Zac Langdon-Pole’s projects often take their point of departure in social structures of representation and organisation in order to question how and for whom such structures are posed. His current research relates specifically to the regions of Southeast Asia and the South West Pacific, and is centered on the mythology and historical cultural exchange of the so-called ‘birds of paradise’ from Papua New Guinea. His interest lies in how within procedures of cultural exchange the loss of, or transposing and translating of information can itself be a process of formation. Two ideas that are currently helping to inform his research are Walter Benjamin’s notion of ‘the wish image’ that stands at the intersection of materialism and mythology and Peter Mason’s explanation of the process of ‘exotification’, in his book Infelicities. This is the idea that the exotic is not something that exists prior to its ‘discovery’ but rather is formed in the very act of discovery itself.
More information about Zac Langdon-Pole here.
Image credits: Zac Langdon-Pole, My Body… (Brendan Pole), 2015, 297 individual photographs, each photograph 15 x 10cm overall dimensions variable Station Gallery, Melbourne, 2015. Courtesy of the artist.