University of Sussex: BA Media Practice

Golden Calf



Golden Calf is based around the idea of idolatry between fans and musicians and the ways in which musicians reinforce this through their learned behaviours from previous stars and idols. The project incorporates live performance images of both aspects of this, showing the crowd’s interaction with the artist, as well as the behaviours that the artists have learnt to perform. Idolising musicians is a global and somewhat integral part of being. For many people, worshipping their idols is a way to connect with likeminded people and form their own identity. 

By using photography as a medium, it freezes these interactions and behaviours through a decisive moment, which Bate (2009) discusses as “story-telling with a single picture”. By removing the context and looking at them from outside of that environment, the behaviours make less sense. It shows that a live music environment creates a space like no other, where people can express themselves in ways that would not be acceptable in other places.