ON VIEW AT Le Méridien Columbus, The Joseph
The photographs on view belong to photographer Alec Soth’s series Songbook, which began in 2015 as a collaborative project between Alec and his friend and writer Brad Zellar. Zellar explains, “We’d been talking and thinking about community and people’s search for real-world connection in a country where loneliness seems increasingly to be an epidemic more corrosive than the popular culture that fuels it...We wanted to see how folks were faring outside the ersatz, isolating communities of office hives and cyberspace.”
Alec Soth was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1969 and it is from his base there that he ventures out. The photographs on view are products of road trips across the United States where curious meander and happenstance have been aided by lists of possible subjects attached to steering wheels. Soth has photographed brides at Niagara Falls, hermits living off the grid, proms in the Cleveland Browns stadium, and casts of characters living along the Mississippi River. These images of people and places are clear but partial notes, creating an inconclusive and exceptional narrative of a peculiar but deeply American life.
Mie Olise makes work that considers architecture, society, destruction, ruins, and man’s role in the shape of places. The three paintings on view are representations of places that have been caught up in the tragedies of history, conflict, and change. To Circle Around is part of a series of works that investigate abandoned fishing villages in the Arctic Circle. The building on silts seems teetering in chaotic instability, left to succumb to a stormy and desolate environment. Niels Bohrs Institute and Auditorium A – Pink Bench both return to the location of a 1941 meeting between the physicists Niels Bohr and Werner Heisenberg in which the two, once colleagues, split over the moral, scientific, and political questions surrounding research into the atomic bomb. The agitated paint application and the ruinous state of the places depicted reflects the tumult of the war years and the result of man’s inhumanity to man and the dropping of the atomic bomb over Hiroshima in 1945.
Olise holds an MFA from Central St. Martins in London and a Master in Architecture from Aarch, Aarhus(DK)//The Bartlett, UCL, London (UK). In recent years she has been based between London, New York and Copenhagen; travelling to recidencies in Iceland, Berlin and Skowhegan, Maine.