Urban development and the vernacular firmly inform the practice of Vancouver-based artist Vishal Marapon (b. 1981). Connecting to changing cities through the lens of gentrification, expansion and progression, the images are both aesthetically pleasing and intensely hyperreal – capturing surroundings with a simultaneous sense of detachment and beauty. Each structure appears isolated, spliced and framed – devoid of temporal or contextual identifiers. Even so, the featured streets are teaming with colour and pattern, drawing the viewer into a landscape that is equally as alluring as it is deserted. The viewer is unable to form a direct relationship with the sites as no information is given about location, history or purpose; the buildings could belong to any city. Ultimately, the importance of geographic identity is called into question. The geometry of stairwells, doorframes and façades is simply to be appreciated for the striking, satisfying forms. https://vishalmarapon.com.
Lead image: Vishal Marapon, Abbott Kinney, Venice, CA, 2016. From the ongoing series Rambles. Courtesy of the artist.