William Lakin: In your artist statement you suggest that your use of humour is a strategy to get people’s attention, to ‘keep you from walking past it’, how did humour become apart of your practice?
Rory Hamovit: There is a case for, that I know is true for many funny people, that I developed a comedic flare as a childhood defence mechanism but I believe there to be more to it than that. I’m drawn to the narrative capabilities of humor, as well as the liberated space absurdity provides. I cherish comedy because it requires sadness and joy, holding them in balance. It feels incredibly human. With my own practice, I fought funny intuitions for a long time believing good photos are solemn, steely, impenetrable reflections of a self-serious world, which is absurd. The more humorous and earnest I let my images be the wider the emotional gamut and greater the staying power the work had with the viewer. And it’s not like it’s easier making humorous work, it requires so much refinement, but I’ve leaned into laughter. The auditory response was a major shift.
WL: What do you mean by, 'the auditory response was a major shift'? Do you mean literally provoking audible laughter with your work?
RH: I do mean literally hearing laughter as a response to my work. It was that instant reflex reaction of laughter from a viewer that let me knew the work was working on an instinctual level.