Former Photography Lab, Key Colour, 117 2nd Ave East, Vancouver, 2009
50.8 x 40.6 cm
This edition debuted in conjunction with Scott McFarland’s solo exhibition at the Vancouver Art Gallery, October 3, 2009 – January 3, 2010. The image relates to a larger version of this work included in his exhibition.
Former Photography Lab, Key Colour, 117 2nd Ave East, Vancouver depicts an old photo lab with graffiti accumulating on its doors, and its awning showing traces of erased “Photo Lab” lettering. The faded signage is a reminder of the increasing obsolescence of analogue dark rooms with the advent of digital photography. In the context of McFarland’s practice which makes considerable use of digital techniques and hints at the constructed nature of photographs, this image of a disused photographic facility speaks to the history of a medium which is intertwined with claims to truth and attempts to accurately represent ‘reality.’
In depicting an analogue photo lab, McFarland’s image represents a facility associated with a democratic modern medium, intended to be available to the masses. As opposed to the larger, unique work in his solo exhibition, this smaller photograph was conceived to mimic its subject matter in its accessibility, offered as an unlimited edition.
Scott McFarland was born in Hamilton, Ontario and studied at the University of British Columbia where he received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1997. In a relatively short period, McFarland has mounted an impressive exhibition history that includes a solo exhibition at the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa and group shows at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Haus der Kunst, Munich; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. His work is in numerous national and international collections including National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa; Museum of Modern Art, New York; and Vancouver Art Gallery.