Rankin Destroy Analysis
In 2009, Rankin had gotten together with a variety of artists and musicians to create a new project, known as ‘Rankin Destroy’. Rankin took photographs of various musicians and then, along with other artists, ‘destroyed’ them by means of scratches, paint smudges and dripping coloured liquids. Rankin made his name in 1992 by founding and publishing with Jefferson Hack, the magazine ‘Dazed and Confused’.
This photograph is of the singer Kyle. She can be seen wearing overhead earphones and a crop top. At first glance it appears that paint or ink has been randomly splattered onto the photograph. However, to the centre of the photograph the paint or ink has been done in what seems to be various circular motions. On some parts it is clear that a lot of materials have been used as you can see the dripping effect created by this. In the upper left hand of the photograph, more paint / ink can be seen. This section is different from the paint / ink in the centre of the photograph as this section looks almost like a signature; in a very abstract way. The original photograph itself is black and white which makes the paint / ink stand out even more and make more of an impact on the overall image. The paint / ink are in hues of deep reds to light purples and pinks which draws our attention to the lines and drips made.
I was not able to find a direct meaning for this photograph but my initial thought is that the paint / ink represent music. The big, overhead earphones help with this idea as the circular lines and the drips could be the different parts of the music the model, Kyle is listening to or even her own music. From the specific colours used for the paint / ink (reds and pinks), there could be a theme to this photograph, love. The swirls and the circular lines representing the feelings felt through love and also music again, both lyric wise and instrumental wise. The paint/ink, not necessarily relating to feelings of love, but also other emotions and could represent music being used as a release. Following on from this idea, the photograph could also be attempting to show how people ‘zone out’ to music, by this I mean forgetting any troublesome factors and just enjoying the music for what it is. It could also represent when people use music to meditate.
I like what Rankin has done with this photograph as it is open to many interpretations. I like the idea that the ink / paints used on this image represent the sensations felt and created from music and adds a more dimensional effect. Personally I would have preferred a more variety of colours as it would make the piece more interesting for me but his use of texture and line thickness adds depth to the emotions that are, I’m assuming trying to be portrayed.