Reclining with Machines 2/10

Edition of 10 ~ 27×40 inches


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  • From a limited edition of 10 archival photographs
  • Signed and numbered by artist Aaron Knight
  • Image: 26.7×40 inches/68×102 cm
  • Paper: 28.7×42 inches/73×107 cm


Beautiful bizarre nude

This beautiful bizarre nude photograph depicts a woman laying in a long-abandoned machine repair shop at a decommissioned naval base in Charleston, South Carolina (US). The paradoxical juxtaposition of a pin-up model in the gritty, dilapidated environment is a commentary on incongruity in our modern world. Pieces of conduit that were once on the ceiling now lie on the floor. In this image, there is a plethora of menacing shapes, yet the character seems oblivious to the hazards of her surroundings.

Somber greens and blues dominate the background. Although this backdrop is dark, it holds a remarkable amount of detail. Steely gray highlights reveal curves and lines. Murky shadows hint at unknown depths. These textures and lines behind the reclining woman invite the eye to explore. The tubes are tangled and bent at odd angles that vaguely mimic the limbs of the figure. A distant wall gives a feeling of a spacious but confined area.

The palette of the figure is a contrasting light shade of peach. Her skin is virtually uninterrupted by any pronounced texture. Although she occupies a minority of the frame, the reclining nude is the dominant element. The nude female form is one viewers readily recognize in any environment and especially amongst the unfamiliar shapes. But, she is also a bright shining expanse of vivid color with the gritty surroundings serving to underscore her radiance. Viewers are invited to think about this display of nude beauty not in spite of the bizarre surroundings, but especially because of them.

Her feet, legs, and buttocks are covered with filth from the floor. This is a reminder of human rituals of hygiene and a loathing to disrupt them. The paradoxical combination imparts an amusing mood. Yet, there is something beautiful about a bizarre nude photograph that juxtaposes these concepts.

The composition is an enigma: a collection of unknowable parts, providing mostly questions and few answers.


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