Artist's Talk for "Pictures of People"
For this recent show at the BALTIC, Muniz' work has been organised under the category of portraiture; an interesting art-historical claim to be sure. More than play with notions of the portrait, Muniz offers visitors a fun and accessible entry point into the contemporary discipline of visual studies. As a photographer, he remains quite conscious of the visual dilemma of our present culture. In a word, we suffer from saturation, a drowning in the sea of visual stimuli. Under such a burden, it seems the visual image has come to have less and less effect upon its intended target. For his work, Muniz has selected both those tired images of pop culture cliché and the touchstone monuments of art history in order to re-examine the way we interact with the visual image through a curious exploration of unorthodox materials. Freely playing with both scale and perspective in his compositions, he has utilised a host of materials ranging from toys, junk, food, dust, thread and even raw paint pigments. Muniz presents the quizzical masses with quite an eyeful; the question remains, however, can we be helped to actually see what we looking at back in the real world?Find out more about the artist and view his work here.