Aesthetica Magazine Issue 95

June / July 2020

This moment in time is extraordinary. Every day, I take a long cycle ride around the city of York, UK, where
I live, watching as all my memories unfold in front of me in the most cinematic way. All of them are so
transient but so meaningful right now. Around each corner is a yet another recollection: restaurants I
frequent; where I get my hair cut; where I got proposed to. These activities are all on hold.
I consider myself lucky. I have everything I could need during this lockdown – food, a lovely home,
family, friends and the brilliant Aesthetica team. Everyone I know is healthy and that is absolutely the
most important thing. There are times when life can feel almost normal, but then something like this
happens, and you remember that there is nothing familiar about the situation. Still, I am maintaining a
positive attitude. This moment will pass. Society must recalibrate, pressing the re-set button and trying
harder to create a fairer and more connected world. I know it’s incredibly optimistic, but that’s how I roll.
Perhaps, we can use this time to actually do something about the climate emergency?
This issue is entitled Recalibration. It’s about realignment and hope. As humans, we need to understand
our place in the world and the fragility of this ecosystem. A major retrospective of Lina Bo Bardi was
due to take place in Chicago, so we survey the importance of this, looking at Bo Bardi’s philosophy on
architecture and rebuilding. As cities and urban spaces need to change, her oeuvre teaches us about
how we must always interrogate the present in order to preserve the future. Meanwhile, South African
photographer Athi-Patra Ruga asks us to decolonise the art world and deconstruct power structures. The
work is simply arresting; it is calling for an end to the pageantry of nationalism and its rhetoric.
We also bring you contemplative photography that traverses genres, styles and boundaries. These are
works that will inspire and bring a moment of joy. Meanwhile, our cover photographer Diane Villadsen
soothes our souls with millennial pink and a good sense of humour. Stay safe, and enjoy!

A New Conversation

Through bold costume, colours, pageantry and performance, Athi-Patra Ruga asks meaningful questions about how to decolonise the art sector.

Reality Usurped

KangHee Kim distils the everyday, transforming it into something altogether different and utterly fantastical – encouraging imagination in viewers.

Portraits in Isolation

Julia Keil’s self-portraits reference works from the worlds of film and fine art to express familiar experiences whilst living in global lockdown.

Powerful Narratives

World Photography Organisation outlines the principles behind successful visual storytelling through technical and conceptual innovation.

Design as Resolution

How can architecture create a more inclusive and connected world? Lina Bo Bardi offers vital lessons about how to rebuild and repurpose.

Tapping into Nature

Humanity’s interactions with nature are swiftly being rewritten. Makoto Azuma investigates this idea through large-scale botanical installations.

Colour and Motif

Diane Villadsen builds on our appetite for candy coloured compositions. Dreamlike tones move from blush pink and lemon yellow to soft lilac.

Body as Performance

Photographs from Nana Yaw Oduro provide the manifestation of thought and emotion, expressed through bright colours and physical movements.

A Visual Playground

Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda’s images redefine the conventions of structural photography with an aesthetic inspired by metropolitan living.

Towards the Horizon

Six N. Five develops the idea of “non-spaces” that captivate the attention, providing a visual oasis that is neither real or artificial; inside or outside.