceived notion of a final product. The works of greatest value develop in parallel to other more certain and less successful paths of enquiry. Many final presentations are developed, distanced from the moment of conception and may not appear for months or years after initial recording. Projects are continually revisited and edited through the lens of new progress and awareness, throwing light on and illustrating narratives irrespective of the origin.
If there is an objective that relates to audience it is partly to share my dislocation of understanding, de-prioritizing and challenging the foundations that define reality on our behalf. I believe that in accepting there is a wider reality experience (existing in multiple parallels to our own) we can engage with more empathy with others.
(1) Farina, Gabriella (2014) Some reflections on the phenomenological method. Dialogues in Philosophy, Mental and Neuro Sciences.
Ansett’s images are in permanent and private collections including the National Portrait Galleries of London and Canada, the Bibliotheque Nationale de France and the Smithsonian. He won The Arte Laguna Prize13 and Grand Prix de la Decouverte in 2013. He received a gold award at Prix de la Photographie 2011 and was awarded 1st prize at the Moscow International Foto Awards 2014. His images have appeared 11 times in the National Portrait Gallery Portrait Prize exhibitions and he has shown at the Royal Academy, London.
Mother & Child
As children our reason for existence is defined by recognition from our primary caregiver, all personal experience has less value without it. As we grow and become adult, we learn to experience the world for ourselves but all rationalisation is inescapably connected to early memory.
The mother as primary caregiver is both present and absent in the adult, following us through life as moral arbiter in our engagement with the world. We continually seek out and relive this affirmation and rejection of our actions learned in childhood.
Using the example of infantile separation from my biological mother, I discuss that all individual development and our relationship to reality is constructed from unique experiences that satiate needs triggered by unconscious memory.
These images of mothers and babies were created by forming compositions in camera in the moment, deciding the distance of the mother from the infant, recording my emotional response to a pre-verbal and unconscious separation memory.
Are You My Mother Project