Wednesday, 28 January 2009

'Untitled' 1992. Zoe Leonard

I have to confess, I'm not a huge gallery fan. I love art and can really appreciate it, but since it is so subjective I find I'm only ever drawn to works that I can relate to and understand. 
   Whilst at the Tate Modern on Monday a few pieces stood out, but one in particular was that of Zoe Leonard. 

Leonard was born in New York City in 1961 and focuses on Photography, choosing to specifically take an interest into how society, the economy and cultures are ever drastically changing.

" I am interested in making a record of an urban landscape as a way of looking at who we are as a people, who we are a culture, understanding the city as a social space, an economic space"
"Untitled" captures a lonely and deserted woodland situated just in front of a promising yet intimidating hill. I find this photo interesting because I often find myself taking scenic pictures as there is something very calming and serene about Nature. The bare, leafless barks can speak to parts of us that we close off or keep to ourselves. They are parts of us that we rarely like to speak about but yet when you see something that has captured that emotion and emphasised it through a medium that is peaceful, you can find yourself possibly more at ease and more open then you would have thought. 
  I find that Leonard also successfully captured the feeling of being alone as there is no suggestion of any human interaction, yet if you were to place yourself inside the photo I believe you may not feel lost and instead might marvel at being so intimate with nature and its beauty. This is because the composition has been positioned to ensure that the Woodland is the main subject but you can still see the sky above and the hill so you don't feel so closed off and segregated from outside the trees. Perhaps with her inclusion of what seems like a Bee's nest, the metaphor of life is captured within a dead looking surrounding promising that the trees will blossom once Winter is over, filling the woodland with life once again.

The colours are a mixture of mono-tones, Black, White and Grey. The only predominant colour is that of the bleached white sky. I would have thought that perhaps the trees would have a slightly darker tint than its surroundings but perhaps that's where our main focus would lie on which may not be the intention of the artist.
I believe photography is a great way to get an insight into the artists thoughts and not only that, but to make you question your own ones too.