museumuesum

THE INTERSECTIONS OF ABSTRACTION, TEXT & LANGUAGE, POST-MODERNIST AESTHETICS, EXPERIMENTAL, PERFORMATIVE, MULTI-MEDIA APPROACHES TO ARTMAKING // ORIGINAL CONTENT SELECTED BY JONATHAN WEISKOPF, BROOKLYN, NY

Pieter Hugo

photographs from the series There’s a Place in Hell for Me and My Friends

2011-2012

Archival pigment ink prints on Warmtone Baryta Fibre paper, 46 x 37cm

Pieter Hugo’s There’s a Place in Hell for Me and My Friends is a series of close-up portraits of the artist and his friends, all of whom call South Africa home. Through a digital process of converting colour images to black and white while manipulating the colour channels, Hugo emphasizes the pigment (melanin) in his sitters’ skins so they appear heavily marked by blemishes and sun damage. The resulting portraits are the antithesis of the airbrushed images that determine the canons of beauty in popular culture, and expose the contradictions of racial distinctions based on skin colour. As the critic Aaron Schuman writes, “although at first glance we may look ‘black’ or ‘white’, the components that remain ‘active’ beneath the surface consist of a much broader spectrum. What superficially appears to divide us is in fact something that we all share, and like these photographs, we are not merely black and white - we are red, yellow, brown, and so on; we are all, in fact, coloured.”

Tamsyn Reynolds, 2011

Michael Cleary, 2011

Vanessa Inggs, 2012

Dan Halter, 2011 

Montle Moorosi, 2011

Trasi Henen, 2011 

Bradley Abrahams, 2011

Yasser Booley, 2011

Pieter Hugo, 2011

Victoria Jane Peters, 2012 

(Source: museumuesum)

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