Our homes are cacophonies of color inside if not out, whatever our picture-perfect idea of organized interiors with crisp, mess-free architectural lines and complimentary shades may be. If you cannot beat it, join it – like this artist who organized her entire set of worldly belongings by color and shades, from rich blue, red, orange, yellow and pink to bright white, dull gray and dark black.
Once sorted into similar tones, the patterns of color that emerge are amazing. Images of the resulting scenes seem less like photographs and more like paintings – we are simply not used to seeing that density of objects in the same part of the spectrum all in one place.
Of course, to keep the results as clean and complimentary as possible, it was necessary for artist Helga Steppan to also create a collection of everything that simply did not fit into a single color family or another. This collage of unlike colors is nonetheless a compelling epilogue to the deep hues of the single-color scenes.
Finally, there is the gray-scale range – the whites look spray-painted, the grays look like the result of a poorly-shot photograph and the blacks bring out amazing contrasts from the few exceptions to their darkness in the image. So what does it all mean? Maybe monochromatic organizing is just a beautiful way to compose images, but perhaps this kind of organization is another way to look at what we own and see these material belongings in a new (and colorful) light.
“Helga Steppan finished her Master at Royal College of Art in London (2004), which was the beginning of her creative practice as a visual artist and academic. In her artistic practice she works with the photographic media and process together with installations and sculpture and elements of performance. Steppan’s work deals with topics around participation, identification, abstraction and reproduction, where she is interested in the interplay – or space – between the two dimensional and three dimensional, both as a visual, spatial and site-specific experience.”
“She uses an investigative identification process through research of gathering and ordering, where everyday objects, people and situations interact to evoke experiences. Aiming to playfully demonstrate a process of psychological realms of memories and associations of the ordered world of systems and classifications, but rather than referring to known classifications associated with museum and sciences, she uses her own personal criteria, which reflects how we experience, understand and investigate the world around us.”