My ongoing project, De bekende wereld (The Known World), is an exploration of contemporary life in America and our complex relationship with the people, spaces, and objects that constitute it. Echoing the aesthetic of Dutch master painting, these images ask viewers to ‘look again’ at the overlooked, and to reconsider their impressions of the modern world.
The great Dutch master painters used visual beauty, emotional directness, light effects, and naturalism to elevate the ‘everyday’. By using their genres and styles as a lens to take a fresh look at the details of our ‘everyday’, we are able to both appreciate and question our contemporary culture. The visual language of classic paintings also adds a sense of timelessness that incorporates our 21st century context into a larger continuum.
Nick Shepard grew up in New York, and after graduating with a degree in Studio Art and Art History from Carleton College in 2007, he earned his MFA in 2011 from the School of Visual Arts in New York. In his photographs, he employs the visual language of classic paintings to explore contemporary American life. His work is currently on view in Blue Sky’s Northwest Drawers. He lives and works in Portland.
Artist’s Website: nickshepard.com