For our advanced photography class we formed groups to “stage” a photo. For inspiration, our instructor Senseney Stokes introduced us to the work of Sandy Skoglund an American photographer and installation artist. The Bio below is paraphrased from Wikipedia.
Skoglund creates surrealist images by building elaborate sets or tableaux, furnishing them with carefully selected small children and other objects, a process of which takes her months to complete. Finally, she photographs the set, complete with actors. The works are characterized by an overwhelming amount of one object and either bright, contrasting colors or a monochromatic color scheme.
One of her most-known works, entitled Radioactive Cats, features green-painted clay cats running amok in a gray kitchen. An older man sits in a chair with his back facing the camera while his elderly wife looks into a refrigerator that is the same color as the walls. Another image, Fox Games has a similar feel to Radioactive Cats and is also widely recognized. A third and final oft-recognized piece by her features numerous fish hovering above people in bed late at night and is called Revenge of the Goldfish. The piece was used as cover art for the Inspiral Carpets album of the same name.
Skoglund has recently completed a series titled “True Fiction Two”, meticulously crafted to assimilate the visual and photographic possibilities now available in digital processes.