Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

Photograph - Action Photo I (After Hans Namuth)
  • Action Photo I (After Hans Namuth)
    Muniz, Vik, born 1961
  • Enlarge image

Action Photo I (After Hans Namuth)

  • Object:

    Photograph

  • Place of origin:

    Brazil (possibly, made)

  • Date:

    1997 (photographed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Muniz, Vik, born 1961 (photographer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Dye destruction print

  • Credit Line:

    Copyright Vik Muniz

  • Museum number:

    E.493-1998

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Vik Muniz takes well known images that have become familiar through repeated reproductions and recreates them from memory, using household materials like sugar, chocolate, and thread. He then makes a photographic record of them using a dye destruction method of printing his photographs.

Muniz creates a witty and uncanny effect by translating these well-known images into strange visual puzzles. We can either suspend disbelief by imagining the 'original' photograph which inspired his invention, or think of his work as virtuoso drawings which last only seconds for the camera before melting or disintegrating. This is one of several of Hans Namuth's portraits that Muniz has recreated using chocolate syrup. The original photographs were published in Life magazine.

Dye destruction prints are made using print material which has at least three emulsion layers, each one sensitised to a different primary colour--red, blue or green--and each one containing a dye related to that colour. During exposure to the negative, each layer records different information about the colour make-up of the image. During printing, the dyes are destroyed or preserved to form a full colour image in which the three emulsion layers are perceived as one. Dye destruction prints are characterised by vibrant colour. The process used to be called Cibachrome; it is now known as Ilfochrome.

Physical description

This large scale portrait of Jackson Pollock at work in his studio has been made in chocolate and then captured on photographic film. The chocolate has been shaped to resemble an original photograph taken by Hans Namuth.

Place of Origin

Brazil (possibly, made)

Date

1997 (photographed)

Artist/maker

Muniz, Vik, born 1961 (photographer)

Materials and Techniques

Dye destruction print

Dimensions

Height: 152.4 cm, Width: 121 cm

Descriptive line

Muniz, Vik, Action Photo I (After Hans Namuth), 1997, Cibachrome print

Labels and date

Making It Up: Photographic Fictions (2018)
Marta Weiss

Muniz recreates well-known images with materials such as chocolate, sugar and thread. He then makes a photographic record of these ‘drawings’. Here, he reproduces a famous photograph of the painter Jackson Pollock at work. The sticky chocolate sauce echoes the characteristic drips of paint in Pollock’s work. []
Vik Muniz (Brazilian, born 1961)
Action Picture (from Pictures of Chocolate) 1997
Dye destruction print
Bought 1998
E.493-1998

"Why do people like magic? The lower the technical approach of the magician, the better the trick appears to be. People like to be fooled, but they also like to have the impression that they're not being fooled ... If one makes a drawing that works on a photographic level, like photorealism, you tend to believe that thing as actually existing at one point, much as you believe a photograph ...There's something magical about the fact that I can take this pencil here, I can make ten little marks with it, and you can see a house. This is alchemy."

From an interview with Vincent Katz, in On Paper: The Journal of Prints, Drawings, and Photography, Spring 1997, p.29 []
Vik Muniz takes well known images that have become familiar through repeated reproductions and recreates them from memory, using household materials such as sugar, chocolate, and thread. He then makes a photographic record of these 'drawings'. Here, we see an image of painter Jackson Pollock recreated in chocolate syrup, the sticky sauce echoing the characteristic drips of paint in Pollock's work. [2008-2009]
Label for 'Making It Up: Photographic Fictions' (3 May 2013 - 12 January 2014):

Vik Muniz (born 1961)
Action Photo I (After Hans Namuth)
1997

Muniz recreates well-known images with materials such as sugar, chocolate, and thread. He then makes a photographic record of these ‘drawings’. Here, he reproduces a famous photograph of the painter Jackson Pollock at work. The sticky chocolate sauce echoes the characteristic drips of paint in Pollock’s work.

Dye destruction print
Museum no. E.493-1998
[]

Materials

Chocolate

Subjects depicted

Chocolate

Categories

Photographs; Portraits

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.