Monday, November 24, 2008

Penelope Umbrico's Office / Still Lives (as Photocopies)

Appropriation artist Penelope Umbrico's series Office/Still Lives (as Photocopies) consists of :

"a suite of 16, 8” x 10” images taken from an office supply catalog advertising office cubicles. I scanned the catalog images with special attention to the arrangement of objects and photographs on the desks in the cubicles. I then applied the “photocopy” filter in Photoshop to create a fake photocopy document of the fake office environment. The effort to humanize the otherwise dry, cold, emptiness of the represented workspace is played out in the fictional family photographs and plastic plants. The mute computer props punctuate my gridded arrangement, ominously refusing to communicate anything."

Umbrico has a number of interesting projects on her website which are well worth exploring, particularly Broken Sets (eBay), For Sale/TVs From Craigslist, Suns From Flickr and Embarrassing Books. Unfortunately, some of her pieces lose their presence online. I got a chance to see TVs and Suns From Flickr installed at the New York Photo Festival earlier this year and the scale and method of installation is an incredibly important aspect of the work.

All photographs from the series Office / Still Lives (as Photocopies)

All Images © Penelope Umbrico