Art Works Blog

Talking Pictures with Vishal Marapon

In the eyes of photographer Vishal Marapon, mundane objects—fire hydrants, stairwells, street corners—become sublime paintings of the everyday. Through his thoughtful use of light, shadow, and composition, he calls attention to the "geometry of urban design", injecting new life into ordinary rectangular steps, square window frames, and cylindrical railings. It’s hard to believe that some of his pictures are not paintings. Then, of course, there's the element that first drew me to his images on Instagram (he took over The New Yorker’s feed for a week in early 2017)---the stark combination of bold and muted colors. There’s something arresting about the mélange of soft pinks, shadowy grays, and beachy turquoise blues. Many of his images, no matter how ostensibly pedestrian, have a way of transporting you to some serene, washed out part of what could be Miami, Los Angeles, or Rio de Janeiro. In this audio slideshow, listen to him discuss his work as you look at his off-kilter take of the world. Whether it’s with his iPhone or a high-end medium format camera, Marapon can transform the side of a building into a work of art.

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