OK – this exercise has actually made me angry. I can, perhaps, set aside the naivety of suggesting that we write a “press release” based on the two essays in the 2008 Brighton Biennial – ignoring the fact the most people have less idea how to write a press release that I’d have of how to photograph a war. But frankly any essay that asserts – with no supporting evidence – that the opening attacks by the coalition during the Irag War were staged for the camera needs to be taken with a pinch of salt so large it is essentially inedible. The remainder of my thoughts on this are going in my private notes.
Fortunately the second piece is an altogether more measured and thoughtful piece on “aftermath photography” as practiced by Norfolk and Ristelhueber and the ethical issues surrounding the “military sublime”. This bumps right up against many of the images at Conflict, Time, Photography and The Forensic Turn at Format 15. I’m not quite sure what I want to say about it at this stage so perhaps another time.