Friday, September 21, 2007

Dennis Chamberlin

I love taking pictures. I'm not in any way skilled at it, but I do have a sincere appreciation for those individuals who can take a great picture. Dennis Chamberlin is one of those individuals. His collection Screen Culture is currently showing at Kirkwood in Cedar Rapids, but you can also view it online here. My favorite is the first one in that gallery entitled Gameboy. Instead of settling into bed with a book, this little boy is huddled in the dark with his Gameboy. I get such a sense of love from the boy for that little piece of plastic and wires. While my immediate reaction is to lament that the gadget has taken the place of the book, I also wonder if maybe I'm just an old fashioned foolish man who won't accept that times have changed.


Robyn said...

I don't think lamenting the loss of books is foolish, because I think books require more active participation of the imagination than most video games. that might change as video games continue to develop, but most times it's just a matter of doing a set task a certain way in order to achieve specific results. mechanical skill, I would say.

that's not to say that video games are bad, just different. there's a time and a place for both. =)

and yes, it's a very nice photo.

Sharon said...

I get the feeling that this is a photo exhibit intended to elicit pangs of loss in the depicted scenes--look at that family, gathered around the boob tube, all staring straight ahead and not interacting, it seems to say.

Perhaps I'm being too sensitive, but I think TV and videogames have their place in family fun. As long as it doesn't replace interaction.

Dennis said...

Matt, your immediate reaction is perfectly valid and is something that I often feel these days when I see my kids put aside a book in favor of one of these devices. I think that the larger implications are even more scary - I often see people make the choice to isolate themselves with these gadgets rather than interact with people. I agree that the technology is seductive and fun to use but it creates mixed feelings in me when I see how people use it to distance themselves from others.

I sometimes joke that the Gameboy image was made the night when I realized that I lost my son to the world of technology. In retrospect there is more truth to that statement than I originally intended.

Matt said...

Dennis, thanks for stopping by and offering your thoughts. I really love your work. My wife commented that she liked the one which shows the boy showing the girl how to use the Gameboy. Proof that we still need interaction even with our mechanical gadjets?

Ania said...

I think that books are healthier and if kids read more books they talk about what they read, it's better interaction.I know becasue I'm a kid and I love to talk about books. I've also noticed that when my brother plays a video game his patience level goes down and slowly his imagination grows smaller.