Emerging Photography Contender: Ryan Gould

For POV, Santa Barbara-based photographer Ryan Gould explores connection between words and pictures, evaluating in the process our culture’s virtual fixation on sexuality and erotica. 

Writes Gould in his Artist Statement, “I’m interested in epistemology; specifically, I’m interested in how language and images interact and impact our understanding of the world. Photographs have long been regarded as unmediated copies of reality, however visual rhetoric suggests that images conceal ideological mystification.

“Language, on the other hand, evokes mental images. The mental images produced resonate with our previous experiences with the associated text. This may be lived experience or virtual. In either case, we often neglect to question where certain associations have been formed. This body of work, titled POV, situates itself within the framework of pornographic click-bait. If one has come to understand words like ‘wet’, ‘oral’, ‘hole’, etc. to be inherently sexual, do we then—when primed with these words—activate some sort of erotic charge?”

All images © Ryan Gould

Each week, Feature Shoot editors showcase the work of one photographer who has applied to the Emerging Photography Awards in order to highlight the diverse array of applications we receive. This is not an endorsement of the photographer for the award.

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