Behind the Work: Michael Corridore and Angry Black Snake



‘Untitled 28, 2007’. From the series: Angry Black Snake

It’s almost a shame to talk about this series. I fear that the true story behind the moment will affect the viewer’s own imagined back story of the scenario.

The photograph was taken at the DECA facility in Shepparton, Victoria in November 2007, during a Burn out competition at the annual ‘Springnats’ festival.

This photograph is part of a body of work taken predominantly at the same festival over a six year, period. I was drawn to the event through my interest in customized cars and the culture, which comes with that world. My intention was to photograph portraits of participants at the event as a point of departure. During one of the many burnout competitions, I became more fascinated by the landscape, the crowds and the censorship of these elements by the acrid dense smoke generated by the competitors and their hotted up cars. The vale of the smoke created an uneasy sense of uncertainty and manipulated the situation and the understanding of what was taking place.

The smoke passes through the crowds in seconds, so capturing these moments takes a considerable amount of time and persistence. The process is hit or miss, which meant that I had to go back to build a bigger series of photographs. At each event, I may come back with 3 – 5 successful photographs. There are so many elements to consider when taking a photograph in this series, the position of the people within the frame, the cropping of the landscape, the strength of any breeze or wind and the density of the smoke. Most of the time I’m waiting for all of these elements to intersect.