DJ Culture is a series of works constructed from photographs shot in and around Brick Lane in the East End of London, where a vibrant street art scene has grown, including Poster and Paste Up Art.
It takes its title from the Pet Shop Boys single of the same name, released in 1991. The song is about how as a modern society, we sample images, words and ideas from the past, very much in the same way a DJ samples and mixes audio to create new music.
I’m very interested in the idea of the layering of history through imagery. The work shares similar themes with the décollage ripped poster art of French artist Raymond Hains, one of the founders of the Nouveau réalism movement of the 1960s.
The work was created by photographing multiple images of the subject, then asking Photoshop to combine them to create a single image using the Photomerge function. By adjusting the parameters, the software would overlap and distort the single images as it tried to find a way to recreate the original photographed image. The faces within the images appear trapped by their reappropriation, constrained by the historical layers surrounding them.