26 by 26 6:55am, 8 August 2013
Challenge #12:
Photograph a fake.
– Andreas Gefeller

"And if ever, by some unlucky chance, anything unpleasant should somehow happen, why, there's always Soma to give you a holiday from the facts." (Aldous Huxley, Brave New World)

(click on the grey icon to view)

(click on the grey icon to view)

(click on the grey icon to view)

(click on the grey icon to view)

All images copyright of Andreas Gefeller

"Enormous, bulldozed areas for parking-spaces, adjacent hotel-silos, artificially strewn beaches, rows of deck-chairs for kilometres on end, barren green lawns between concrete and barrier fences. These are standardized, controlled and very »clean« places on Gran Canaria, which photographer Andreas Gefeller transforms into bleak utopian sets in his work Soma. The geographic origin of these strange sites systematically yields to a sensational metaphysics of space. Although produced in a conventional analogous way, these pictures seem to be digitally reworked. In the age of cyberspace, where reality and virtuality intersect, this work raises one question in particular: How real is this reality and how authentic are the ways of showing it?"


As well as being a good place to connect with other members and share your initial reactions, thoughts about how to 'solve it' and any links you think might help the group. This can also be a good place to include any old photos you have that fit the challenge or your work-in-progress during the two weeks before posting your final image to the group pool.

We're looking forward to hearing people's thoughts, good luck everyone!
— 26 by 26 team
ireniclife PRO 5 years ago
My first step was to try and get a feel for where Gefeller is coming from by absorbing the photos above. My next step was to Google 'Soma' as I'm not that familoiar with Brave New World. Gosh that has given me food for thought! Another stimulating challenge.
Mark W Russell Posted 5 years ago. Edited by Mark W Russell (admin) 5 years ago
Old shots that work around the area of this brief:-


Orange curve

Vertflex XXXII

cjcrosland PRO Posted 5 years ago. Edited by cjcrosland (member) 5 years ago
There are so many different layers of fakeness in the world - it's going to be fascinating peeling them back!
Julia M Cameron PRO 5 years ago
Tulipa Dendrobranchiata 2

My special species of tulip...
maximilianen 5 years ago
Jumping Jack Flash
MrGorski Posted 5 years ago. Edited by MrGorski (member) 5 years ago
First thoughts: fakery involves deception: there is an intention on the part of the counterfeiter to mislead. Arguably, therefore, fake tans, false nails, false eyelashes, false teeth, wigs, glass eyes and so forth aren't fake – not in the way that (say) facelifts and boob jobs are. That suggests that there must be a good chance that we don't spot a true fake: that it has the capacity to persist over time, and is not just a fleeting effect, a flash in the pan. (Counterfeit money'd be the obvious example of something we don't 'see through' immediately). Could this line of thought be developed to take account of the age of the person that you intend to deceive? Hence dummies/pacifiers seem to be truly fake (fake nipples). Also the intent to deceive certain animals: the silhouettes of birds of prey (pigeon scarers) tethered to tall buildings might be called true fakes. Likewise scarecrows. And fishing flies. (But not animal camouflage arising from natural selection).

Fakery worked on ideas and notions: Gefeller's photographs of something that might have been sold to people as 'heaven on earth'. What if we asked the inmates of a development on Gran Canaria whether it was heaven on earth, and they said it was? Is fakery with regard to an idea or notion merely a matter of opinion? (In that case, which photographs are the true fakes here – the glossy photographs in the promotional brochures selling the development or Gefeller's?) Even so, what's my authority/his authority – as a photographer – for calling a view of the world, or of human needs or desires, 'fake'? Why should the viewer believe me/him? (Come to that, why believe the promo materials?) Does this sort of more 'abstract' take on the challenge come down to rhetoric rather than reason, is it about making an appeal to the heart rather than the head?
Leripix Posted 5 years ago. Edited by Leripix (member) 5 years ago
It's the soma idea that I find fascinating - "all the benefits of religion and alcohol, without the defects".

dacaccia 5 years ago
ireniclife PRO 5 years ago

A very interesting post MrGorsky, and all the questions you raise are good ones, very relevant to this topic. Your use of the word inmates conjures up gaols and asylums, and again set me thinking. You are spot on, when it comes ideas, fakery can be propaganda, rhetoric, seduction, enlightenment, or any number of things. From a photographers perspective it could be all sorts too, slight of hand, ironic take, I say you've got me thinking. : )
ireniclife PRO 5 years ago

Love this
Groups Beta