- ROBERT DAIGNEAULT'S
BELOW ARE COMMENTS SUBMITTED
- FROM VIEWERS ON ROBERT'S IMAGES
Dream- I dreamt I was at a garage sale. I found a box full of old photo albums. I didn't bring my glasses so what I saw was slightly blurry. I told the vender I couldn't see the photos properly so she handed me a box of old eye glasses. I tried a pair on that brought the photos into focus, but, the glasses were dirty with scratches on them. An amazing thing happened! When I looked at the photos through the eye glasses, parts of the photo I was looking at would be in focus and other parts would show a decayed texture. This means if I was looking at someone's face, parts of the face would be in focus and other parts of the face would show this decayed texture. This worked for all the photos, buildings, group shots, pets, scenery, etc.
Anonymous sent me this email, I find it very moving......I travel on my own, I keep occupied by drawing. I am in this strange place because I reject a lot of what I see as popular values. I really haven't a clue about the meaning of life, nor do I expect any rewards for living an honest loving life. It seems the raw experience is enough for me. Illusions of personal importance or being "seen" by others as a "success" has always seemed laughable to me. I have no children, nor existing parents, I have no "love object" and I exist comfortably. I make no excuses and feel no dedication to making this world better. In my prior existence, I was very committed and hard working for the betterment of this planet, now after many years the world is more polluted and being run by assholes like Bush. So, for me it's personal experiences and inward growth. My only prayer is that I don't fall in love again.
665- The people that lived in this area had been moved because of an oncoming storm. Their houses and belongings had been washed away except for a few things left behind on the beach. The man in the photo came back to visit the site were these people had lived.
All- I thought you might like this statement. ... The main difference is that, whereas photography still claims some sort of objectivity, digital imaging remains an overtly fictional process. As a practice known to be nothing but fabrication, digitization abandons even the rhetoric of truth that has been such an important part of photography’s cultural success. As the name suggests, digital processes actually return the production of photographic images to the whim of the creative hand (to the digits). For that reason, digital images are actually closer in spirit to art and fiction than they are to documentation and fact.
629- The Human Condition- always trying to improve ourselves, (climbing
stairs) but eventually arriving at a dead end.......... 654- Submerge
Yourself- Don't fight against nature- nature is where we have come from
to find peace within yourself, make peace with nature (no poisons on
the stupid lawn!)
John Sommer- Gallery House Sol
The most difficult art is that of infinite, which launches itself and risks itself, wandering on the path that it itself invents and that never returns to itself, whose leap is sustained only by its restlessness, exposed, exploring unceasingly another fragment of the earth, going forward without profit or help, always at the stage of being born, cheerful, in turmoil, tormented, twisted, torturing, emanating from the body's roots like birds taking flight all around the leaves of a tree.
All- You talked earlier about chance. I thought you might like this statement. ... In relating photographic chance to the idea that photographs can be found objects, unpremeditated slices of the world, the found object becomes the lost object regained, found objects are found precisely because they are unconsciously looked for.
686- When we got the picture framed the framer was interested in it and took a good look. She commented on it being very good and wondered why it wasn't signed. I told her I don't know, just figured you were modest ......Hi Elsie, You asked why I didn't sign the print you have? It's signed on the back- so I'm not modest at all- the reason I do this is- the print is so small I don't want my long name to take away from the print. It's signed... Robert Daigneault 686... I title each print I do with a number....Bob
All- I have 2 short questions.
- (1?) I'm an artist and I always give my work titles. When people look at my work the title gives them something to talk about or maybe it helps them understand the work.
- Why don't you give your work titles?......
- On my web page you'll see...... "Send me your comments. Include the number of the image and write a few words about it. It can be a story, poem, criticism, whatever you like."...... If I titled my work people would write about the title and not the image. I like it when a comment makes me- see, think, argue, contemplate, reflect, take in a new view, or says something I can't imagine. Here's an example- I have a photomontage that is to me totally negative. To my surprise, I've received a couple of emails that found the montage a positive experience. I guess you could say I'm working in reverse because- it's not me explaining the meaning of my work, it's you. As far as I'm concerned, what you say about my work is far more interesting because I already know what I'm thinking...... so for now I don't want to come out of the closet..................
- (2?) Do you find computer art gimmicky?......
