Lot 52 - Chloe McCarrick - Demeter and Persephone (The Power of a Mother's Love)
Original Papercut Cyanotype / Handmade Paper
Signed on Verso
Curated by Lee Sharrock
Chloe McCarrick is a London based photographer and mixed-media printmaker.
Initially studying fine art and art history, she went on to focus on photography, lens-based media and printmaking. After graduating from university, she moved onto lecturing in photography and interactive media. Working in further/ higher education for almost 8 years before embarking on a full-time career as a practising and exhibiting artist on relocating to London.
Best known for her circular cyanotypes, her work explores the boundless possibilities of image production in the age of modern printmaking with an aim to reinvent, recycle, redefine, experiment and preserve.
Inspired by themes of natural history, influential women and science, Chloe’s work is the subject of extensive research and intrigue, resulting in a fascinating and distinctive portfolio of artworks. Freedom and experimentation are key factors in developing her personal style, through rule-breaking and fusing art forms and techniques together, taking inspiration from traditional approaches of image-making and giving them a contemporary technological twist.
Female empowerment is a recurring theme running throughout her work, constructing visual narratives of the lives of extraordinary, trailblazing women – celebrating their achievements, uncovering their struggles and chronicling the stories of these often unsung heroes.
Chloe McCarrick regularly exhibits internationally, appearing for the past few years at Le Salon Nationale Des Beaux-Arts in Paris, Affordable Art Fair London, New York, Hong Kong, Melbourne and Singapore and The Other Art Fair, curated by Saatchi Art, in London, Los Angeles, Chicago and Brooklyn. Other notable exhibitions include the InPrint- A celebration of British Contemporary Printmakers and Every Woman Biennial London.
Her work is held in the permanent heritage collection for Le Salon Des Beaux Arts foundation in Paris. And she was nominated as a Rising Star for both Saatchi Art/ The Other Art Fair and The Crafts Council UK in 2019, 2020 and 2021.
Chloe McCarrick regularly exhibits internationally, appearing at the prestigious Salon De Beaux Arts in Paris, The Affordable Art Fair in London and New York, and The Other Art Fair, curated by Saatchi Art, in London and Los Angeles.
Statement about Works Submitted for Auction
My work is a visual celebration of female trailblazers and (s)heroes past and present using alternative process photography to create an illuminating memorial honouring these fascinating and often overlooked figures. Shining a vital spotlight on these extraordinary characters, I aim to place women’s history firmly within current historical and cultural narratives by pushing the boundaries of how female photographic portraiture is viewed in the modern world.
Through rule breaking and blending mediums, I use traditional photographic techniques with a contemporary, technological twist- A fusion of science, history and darkroom alchemy. By examining and developing innovative ways of reworking photographic, painted and illustrated images, I use the medium of hand-cut collage, mixed-media print techniques, and the monochromatic colour palette of Prussian blue cyanotypes to create otherworldly, surrealistic portraits suspended deep inside the paper’s surface.
Seeking to record and interpret the perspectives and human experience of my subjects, I shape their stories to construct a layered whole. Using rigorous research rituals- (my methodology of collecting and interpreting data) I document their voices and their visions- their authority, knowledge, struggles and wisdom to create compelling narratives. A rich and resonant means to honour the lives and legacies of women, whose individual and collective accomplishments have enriched our lives.
In rendering them visible, they serve as a totem of strength, these inspirational and empowering figures symbolise emerging hope. The portraits are chronicles of enquiry, evolving through the dialogue between myself as the artist, the subject and the viewer, with an aim to start conversations, break barriers and appeal to intellect and emotion.I hope to inform and inspire by creating narratives that capture the richness, complexity, and dimensionality of human experience in a social and cultural context. Each one leading toward a quest for new understandings and valuable insights, as well as instigating a societal sea change.
“I hope my visual storytelling ignites imaginations and rouses a curiosity to delve deeper and discover more about the lives of these remarkable women. I want people to feel connected, connected to their stories and to notice the unnoticed.”
‘Demeter and Persephone (The Power Of A Mother’s Love).’
In Greek mythology, Demeter is the goddess of the harvest and fertility, and Persephone, her daughter. Often depicted together, showcasing their mother-daughter relationship, and called “The Goddesses,” who both symbolize the planet’s vegetation and seasons.
The story of Demeter and Persephone is often linked to the changing of the seasons and the cycle of life, death, and rebirth. Demeter is often associated with the earth and its bounty, while Persephone's abduction by Hades, god of the underworld, and her return to the earth each year is seen as a metaphor for the seasons and the cycle of growth and decay. This story also symbolises motherhood and the unbreakable bond between a mother and her child.
Demeter’s role as a goddess of agriculture and the earth makes her a symbol of the cycle of life, death and rebirth. Often depicted as a powerful and nurturing figure who is deeply connected to the natural world.
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