In This Moment 在这片刻 - photo works by John Monteith
Untitled (Along the Bahe River) 5, 2018, inkjet on canvas, 165cmx140cm
As Beijing undergoes massive structural changes and swift redevelopment of its political, cultural and spatial dynamics, Monteith has spent the last four years documenting the disappearing neighborhoods along the Bahe river. While focusing on the quotidian, heavily textured surfaces and provisionally placed materials bear the trace of time.
These close observations are photographed, then digitally punctured, layered and shifted. Adjusting for focus and opacity, Monteith formally constructs each image in reference to a double exposure, each photographic construction lingering within the intersection of past and present. Images dislocated from their surroundings, while concealing as much as they reveal, ask for a response that measures reflection with meaning.
exhibition view, In This Moment, 2018
As photographic compositions, this body of work not only documents corners of the city which go often unnoticed but interprets urban space as contingent and constructed. Through referencing issues of temporality, ephemerality, disappearance, and indexicality Monteith gives space new form, perspective and weight. Functioning intertextually, with physical references to drawing, painting and weaving, this exhibition connects the interior of the gallery to the city beyond.