- I think I've answered this earlier but I'll have another go at it. I'm not the Ann Landers of computer art problems. Over one hundred years ago, a number of European writers described the spontaneous art done by patients in mental hospitals. This seemingly irrepressible urge to make art out of any available materials confirms the compelling power of artistic expression to reveal our inner experience. I think the computer can help to free up our anxieties around the idea of making art and experience new ways of doing it. The requirements for participation are no longer based on skills, education, technique, experience, age, gender, race or religion. If you can afford to buy a computer, the software, a camera, you're in business......It's wonderful walking around taking photos with the idea that subject matter is everywhere and you don't need to spend hours drawing each subject you find. It's just click and you're on to your next subject. Keep all your experiences in this image box and when you get home, open it and remember what you saw or felt or imagined...... This is what I believe- The pressures and demands of an expected result must go. We need to re-enter the present by the simple act of being spontaneous. Intuition guides us. Trusting the flow that comes naturally is the magic of creation. The hidden, the mysterious, the sacred from within are revealed. Old patterns break. The natural movement of creation becomes part of our life. Passion sets in......
- To answer your question- "Do you find computer art gimmicky?" I guess I would say that's up to you.
All- I'm sure your photos begin with reality, but uses reality as a point of departure, operating beyond the conscious, in a process turning reality into dream images.... Love your work!
Dream Portrait- I'm standing on a rock overlooking a large lake. I'm looking at the horizon line- the water is calm, the clouds are all black along the horizon line. At some point the clouds start to lift and the sun breaks through like a big ball of fire. Out of the centre of the sun comes about a 100 little boats speeding toward me.
All- I have a question about your work. Are your photomontages a new idea because of the computer or an old idea because photomontages were being done over a 100 years ago? Is there a new idea in your work I'm missing? Otto. ..... Hi Otto, It seems to me that the preoccupation of many artist is the invention of new forms or schools of art. Art must constantly change and reinvent itself or it is considered pointless or dead. The way I look at it is- if I feel something it doesn't matter if the style is new or old. Take lovemaking- its been going on since the beginning of time. We take part in it because we feel something from it. Imagine if someone said- you can't make love anymore because you're expressing yourself in a dead style- you must invent something new. If that was to happen, love making would be in the same mess a lot of art is in. Maybe a kiss is just a kiss!
Short- Art Biography, In 1958 The Art Gallery of Hamilton granted him a scholarship to the Ontario College of Art in Toronto. He's worked in oil, acrylic, water colour, drawing, print making, collage, and photography. His work has been exhibited in many galleries through the years such as The Toronto Art Gallery, Art Gallery of Hamilton, MacDonald Stewart Art Centre Guelph, The Pollock Gallery Toronto, Albert White Gallery Toronto, Mitchell Gallery Toronto, Ellen Burka Gallery Toronto, Sax Gallery Toronto, Gallery House Sol Georgetown, Meta Gallery Sault Ste. Marie, Presswerk Editions Toronto- putting out a box set of etchings 'Brides of the Stream', based on the poetry of Joe Rosenblatt. He's done many posters such as the 'Guelph Spring Festival' poster for the 1983 season, and his work is in many private collections. From 1960 to 1980 he was a freelance magazine/book illustrator in Toronto. He created book covers for Pierre Trudeau's 'Approaches to Politics', Margaret Atwood's 'Procedures for the Underground', record jackets for The Orford String Quartet, The Montreal Symphony, The Mendelssohn Choir, illustrations for The Toronto Star, Toronto Life, Imperial Oil, The Star Weekly, Laura Secord, portrait commissions of Jean Marchand, Fergie Jenkins, etc.
Bob: will comment on other apparitional montages. For starters:......
- #629/ This is a photograph of dream ascending a staircase. An apparition is there. I can not see him. Neither can you. But I sense an emanation going up those short steps to the landing. But once on the landing there is a wall but no exit or entrance to that landing. It begs the question: is the viewer to press his mind against that wall and hope it will open into another domain where the staircase continues to climb? What is disturbing in the photograph in sepia is that it demands the order of symmetry. Nothing is out of place and there is a stark simplicity in the sameness, like Daigneault intended, perhaps unintentionally ---or intentionally----to demand of the viewer's eye and intellect to walk up those steps and once having reached the landing to touch the wall and feel other presences asking the same questions on the other side of that wall. I think a dreamer shot this photograph and he is on the other side......
- #654: A man has just drowned. What we see is his apparition. His ectoplasm is bald. The drowning happened at a lake. The drowning man is facing a rippling body of water and it is evening. But is it evening or is it eternity? This drowning victim refuses to turn around. Perhaps he has no face? Does it really matter? He is a ghost now. Does that matter? Perhaps he enjoys his ethereal state. It can be boring to be so dully corporeal---another person on the beach facing eternity. I think I know the identity of that man. He lives on my street, or he used to. The water welcomes him back into realm. I think the bald man has just drowned......
