Title of artwork: Familieportret 2 Date of completion: 2008 Medium: Photographic print Dimensions: 87cm X 111cm (Unframed dimensions)

The exhibition L’Origine du monde – this is not a porn song curated by Paul Boulitreau was the 2010 installment of Aardklop’s Guest Curator initiative.

Boulitreau requested to include Familieportret 2 in the exhibition, along with new works that would engage with curatorial theme. The former being the infamous Sasol New Signatures prizewinner in 2008, had had its fair share of mileage to say the least, and I was reluctant to flog that horse one more time. In the end it worked really well in the context of the exhibition.

Two new works were to make part of the exhibition, but because the space was altered before the advent of Aardklop ‘Artist’s toil ‘could not be installed, and only ‘Impremature’ was exhibited.

Front view

back view of artwork

Title of artwork: Impremature Medium: Readymade aided (Exposed disposable camera) Dimensions: 64mm x 115 mm x 32mm Number of pieces: 1 or 27 (see work description)

Work description:

Inspired by Marcel Duchamp’s ‘L.H.O.O.Q.’ (Elle a chaud au cul.), the title ‘Impremature’ is an idiosyncratic linguistic substitution called an Eggcorn, which is similar to a mondegreen.

An eggcorn is an idiosyncratic substitution of a word or phrase, in this case, with a similar or identical sounding word or phrase in the speaker’s dialect. From this a new and unintended meaning is attributed to the original word or phrase, which is still plausible in the same context (e.g. “on the spurt of the moment” instead of “on the spur of the moment” or “old-timers’ disease” for “Alzheimer’s disease”).

An eggcorn is not a folk etymology, but rather the usage of an individual rather than an entire speech community (like pornography is generally for private consumption). The word itself is not a malapropism, because “egg corn” and “acorn” are really homonyms in a vernacular linguistic sense.

Impremature is an eggcorn for imprimatur. An imprimatur (from Latin, “let it be printed”), refers to the declaration authorizing publication of a book. An example of Impremature as eggcorn is:

“It’s one thing when homosexuals design moral views around their sexual preferences, another thing entirely when constitutional lawyers give them the impremature of constitutional legitimacy by throwing out anything based on religion ” (catholic.com forum, July 20, 2009).

Concerning the difference between erotica and pornography, the former is generally seen as being suggestive – an allusion to the act, whereas the latter is an explicit portrayal of the act. This work, Impremature, functions on the suggestion of what might be exposed on the film. Should the photographs be developed and printed the art object – the disposable camera, will be destroyed thus shifting the nature of the work from the erotic (the suggestive) to the pornographic.

The exposures on the disposable camera however employ a stratagem by means of abstraction and cropping, containing distorted images of mundane objects or situations mixed in with abstracted distortions of actual pornographic images, which are indiscernible. Here the title also hints at the possibility of disappointment.

RELATED LINKS: Sasol New Signatures 2008 Winners

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