Ghosts large

Robert loved going to the movies and discussing films with friends afterwards. He was influenced by the look of films, by the cropping and lighting of images. He was fascinated by telling stories through pictures and the psychological effects suggested by different film techniques. But perhaps most importantly, Robert thought of cinema as a kind of mass religion or new popular mythology. He looked for ways of illustrating Roland Barthes’ idea that not just excellent samples of pop culture but the trash as well reveal the nature of people’s thought patterns and belief systems, and form the rituals by which these beliefs are affirmed.

The title Ghosts suggests superstition or a supernatural transference from screen to viewer, as if a mass hypnosis effect is in progress. This ironic take on romance and media changes as Robert studies film more closely during his illness and comes to appreciate how intense the film/ audience bond is at a time when the fine arts have largely lost touch with the general public. Robert begins using film techniques in his images and explores the theme of romance in a more direct fashion in subsequent work.


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