2.25.2011

The Snapshot: Maya Bloch, Steve Kim, & Irina Werning

"The modern artist is working with space and time, and expressing his feelings rather than illustrating." Jackson Pollock

These three artists re-invent snapshots, which are images that people take of everyday life in order to preserve memories.
Untitled, acrylic and oil on canvas,  157.7 x 130 cm, 2010
Untitled, acrylic and oil on canvas, 120 x 110 cm,  2010
Maya Bloch lives and work in Tel Aviv, Israel. She is represented by Thierry Goldberg Projects, which is a gallery in NY that exhibits the work of a range of local and international artists working in a variety of medium.

Maya works with the themes of memory and estrangement. She often paints groups of people who could either be friends or family in compositions that evoke snapshots. For example, the first painting is a family dinner scene. Yet, the figures seem to be removed from their surroundings and in a zombie-like trance. They directly confront and look at the viewer. Maya bases her paintings off found photos. Her paintings capture the inconstancies and gaps in memories even though the purpose of snapshots is to capture a moment in time.

leashed dogs, oil on canvas, 36 x 36 in, 2008
trio, oil on canvas, 24 x 34, 2009
Steve Kim is a Korean American painter who lives and works out of LA. He graduated from Art Center College of Design in 2006 and received his MFA from Claremont in 2010. Steve has exhibited work around California and was featured in New American Paintings.

Steve also paints from snapshots. He depicts everyday scenes but removes information and renders large portions of the canvas blank. His paintings evoke the fluidity of memory. For example, when remembering an event you may remember one detail clearly (like the Nike symbol in the top painting) while the rest is a haze.

Ben and Dan in 1979 and 2010, London
Flo, Maria & Dolores in 1979 & 2010
Irina Werning is a photographer from Buenos Aires. His project "Back to the Future" has received much acclaim on the internet through art websites like Boooooom.

In "Back to Future", Irina invited friends to reenact childhood portraits and in essence re-live old memories. It's interesting to see how much has changed and stayed the same when comparing the two photos.

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