Ex. 5.6: Context and meaning

I had to make a sketch of how I’d ideally like to see the photographs from my fifth assignment in a gallery space. For me, the ‘white cube’ has always been my ideal palette for art showings. This work would be no different:


Ideally, I would like my sets (of 6 or 9 prints) to be unframed- perhaps mounted on board? That helps join the sets together; there’s nothing in between them then. I’m still unsure on print size- that’s something I will be thinking about during the work.


I read John A. Walker’s “Context as a Determinant of Photographic Meaning”. I’ve summarised his key points as follows:

  • Location affects context.
  • Images are re-contextualised when the location is changed.
  • The way that an image is framed affects the way it comes across.
  • The viewer can also be influenced by what an image is juxtaposed against.
  • The emotional resonance of the viewer to the image can be altered depending on how it is circulated or what the intended use is.
  • Depending on their status in society and their relationship with the subject, different viewers can have different responses.
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