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ROSS HOLDEN | INTRODUCING NEW 'STATIC' SERIES

August 7th 2015
Ross Holden’s ‘Static’ series sees the artist take fragments of photographs taken whilst travelling the world, and piece them together to make collage style works. Angie tells more below.

It’s been four years since we had new work by Ross Holden, so I’m looking forward to talking about these pieces today, which are from his new series titled ‘Static’. A keen traveler - he’s spent the best part of the past four years travelling the globe - Ross is fascinated by people, places and cultural differences, and the shots that make up these wonderful kaleidoscopic photo-collages were taken while traveling around Central Asia, inspired by the places he visited and the people he met. Photographs and memories combine to produce a body of work that reflects on cultures and attitudes Ross encountered while on the road, as well as the personal journey he experienced.

I asked him if he had these works in mind when he was taking the photographs, or whether the idea came to him once he’d returned to the UK, and he told me it was a bit of both. He initially had the idea whilst looking in a mosaic mirror on a mosque wall in Iran. He could see his reflection, but also the people walking past and the scenery behind him, all reflected in the various pieces of mirror, making some sort of moving pattern. He recalls the experience as feeling as if he “wasn’t really there”, and like “everything was already in the past” due to the fact it reminded him of the way we look back at things, with repetitions, fragments and a lot of movement. He instantly wondered if he could recreate something similar from the thousands of photographs he’d taken during his trip to make patterns (of such) about his own journey.

Ross has always enjoyed looking at images that need closer inspection; those that you see something different each time you look, and this is definitely the case with these works. From a distance, the images look noisy, but up close it’s clear there are little fragments of life pieced together. Once home, Ross spent some time going through all his photographs (he apparently had over 12,000!), looking into the backgrounds to see what had been captured that he could use in these artworks. It’s important to him that the image is balanced, so one side isn’t visually heavier than the other, or that there isn’t one overwhelming focal point, creating an equilibrium, much like Mondrian used to do in his work.

Each section is thought out carefully, and images are placed next to each other that compliment and contradict each other, in subject matter, colour or theme. Star spangled banners appear next to the hammer and sickle, doves next to guns, young next to old, adverts next to reality, life next to death, while continuingly attempting to build up a memory of a place. Repetition plays a big part and some images appear two or three times in the same piece, in an attempt to mirror the repetition that’s around us in our everyday lives.

The geometric patterns that appear around the images are important. Ross wanted to include something in the works that links us - the human race - all together, wherever we are in the world, and he found he encountered similar patterns in places with completely different cultural backgrounds, and these shapes are there to replicate this.

Visual Snow is a combination of Static 01, 02 and 03 on top of one another, and it’s interesting to see which images come through the clearest, much like our minds remember certain fragments of information more than others.

Although Ross uses travel as a means to look at the world, he doesn’t consider himself a ‘travel photographer’. For him these images are more about where we are as individuals rather than about the place the images were captured. He likes the element of wonder that comes with exploring each piece and wanting to know where these mini scenes from reality have existed, and they will. Fascinating and consuming, these works are addictive and will have you hooked for hours.

See all four new pieces, which are available to buy online from today, here.
ANGIE DAVEY
Creative Director
ROSS HOLDEN
Static 02
 
 
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