Kinda makes you go “What. The. Frak.” doesn’t it? Every now and again a photo gets vomited up from the Internet without any context attached, and sometimes it’s just sheer luck if you manage to figure out what the heck is going on and why. Difficult one, isn’t it? It could be something staged. But the sheer randomness of what’s going on isn’t helping you make sense of the photo. Trust me, I’ve tried. And although I’ve seen this photo a couple of times, it’s the weird kind of image that either stays with you and haunts you, or despite your best efforts to make sense of it, you can’t so you forget. What IS that thing, anyhow?? It’s not a deformed human or anything, is it??
Ok, I’ll put you out of your misery. Personally, I never understood artists in this day and age, and Charlie White is no exception. I’m a man of words, not images, which explains why I’m a writer, not a photographer. In any event, the above photo is from a set called “Understanding Joshua”:
Understanding Joshua is a series of photos of a puppet meant to represent “complete fragility manifest in a body,” placed in various situations related to human relationships.
Another article states:
Using a humanoid puppet he calls “complete fragility manifest in a
body,” White presents human frailty through a fictional character, much
as a novelist might. [...] (H)is puppet, called Joshua, helps him to explore the themes of male
self-image and self-loathing. White places Joshua in a series of
vulnerable situations — at a cocktail party or a lover’s house — and
photographs the scene.
What this actually means is anybody’s guess, but the entire photoset (some NSFW) is bizarre. Which is, I suppose, what modern artists aim for.
So, does anyone want to explain to me what Mr White is trying to communicate with these photos?