Acceptance and Vulnerability

Photography from Laser Installation
50' W x 60' H
St. James Cathedral
804 Ninth Avenue
Seattle, WA 98104
Photo: Iole Alessandrini


As part of an ongoing photographic project that incorporates time exposure photography and the Laser Plane technology. Unlike previous pictures shown in neutral spaces such as galleries and museums, this one at St. James Cathedral shows images of flat people contextually in the space in which the picture is taken.

Project Description

The conceptual framework in this project is the perspective-frame, introduced in the Renaissance by Brunelleschi. The idea of an invisible structure underlying our visual perception unifies the way people visually perceive the world and understand it. This abstract frame conventionally interposed between the observer and the observed, captures and renders the three-dimensional appearance of reality when seen from a fixed-point perspective. Unlike the abstract frame of perspective, the thin laser plane used in my own work is a physical flat space interposed between the fixed point of view of the camera and the object observed. In a time exposure photograph, an object passing through the plane appears to be compressed into two dimensions. The flattened shapes that I observe in the LP reveal an intangible landscape of figures and fluid perspectives that emerge through the intersection of tangible matter and light. What we see is precondition of what we have already seen. The knowledge of new things allows us to see things afresh.


Iole Alessandrini in collaboration with Ed Mannery

Special Thanks

Ed Mannery for building the laser components

Bruce Dugdale for lending the camera to take this picture

Alice Gosti for being the subject in the picture

Dr. James Savage, Director of Music at St. James Cathedral for letting us install the laser to take this picture.