Selections from the Joint Photographic Survey is comprised of a set of images and a publication that traces an archeological study through photographs authored by a fictitious documentary entity operating in the Middle East in the early twentieth century. The project is presented in book form and as a print series as a re-curation of a fictional archival portfolio. This document purports to contain photographs from a joint endeavor between the administrative bodies of British-controlled Palestine and the Emirate of Transjordan in the 1920’s. The images in the print series are contextualized as plates from my publication, showcasing various architectural subject matter left behind by an ancient civilization. Structures pictured in the images cohere to several vernacular styles loosely categorized into towers, rock dwellings, palaces and monuments. Taking aesthetic cues from actual sites in the Middle East, the JPS photographs are in fact simulcra of various Hellenistic, Roman, Egyptian, Arab and Persian architectonic forms created by digitally combining elements of high-resolution photographs I sourced from the United States Library of Congress website. By rooting the project in this particular geographic zone and time period, I aim to underscore the agency of the photographic medium in fabricating a composite image of the Middle East consistent with colonial values and Orientalist distortions."
Adam Ryder works primarily in the lens-based arts, adopting tools he sees to his projects as he sees fit. This has resulted in a wide range of working processes for Ryder including video, 3D rendering, digital image compositing, analog photography and sculpture. Ryder has a keen interest in architecture, genre fiction and anthropology, elements of which he has fused to create his two most recent projects, "Selections from the Joint Photographic Survey," and "Areth: An Architectural Atlas."
Adam Ryder holds an MFA in Photography, Video and Related Media from the School of Visual Arts. His work has focused on the built environment, science and documentary fiction and has been shown in the UK and the US. Ryder has received an individual artist grant from Rhode Island State Council on the Arts and has also been awarded a residency at the Center for Land Use Interpretation in Wendover, Utah. He currently lives and works in Park Slope, Brooklyn where he has a studio and is engaged in several collaborative projects.
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