I think of cameras, along with photographs, as cultural artifacts. In the same way that an anthropologist can look at jewelry or clothing to learn about the culture that created those things, the design and function of a camera can tell us about the culture that created it. Whereas artistic media such as painting, sculpture, and theater have multiple origins from multiple cultures, photography is unique among all forms in that it is of solely European origin.
By modifying and redesigning cameras, I intend to suggest what photography might look like if it had emerged from a different cultural context. Using an entire strip of film as one image is an attempt to connect photography with the flattened perspective one saw in Asian and Middle-Eastern painting, before the introduction of linear perspective.
Kwabena Slaughter works in and between photography, sculpture, video and performance. He received an MFA in 2001 from the University of Illinois at Chicago . Since graduating Kwabena has been making his own work, stage-managing for a clown school, dancing with a trapeze-dance company, and teaching sculpture at the university level. His writing on aesthetics has been published in the journal “Philosophy and Social Action”. He was an artist in resident at CPW in August 2006.