Born 1965, Perth, Western Australia
Annie Hogan's photographs of the untenanted interiors of Brisbane rental properties are heavy with phenomenological suggestiveness, almost like illustrations for Gaston Bachelard's Poetics of Space. The notion of the house as an armature of the self is a familiar one, and Bachelard's work takes us from the attic to the cellar, through all the cupboards and corners of being. But Hogan's work is different – less sentimental, more rigorous, arriving at a crueller truth. For if the lived interior is always full of 'personal effects', Hogan's interiors are stripped bare: the boxes have been loaded in the car, the carpet vacuumed, and the room made ready for the next inhabitant. The home is revealed, poignantly, as a place of transience. What Hogan shows us is the shape of being without the being in it.
The distinctiveness of Hogan's approach is its drive towards abstraction, in both pictorial and philosophical senses. By her use of deep saturated colour, her distorted perspectives, and her framing of curtains, blinds and walls as fields of colour, her images emphasise the purely pictorial over photography's traditional role of 'evidence'. But if these techniques lean towards aesthetic detachment, her frequent use of diptychs restores intimacy by undermining the distance of photography's single perspective. Comfort, for instance, places the viewer inside the room, feeling the smell of the carpet and the cool slanting light. Without this delicate balance of detachment and involvement, Hogan's titles – Precarious, Nebulous, Bittersweet – might seem either ironic or obvious or both. Instead they perfectly complement the rigour and restraint of the images, creating a desolate and poignant sense of the 'lived'.
Russell Smith from his Samstag catalogue essay, Making The Makers
2002 Anne & Gordon Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarship
2002 MFA, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, USA
2000 Bachelor of Visual Art (Honours) (Photography), Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Brisbane
1997 Bachelor of Photography, Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Brisbane