Score – Amaël de Betak

by | Oct 7, 2019 | Artwork #1: Score

Polaroid Painting


Take a picture using a polaroid camera.

Carefully remove the plastic film covering the picture using a blade of some kind.

Take a paintbrush and use the ink to paint the picture on the back of the polaroid frame.



The three main themes behind this score are rebirth, repurposing and time.


The theme of rebirth comes from the action of taking the picture and ‘killing’ it by cutting through it and removing its life, which can be thought of as the blood representing the blood of the picture. Then, the image is given a new life through the action of remaking it through a different technique and somewhat preserving the medium.


The theme of repurposing comes from this idea of taking something we are given and making something else out of it. One of the ways in which I view this score is somehow fulfilling a desire. When you take a picture, you are not exactly sure as to how it is going to come out, especially on a polaroid camera where there is no display and you simply have to rely on the image which one can see in the viewfinder. Therefore, when the picture comes out there is a chance that we are not satisfied with the outcome. This score allows you to take that polaroid and make something you want out of it by repainting the image with the memory of how you wanted it to be and not necessarily how it came out.


The final theme is time, which is obtained through the process of using a new-ish medium, as polaroid cameras have now been long surpassed by digital cameras, in order to give birth to an ancient medium, in this case, painting which has been present since at least 39,000 BCE with the first painting of a disc found in El Castillo.


The idea behind this score came from an art project which I had worked on where I was exploring the theme of emptiness and unfulfillment and decided to explore the medium of the polaroid. I had created a tryptic with one overexposed polaroid which was completely white, one polaroid which was taken in the total darkness of our school’s darkroom and one which was simply the frame of the polaroid painted using the ink from a picture.