MATT HENRY grew up in the hills of North Wales and is now based in Brighton, England. He works with photography and stages fictional scenes that draw on interests first explored during an undergraduate degree in Politics (Univ. of Nottingham). A self-taught photographer, Matt went on to study MA Photography (Univ. of Brighton) and has since published two photography books — Short Stories and Night of the Hunted — and is currently working on book number three. Matt is represented by Polka Galerie in Paris and has had two solo shows at the gallery to date. His third exhibition will coincide with the release of his new book: Misadventure.
The artist says of his photographs...
I make fictional narratives set in the Mid-century era that often play with real-world themes and events. The narratives comprise a sequence of photographs staged across set-builds and dressed locations. Each is storyboarded and typically features a cast of actors that I style and direct. My production process shares elements with traditional film-making, including casting, location scouting, lighting/set design, props, and costume, as well as the use of period hair and makeup. The work has been described as 'stills from a movie that was never made'. The images are released as archival inkjet prints, as well as being produced in book form.
My narratives seek not to emulate or comment on the medium of film, but rather to use the sequenced still image as a storytelling medium in its own right. My stories explore my fascination with the Mid-century period and often feature recurring interests, including the Sixties as unresolved political flashpoints; the counterculture, psychedelics, and social change; dream states and visions of utopia/dystopia; as well as themes relating to race and gender. Rather than viewing this period as a static historical artifact to be viewed from an objective present, my fictions explore contemporary as well as historical themes by using this period as more of a shape-shifting historical mirror.
68.6 × 101.6, Editions 1-6 of 6 - $5,000;
33 × 50.8, Editions 1-6 of 6 - $2,500