The urban space is striking. Its tall and mysterious buildings, crowds of anonymous people, the endless sea of concrete constantly intrigue me. City Space is an ongoing photographic exploration of the urban environment and my perception of it. I am interested in the physical space of the city and its emotional and psychological impact on the body. These photographs reconstruct mundane events in the city that I have personally experienced or witnessed in public. Stark light, deep shadow, and muted color are visual strategies I explore to describe the city. I use the city as a stage and transform the physical space into a psychological one.
Rooted in the actions of the pedestrian, City Space rethinks the genre of street photography, imaging it anew. By analyzing the work of street photographers I deciphered their photographic language to use as a conceptual vehicle for my own work. So I wander the streets for hours, observing life, making snapshots, taking note of people, locations, and lighting. I record experiences in my sketchbook, and these aid in structuring the final photograph. By recreating a scene, rather than recording a scene as it happens, I come closer to imaging the experience of the monument. I am not documenting the street, but rather depicting the emotional and psychological experiences of city life. The images I create do not represent a commonality of experience but instead provide a personal interpretation of the urban landscape.
Clarissa Bonet is a Chicago based artist. Her work explores aspects of the urban space in both a physical and psychological context. She received her M.F.A. in photography from Columbia College Chicago in 2012, and her B.S. in Photography from the University of Central Florida.
Bonet’s work has been exhibited nationally, internationally, and resides in the collections of the University of Michigan Museum of Art, The Museum of Contemporary Photography, the Southeast Museum of Photography, the Haggerty Museum of Art, University Club Chicago, and the JPMorgan Chase Art Collection.
Most recently Bonet has received recognition and support for her work from the Individual Artists Program Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events in 2017. In 2015 she was chosen as one of PDN’s 30 New and Emerging Photographers to Watch and was selected as a 2016 Flash Forward Emerging Photographer by the Magenta Foundation.
Clarissa is represented by the Catherine Edelman Gallery, Chicago. You can see her work
Clarissa Bonet currently has an exhibition titled Urban Constructs in the Fine Arts Center Gallery at Northeastern Illinois University featuring both City Space and her newest body of work, Stray Light. You can download information about it here.