Our B-Sides this week features Amanny Ahmad, a bi-coastal artist working in multiple mediums. She recently published her first book in a series of three with Shabazz Projects, which consists of mainly iPhone photos taken over the course of her travels, including the West Bank in Palestine, Jamaica and Europe. We asked Amanny to share some insights and images from her smartphone, and you can see more from her as @lalph_rauren on Instagram.
"These photos were all taken within the past few months, from the time I have spent in California on a residency. I am a Palestinian-American, raised in Utah, and I graduated from Cooper Union in 2013. Currently I go between New York and Los Angeles. iPhone photographs lend themselves to creativity, regardless of place, access to materials, or a studio space, and as someone who enjoys traveling often, this has become invaluable to my productivity, more so than with my film camera."
"I like to think that iPhone photographs represent a freedom from the guilt of consumption, acting as non-physical records of moments, without the hassle of a byproduct. Less pressure on the end result allows for a greater possibility in creation. For me, the parts of artistic representation in other mediums, like painting or sculpture, that result in excessive objects, can feel shameful to a certain degree. Through these kinds of photos I find a pureness of imagery in the conceptual sense, something made from nothing but time and energy, that maintains a wasteless presence."
"I take thousands of photos with my iPhone, most of which no one ever sees, because my camera roll acts as my sketchbook, which tends to be an inherently private thing. There is a fair amount of humor involved with the majority of the images I take, and I like to think the lack of preciousness in the medium lends itself to a lightness in appreciation for the bizarre nature of life. Gestures people make unknowingly, tiny plays of light, or lines that meet to make a fortuitous composition, are all details that find their way into my various creative projects. The mundane becomes magnificent with a little extra attention."