I am particularly interested in uban photography, thus, I wanted to find a way and through repetition, of shapes and objects that are recognisable in the urban view, to create my own style of depiction of contemporary life.
I was influenced by the photography artist Alex Webb and his choice of framing very simple but emotionaly heavy everyday moments. I like the intence colours that the film photography had in the 90s, furthermore, it works very well with Websb’s pictures creating a sureal image of happines in brutality.
post with pictures of the artist: https://mariaparaschidou.wordpress.com/2019/11/05/alex-webb/
Through making art I want to highligt and attract interest to the uglines we create and we find beauty in. I belive that this contrast between reality and utopian image of our suroundings is a very dipolic attribute of humanity, thus, I try to expose it through photography and repetition of similar image.
This contrast for example is very evident in contemporary advertisment. Even though the capital city can be the most ugly view of a country, we will still advertise it as the best experience of beauty, showing only a specific image that attracts tourists. In the city center of Athens the most usual image is something like this, that is always free:
City Center Athens, Maria Paraschidou documenting Athens- pictures, 2019.
But tourists are only called over to visit this, that always has a price:
My aim is to expose the real image of things but still focus on the beauty of ugliness, especially in urban photography.
My work is very influenced by the Bauhouse movement as well. Influenced by my visits to Nottingham Contemporay Museum, the exhibition Still Undead: Popular Culture in Britain Beyond the Bauhaus, and the Bauhaus Archive Museum in Berlin, I was focusing on simple lines, plain shapes and obejects of utility. What I found very interesting about the movement was it’s philosophy, reconception of the material world in order to reflect the complete entity of the arts. As I understand it, the creative encompasement of objects previously concieved as non artistic, into the artistic creation of all kinds. The transformation of furniture into very minimal designs and pieces of art is something that influences the way I use objects into my painitings and photography.
Still Undead: Popular Culture in Britain Beyond the Bauhaus, Nottingham Contemporary Museum, 2019.
Gap Crit Exhibition, Maria Paraschidou, 2019.
Furthermore, walking around the Nottingham Contemporary Museum I was greatly influenced on how I displayed my first Gap Crit exhibition in term one. I was mainly influenced by the informality of the exhibition, the display of pictures and papers with no frames or specificaly lined display. Ι belive that this Gap Crit was a very crutial moment for my work. I embraced the urban element into my work as well as it was the first time I experimented with new objects and transparent backgrounds like the window for the first time. One other element that I imitated from the NCM exhibition was the natural light component. Entering one of the rooms of the exhibition, the natural light revealed a different outcome. The big windows and the outside view deffinetely added an extra layer to the arcitectural and to the contemporary objects of bauhaus style. This exactly was what I tried to do with my transparent drawings and other objects that I placed next to the window. I tried to pick a space that could host an exhibition but beared an arcitectural and a cold environmental element, that would refer to the urban reality. Obviously my work is also influenced by the 21st-century urban street reality, thus, it contains a lot of graffiti.
A lot of times I understand objects as creations of art that need to be placed in an image as the main models. Objects usualy carry a story and identity that has a lot to say about the contemporary way of life. Spray cans for example that I like to photograph, can be looked at as symbol of the fast developing and fast producing of things nowadays.
Nottingham Contemporary Museum post: https://mariaparaschidou.wordpress.com/2019/11/05/nottingham-contemporary/
In Level 5 I also had looked into photography for a while that was focusing more on color and objects. At that point I was interested on how handmade editing on photography influences the outcome of the image and transforms reality to beeing non realistic. Influenced by Bauhaous and the movement’s use of simplicity as well as utility to create art created a series of pictures that I now feel that influenced me a lot into object photography and my final projects.
Examples of the series: