The psychedelic result of combining microbes and photos
The project has for title ‘Impermanence’ and it is the visual result of the symbiosis between film matter and organic matter.
Seung-Hwan OH, a.k.a. Tonio Oh, works and lives in Seoul, where he was born and raised until he moved to New York, where he studied film and photography at Hunter College. His work and practice stems from his interest and approach towards other disciplinary thoughts and ideas, from philosophy to sciences.
My current work focuses on implementing microbial growth on film as a means to explore the impermanence of matter as well as the material limitations of photography.- Seung-Hwan OH
The process involves the cultivation of emulsion consuming microbes on a visual environment created through portraits and a physical environment composed of developed film immersed in water. As the microbes consume light-sensitive chemical over the course of months or years, the silver halides destabilize, obfuscating the legibility of foreground, background, and scale. This creates an aesthetic of entangled creation and destruction that inevitably is ephemeral, and results in complete disintegration of the film so that it can only be delicately digitized before it is consumed.
All pictures © Seung-Hwan OH, from his project Impermanence.