MIRRORED MASLEN & MEHRA
Lucy Bell Fine Art is pleased to present, Mirrored, the first solo exhibition in the region by collaborative duo Maslen & Mehra who moved to St Leonards-On-Sea in early 2013, and as part of the new Hastings Photo Festival which launches this year.
In an age of digital photography and new technologies, Maslen & Mehra, in their Mirrored and Native series, find themselves immersed in non-digital photographic techniques. They explore ideas that revolve around the coexistence of nature and culture in an increasingly complex world. For these series they create temporary interventions in natural and urban landscapes, which they then capture with a medium format film camera. The imagery from both these series suggests a place where we can have our cake and eat it too. A paradise wherewe strive to co-habit with the flora and fauna of our planet (Mirrored series) and a place where we can live in our urban realities but somehow still remain connected to nature (Native series).For the Mirrored series, Maslen & Mehra appropriate imagery of people, whose silhouettes are thenmade into mirrored sculptures. By placing them into the landscape and photographing them in thisnew context, Maslen & Mehra forge an unusual synthesis at first sight: the juxtaposition of highlyurban people and wide-open spaces. (Black Canyon, Mojave Desert USA; Cuckmere, East Sussex;Lake Waikaremoana, New Zealand; Ramsey Island, UK) The result of these forced symbioses raisesissues of the human existence and alludes to the impermanence and fragility of mankind.In the Native series, Maslen & Mehra research fauna that is, or once was indigenous to the country inwhich they are photographed. Then, by posing mirrored sculptures of these animals in an urbanenvironment, they in turn reflect the man-made structures around them. Cities including London, NewYork, Paris, Rome, Istanbul and Berlin have all been the subject of Maslen & Mehra's experimentalphotographs. Heavily built-up urban landscapes are photographed in the early hours, when they aredevoid of human activity. The artists take this fleeting opportunity to re-introduce native species intothe picture in the form of mirrored sculptures. RoeDeer appear to graze in Canary Wharf, a financial district of London; an American Eagle takes flightin Times Square, New York, apturing a skyscraper and brilliant neon on its mirrored wing.Maslen & Mehra create a sense of urgency in both series hich leaves us with questions about ourcivilisation, its origin and its future, at times when global-warming, global wars and technologies arepart of the same world.
Selection of highlights: MASLEN & MEHRA were selected for Brighton Photo Fringe Night Projections 2013, Creekside, London 2013 selected by Paul Noble and LUMINOUSFLUX which took place at the Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery as part of the Perth International Arts Festival. Artists included Dan Flavin, MASLEN & MEHRA, Jim Campbell, Rebecca Baumann, Bill Culbert. Works by MASLEN & MEHRA are included in collections such as Tattinger Switzerland, Galila Collection Brussels, Art Es Collecion Madrid, numerous international private collections and the Altered Landscape Collection, Nevada Museum of Art which includes artists such as Berndand Hilla Becher and Edward Burtynsky. M & M are featured in the stunningaccompanying book titled The Altered Landscape published by Rizzoli. Solo exhibitions have been staged inNew York, London, Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Dubai, Istanbul, Toronto, Perth, Sydney and Berlin. A monograph titled MIRRORED was published by Verlag für moderne Kunst Nürnberg with support from the Arts Council Of England with texts by art historian Edward Lucie-Smith and Eugen Blume, curator at the HamburgerBahnoff Museum Berlin. In 2011 there was a solo presentation of work for the Scotiabank CONTACT International Photography Festival, Toronto and a public installation was commissioned for the Halifax Ferry Terminal. In 2006 Maslen & Mehra had a half page feature in the New York Times with an image from the Mirrored series.
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