Taking portraits of people entering his flat for a consecutive five days, experimental photographer Martin Zahringer created a lighting setup in his home and asked his flatmates, via chalkboard, to take their portraits - as he had decided to conduct it in complete silence. The invitation was then extended to his friends on Facebook which then led to a steady stream of up-for-it people coming into Zahringer's flat every day. The results of the portraits means they were of a very awkward and intimate nature as he wouldn't be able to chat to or direct them. In addition to this, because of the lens he used, Zahringer was rather too close for comfort to the people he was shooting - which may show in the final images...
Dazed Digital: The inspiration/starting point behind your exhibition? Martin Zahringer: I couldn't speak for six days after an operation on my vocal chords and the anticipated boredom and fear of losing touch, and my mind drove me to pester a few of my friends to come and let me shoot them in my studio. Come day 6 i had 50 portraits. It was an experiment. I wanted to see how that space between them and me felt if i can't say a word at all. It was awkward, for them more then for me.
Can you Recommend...
... One painting that everyone should see? Pembury Estate by Frank Laws
... The most incredible public sculpture ever made? The Milau Bridge in Southern France, not strictly public art, but it is amazing. Better.
... The most artistic sexual position? The Duck.
... Three ways in which art can save your life? Hide behind it, hide underneath it, hide next to it.
... The most inspiring artist ever to walk the earth? Canada. They direct videos. The one that is out now for icecream by Battles is amazing.
... The most challenging piece of work since Duchamp exhibited a toilet bowl? Hell...
... The most important element of Warhol's legacy? Commerciality!
... Three reasons why art is the new religion? That would be a terrible thing for art.
... One work of art that actually changed the world? Duchamp invented the toilet bowl, i think that made a real impact.
... The most interesting thing since breakfast? The worrying transgender guy with silcon breasts, who managed to make most of a jack daniels bottle dissappear in his anus, and then flicked the juice at the crowd.
Mute Shoot: Portraits by Martin Zahringer. 5th May - 31st May 2011; Print House Gallery, 18 Ashwin Streett, London E8 3DL