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Joyce Carol Oates

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Photography is storytelling.

Name: Daniel Boetker-Smith
Hometown: Melbourne, Australia
Style of photography: There are no more photographic genres.
Type of camera(s): Linhof 5×4, Mamiya 7II, Canon 5D mkII

What gives you inspiration?

I think what inspires me most is the idea that photography can be (to paraphrase Miwon Kwon) about ‘queries rather than explanations’.

What are your influences?

Alessandro Imbriaco, Michael Wolf, Tim Hetherington, Cyprien Galliard, Edgar Martins, Raphael Dallaporta, Doug Rickard, Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin, Gerard Byrne, An-My Le, Clare Richardson, Paul Graham, Walid Raad, Taryn Simon, & Chris Killip.

Why did you choose these photos?

This project sees Australia’s greatest River, the Murray, as a site of old and new narratives intermingling. These photos use the river as both the subject and a metaphor for storytelling – this is a landscape in flux (politically, environmentally, and spiritually), in the River there is no strata of memory, there are no layers to be peeled back or dug up; this is documentary photography that accepts opacity, that seeks out the partially glimpsed, the submerged, the calm and the tumultuous existing together. These four images are the ones I think achieve the above most succinctly.

What does photography mean to you?

Photography is storytelling – complex, factual, poetic, contradictory, manipulative, beautiful, ugly, metaphoric, fictional and true simultaneously.  I am inspired by storytellers like Jorge Luis Borges, W.G. Sebald, David Mitchell, Paul Auster and Joyce Carol Oates.


Copyright reserved by Daniel Boetker-Smith

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