Take a photo of a family member you don't know very well. | Laurel Nakadate | The Art Assignment | Summary and Q&A

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December 4, 2014
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The Art Assignment
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Take a photo of a family member you don't know very well. | Laurel Nakadate | The Art Assignment

TL;DR

Laurel Nakadate explores the theme of connecting with strangers through art and uses unconventional methods to capture portraits.

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Key Insights

  • 🥰 Laurel Nakadate's art revolves around the concept of connecting with strangers and the transformative effect of new relationships.
  • 😒 She uses unconventional methods, such as meeting strangers at night and DNA matching, to create her portraits.
  • 💦 Nakadate's work humanizes the experience of meeting people through the internet by emphasizing the personal connection found in shared DNA.
  • 🥰 Through her art, Nakadate explores the idea that every photograph is a certificate of presence, validating the existence of the subject and the viewer.
  • 💦 Nakadate's work highlights the importance of personal encounters and the significance of capturing the fleeting moments of connection through photography.
  • 🧑‍🎨 The artist embraces failure as a valuable learning experience and emphasizes the importance of seizing the moment to create meaningful art.
  • 🥰 Nakadate's "Star Portraits" series holds special significance as the beginning of her exploration into the art of meeting strangers and capturing their essence.

Transcript

[MUSIC PLAYING] SARAH: Today we're on the High Line in New York, and we're about to meet up with Laurel Nakadate, who for a number of years has explored how to connect with strangers through art making. She makes photographs, videos, and films, and throughout her career, has considered the complex give-and-take between those behind the camera and t... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: What is Laurel Nakadate's main focus in her art?

Laurel Nakadate is preoccupied with the idea of connecting with strangers and the transformative effect that new relationships can have. She explores this concept through various art forms, including photography and video.

Q: How does Nakadate create her portraits?

In her "Star Portraits" series, Nakadate meets strangers at night in remote locations to take portraits using only starlight, moonlight, and a single flashlight. In her current project, she uses DNA matching to find people related to her and photographs them.

Q: Why does Nakadate choose to meet people through DNA matching?

Nakadate sees meeting people through DNA as a way to bring the concept of meeting strangers into the real world and humanize the experience. It combines the use of the internet with the personal connection of sharing DNA.

Q: What is the purpose of Nakadate's challenge to the audience to photograph a family member they have not met?

Nakadate's challenge encourages the audience to explore the theme of connections and relationships through photography. By meeting and photographing a family member they haven't met, participants can experience the transformative power of new relationships.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Laurel Nakadate has spent her career exploring the concept of meeting strangers and the transformative power of new relationships.

  • Her early video works involved dancing and performing with men she had just met.

  • In her current project, Nakadate uses DNA matching to meet and photograph strangers who are somehow related to her.

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