Carter’s Polaroids pose as casual snapshots, a series of ‘accidental’ photographs missing their target subject to capture only a pair of disembodied hands, a hint of human presence amidst various arrangements of inanimate objects. The appendages in the images are in fact fakes, plastic substitutions that render the notion of body as generic and interchangeable. In his exploration of the post-human, Carter searches for an idealised self: physiognomy, irrespective of difference, is explored as the equalising factor of human experience.

In Polaroid (2006 #1 and #2) and Polaroid (2006 #3 & #4) Carter pairs his photographs in diptych format. Each frame portrays the mannequin/artist in his studio, with subtle alterations in position and background: the potted plant moved a few inches, the drapery over the shrouded bust rearranged, a picture of a head included, then removed. Each of these elements becomes synonymous with the body itself, the differences in the photographs serve only to reinforce their sameness.

In Polariod (2006 #5) and Polaroid (2006 #6) Carter’s artificial hands are accompanied by the accoutrements of the living: comb, glass of water, houseplant, each lending a plausible authenticity to the dummy limbs. Arranged on top of a sheet of paper bearing the vague marks of an initialised sketch, Carter’s photographed assemblages further confuse the relationship between sculpture, drawing, and illusion. Using documentary medium of photography, Carter readily supplants the assumption of reality with an artificial construction, highlighting the discrepancy between outward appearance and inner content.

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