Letha Wilson seeks common ground
Ahead of the unveiling of a new commission to be displayed at Mackage stores in New York and Paris, this video visits Letha Wilson in her studio. Living and working between the frenetic pace of New York and the rural calm of upstate, his work intertwines these two worlds and embraces the moments they press against each other. “I often think of materials that have this dual relationship between construction, humans, architecture and nature”, comments the artist, “like a 2×4 from a tree, or a drywall made of stones crushed and paper”.
This kind of transformation is at the heart of the artist’s new collaboration with Mackage, for which details of large American landscapes are abstracted and reframed in a series of sculptural compositions incorporating original photographs. The works first exist as model cards that Wilson carefully cuts, distorts and reconstructs for display in successive seasons: fall, then winter.
For the final in-store displays of each season, these experiences are transferred to steel sheets that are finished with industrial techniques such as drilling and bending. “It’s fascinating to me that a photograph has a whole life after its printing”, she adds, “it opens up all these possibilities which dialogue with the original image”. Ultimately, the meaning of the images comes from the viewer: “people bring with them their own experience of the landscape”.