Clemens Ascher (b. 1983) has a distinct style. His photographs are graphically reduced, with soft, pleasing colours that act like sweets in a window. Candied compositions draw the viewer in before revealing a sense of artifice through unsettling and unexpected narratives. Works from A Modernist Lunchbreak, for example, depict suited men and women eating lunches in a seeming utopia. The characters look like marionettes – suspended in surreal landscapes, holding anonymous drinks and fast food items. The act of eating is turned into an uncomfortable performance; figures are transfixed, standing alone, gazing blankly ahead. Meanwhile, a glimpse into Ascher’s On Pleasure Grounds proves just as intriguing. Icons of fun fairs, zoos, parks and tourist destinations are recycled and transformed. Hot dogs, rockets and cameras are symbols of leisure, whilst the sterile landscapes provoke disquieting stillness. www.clemensascher.com.
Lead image: Clemens Ascher, from Of Rainbows and Other Monuments. Courtesy of the artist.