┐ Kevin Van Aelst └

I don’t usually post on photographers whose work is being highlighted by other photography bloggers, since people who visit this place are often the same. I like to offer something else, and for that I trust my own parallel research. There are times like this when I shred that “rule” to pieces given the impact the work has on me. Here’s Kevin’s work, found in Lenscratch

© Kevin Van Aelst, Tragedies, 2009

© Kevin Van Aelst, Cemetery, 2010

Artist Kevin Van Aelst is not one to cry over spilled milk. More likely, Van Aelst has “spilled” the milk himself and is diligently coaxing the white drops into a semblance of order. Van Aelst’s specialty is something he calls “conceptual photography.” His large color prints are treats for the eye; Van Aelst’s strong design sense is garnering him increasing commercial work. But what engages Van Aelst more than the act of photography is the play of ideas and their realization in visual form.
“Something very important to me is the idea of randomness, taking something that should be random and applying a very specific order to it,” says Van Aelst.
(…)
“If conceptual art didn’t exist, I wouldn’t have any interest in making art. I respond much more to ideas than purely visual things,” Van Aelst says. His overarching idea is the use of everyday objects and materials to illustrate and represent more profound concepts. Milk spills in a logarithmic spiral. Gummy worms represent human chromosomes and gummy bears make up the periodic table. Hair in the bottom of a sink is arranged in the graph of a human heartbeat. An Oreo cookie’s cream filling is cut away to reveal the yin yang symbol.
Hearkening back to his undergraduate studies in psychology, Van Aelst recalls that he took classes in cognition and perception – how people view stimuli differently. Much of his work operates on two levels of perception, the conceptual and the material. Referring to his photograph “Periodic Table of the Elements,” now part of the permanent collection of the Wadsworth Atheneum, Van Aelst has found there is the viewer “who sees gummy bears and has to read the title to see the periodic table and (the viewer) who sees the periodic table and has to get real close to see that they’re gummy bears.”

source: article by Hank Hoffman

More of his work here

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