The Constructed Image

Artist Luis Gispert: All images courtesy Redux Contemporary Art Center

Redux Contemporary Art Center in Charleston, SC is opening a new exhibition today titled The Constructed Image, curated by Founder and Editor, Seth Curcio. The show features five contemporary photographers whose work challenges the very nature of truth as documented by the photograph. Through a variety of techniques, including digital and traditional photographic manipulation, set constructions, temporary sculpture, models and intricate dioramas, the artists create a very calculated visual experience. The exhibition includes works by artists Luis Gispert, Lori Nix, Daniel Gordon, Chris Scarborough and Nathan Baker, and will be on view through June 7th. Please read below for details on the exhibition and the artists.

Many experiences in contemporary life are framed through the lens of the camera. Advertising, television, web pages, film, and publications all employ subtle manipulation to construct a new and often better reality. Blemishes are removed, distractions are dodged and a new context is often placed behind the subject. In The Constructed Image, each artist calls into question how truth is recorded and conveyed to the viewer through imagery and the subsequent effect of constructed imagery in contemporary society.

Photographer, filmmaker and sculptor, Luis Gispert, whose work is pictured above, recently completed a double solo exhibition titled El Mundo Es Tuyo (The World is Yours) with Zach Feuer Gallery and Mary Boone Gallery in NYC this year. His latest series features the inside of custom built trucks, which are placed in a new context as the artist digitally combines the ornate interiors of the trucks with luscious and exotic scenes that depict Latin-American socio-economic tableaus. The Whitney Museum in NYC recently selected work from this series for their permanent collection.

His work was also featured in the 2002 Whitney Biennial and in exhibitions at the Royal Academy of Art, London, Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt, ZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe, Germany, and MoCA, Shanghai. A survey exhibition of his work will open at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Miami in 2008.

Chris Scarborough.jpg
Artist: Chris Scarborough

Like Gispert, artist Chris Scarborough also constructs his images digitally, manipulating the photo pixel-by-pixel to create a new reality. He reconstructs and distorts his subject’s faces and bodies according to the tropes of Japanese manga or anime, examining ideas related to cuteness, beauty and perfection. Scarborough has exhibited with TAG Gallery, Nashville, Gescheidle, Chicago and Marcia Wood Gallery, Atlanta, GA and has a forthcoming exhibition titled, Warbabies with the Foley Gallery, NYC.

Artist: Lori Nix

Bending the line between truth and illusion, artist Lori Nix creates fictional worlds from small dioramas that seem to exist on a grand scale. On view at Redux will be three images from the artist’s The City series, which features interior scenes of large structures such as The Museum of Art and The Aquarium in ruin. Nix has exhibited widely across the nation and is currently represented by Randall Scott Gallery in Washington, D.C., Stephen Cohen Gallery, Los Angeles, G. Gibson Gallery, Seattle, Miller Block Gallery, Boston and ClampArt in NYC. Nix was featured in the May edition of Wired Magazine.

Artist: Daniel Gordon

Also constructing his images by physically building the contents is New York-based artist Daniel Gordon. Gordon carefully constructs temporary sculptures from Internet source material and then photographs the sculptures for presentation. Through this process, the viewer has a controlled experience with the work, as its physical construction is never fully revealed. Gordon has exhibited with Zach Feuer Gallery, NYC, GroeflinMaag Gallery, Basel, Switzerland, and the Angstrom Gallery, Dallas TX.

Artist: Nathan Baker

Selections from Nathan Baker‘s photographic series Rupture will also be on view in the exhibition. The series is loosely based on the philosophy of Martin Heidegger and the idea of the Present at Hand, a situation that causes hyper awareness through an unexpected breach of life’s daily routine. Baker places the viewer in the first person perspective or as a voyeur, watching someone else in the process of the experience. The artist attended both Kendall College of Art & Design and Columbia College in Chicago. Baker has exhibited with the Randall Scott Gallery in DC, Blue Sky Gallery in Portland and the Schneider Gallery in Chicago.

This collection of works in the exhibition presents the viewer with a variety of experiences and questions about the role of truth in contemporary imagery. Each artist confronts the viewer with a hyper-real version of life; one that physically transforms our understanding of what is possible. This work expands our awareness of the manipulation in photographic sources while also bringing attention to the saturation of constructed imagery in contemporary society.