05.11.2012 in19:55 in Portraits -->
Madison (1974) uses photography as a medium to explore the illusion of beauty, visual (il)literacy and the (concept of) truth and simulation in today’s social propaganda infused society.
Initially focussing on fashion photography, his focus shifted to a new and much darker series of portraits called ‘Beauty is the Beast’, an examination of real world beauty versus artificial beauty and corporately induced vanity or insecurity. In the process Madison discovered a ‘Beast that menaces in unglamorous ways’*. (*paraphrased from cultural theorist Sianne Ngai).
To make more critical observations about various complex issues regarding truth and simulation in today’s sea of information, Madison is currently working on ‘Claustrum Corporis Vol. I: Simulacra’ (‘The Body Prison Vol. I’). This art project is heavily influenced by Vilem Flusser’s ‘Towards a Philosophy of Photography’ as well as Jean Baudrillard’s hyperreality theory.
While Flusser argues that people are visually becoming more and more illiterate and are having trouble seperating truth from synthetic images, Baudrillard claims that we are living in a world entirely disconnected from any kind of reality in which everything has been replaced by symbols and representations.
The Simulacrum fascinates Madison because it encompasses the image as well as the illusion or delusion. The real is the unreal. It raises interesting questions in relation to the medium of photography, particularly about the absence of truth or reality in it.
sim·u·la·crum noun \?sim-y?-?la-kr?m, -?la-\
1. An image or representation of someone or something.
2. An unreal, flawed or false semblance of someone or something.
Madison was born and raised in the Netherlands and studied graphic design at the Academy Of The Arts and photography at the Photography Academy.