- Joe Rosenblatt
ALL- Do you call your work art? C. R. ---- Hi, C. R. you're back! ----
No I don't call my work art. I call what I do- an experiment or
something like that. It's too hard dealing with all those art experts
out there. From age 10 onward the art experts have told me- you're an
artist, you're not an artist. The art experts have asked questions- will
your art last the test of time? will the art experts let you have a
show? will your art sell? will the art experts give you a grant? is your
art important to the art community? etc. Art will always be connected
closely and intimately with those who are in the know and have the power
and bucks to prove it. The artist job is making collectibles and
decorations for wealthy people. It's always been that way. ---- By the
fragility that was always there, it really doesn't matter that an old
monk put together insects and the Annunciation all in one panel. ----
Freedom of expression. ---- The meaning is in the eye of the beholder.
ALL- Wowie, those are gorgeous photomontages. Back to you later.
622- I was having a pleasant time on the internet when one of your
images came up. Image 622 hit me hard. It was the reflection of a woman
in a window walking away that completely ruined my day. A short time ago
the love of my life left me. The last memory I have of her is her
reflection in a restaurant window walking away never to be seen again.
Your woman in the window looks exactly like her. Would you mind telling
me where you took this photo?
662- I love 662- I enjoyed viewing all your work on the
art in guelph page, but 662 stood out to me. I am a
musician. I don't have immediate plans for releasing
an album right now, but when I do I would love to use
662 as an album cover. I also would like a print of it
if that's possible. How much do these go for? I am
unsigned right now, and living in Niagara on the Lake.
I'm 21. I play some very inspirational, melodic songs.
Your image would be wonderful for the front of my
album. If I release one independently, or
commercially, I would love the honour of having your
art grace my art.
Let me know what you think. Take care Have fun And don't forget to pray
JOEL. v. V.
- 663- I'm sorry. My last email in regards to your work, I
said I loved 662 to bits, but I really love 663 and
want it for my CD cover. I think I'm going to begin
production for my CD soon. I've decided to release one
I think. Let me know if I can use your art as my
cover. The CD will be entitled "Eleven On Coach Dr.",
and has eleven songs that have brought me to the place
I am now. Your art "663" really captures an emotion
that I think a lot of the songs for this album exude. I
think the combination of looking at 663 and
hearing some of my tunes will well a spring of passion
in the listener. Please let me know.
Take care Have fun And don't forget to pray.
JOEL v. V.
ALL- love your work. i was looking at some of your work on-line and i
really like it. i am moving back to Guelph and buying a house and would
like some pieces for my new home. please contact me with samples and
Why do you do photomontage, what's in it for you? C. R.
.....Why- I like going on photo walks to find subject matter. The
trouble is, the best photos go by me so fast I miss them, or I see
something marvelous when I'm in a car speeding by or I'm standing in
front of one great shot without a camera. I have no idea what I'm going
to photograph. It's more fun that way. Putting the montage together can
be very free and spontaneous or slow. Some I've worked on- are never
finished. I work with no preconceived idea... The problem with
photomontage is you see it everywhere because of digital technology.
There is so much transformed imagery around- in art, movies, advertising
etc. Most people don't look because there's just too much. They're
suffering from many many visual hangovers- never mind looking for a
hidden meaning in some small photomontage... The camera is a great
gathering tool for found objects and the nice thing is you leave things
alone without disturbing them... Check this out! The first photographer
to become known for the artistic use of combination printing was the
Swedish artist Oscar Gustave Rejlander (1813-75). Trained as a painter
he turned to photography and became well known for pictures using both
double exposure and combination printing... Beware, when the fever
strikes, it hits you hard and there's no going back. You may never be
able to look at anything again without thinking of a way to incorporate
it into something else... I'm aiming toward a mode of impossible vision
or visual mazes or puzzles which intrigue the eye, that captures not
things but light from reflecting surfaces that fade in and out like
ALL- Freedom of imagination - everything is allowed - figurative and
abstract at the same time - shapes and textures existing in some form
of harmony - political, social, ethical and other motives can be used,
but only as forms of delirium - it is normal to share ideas with others,
but solitude and isolation is what I feel from your work.
616- It looks like a dike, solarized, a reversed image. Tree reflections
have been moved to the centre pool. I like the idea of the partition.
It's like a canal. I see a river or maybe a flooded road. The
reflections are transparent- you can see right through them. There are
two levels of dichotomy that seem like Heaven and Hell. Maybe that's too
pretentious. I especially like the canal shape. You could be a control
freak. The more I look at this print- I take it back- you are a control
654- This head is very sublime looking off into the ocean. I feel there
are many art references. The strongest reference is the German romantic
visionary painters. The Painter Friedrich comes to mind...
Gareth Lichty, Leeds, England.
ALL- Your photomontages feel to me like the Inner Landscape that
reflects the dreams that express our lives, the dreams that create our
Rachael Numidia, Sault Ste Marie. Ont.
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