Ascension, by Matthew Smith
After a time, deep in this place I found scenes I seemed to recognise, memories I seemed to own. It was a city and something more, a garden perhaps, or another realm. No matter how far I walked, the paths and the byways never seemed to end. What was I looking for? I knew only that I was looking.
Ascension is Matthew Smith’s latest photoseries. It received an Honourable Mention at the Lucie International Photo Awards 2020, in the Professional Analog/Film: Fine Art category, as well as Honourable Mentions at the Tokyo International Foto Awards 2022 and the Moscow International Foto Awards 2021.
Featuring photographs taken in London, Venice and Tokyo, Ascension explores the hidden territory of the mind and the heart, through the outer world of a hybrid cityscape. Taken during a time of deep instability in Matthew’s life, which included the death of his first wife, the photographs reflect an inner journey that he needed to complete, through fear and grief, to find lasting courage and clarity of mind.
Bringing together street, landscape and abstract photography, to build an integrated world in which reality is open-ended, yet ever-enriching, Ascension moves through light and dark, life and death, to ‘make the darkness visible’.
Ascension is now available to pre-order as a hardback photobook, to be published in Spring 2023 by Red Turtle Photobook. The book includes the full prose-poetry text Matthew wrote to accompany the 46 images that make up the photoseries. Featuring a foreword by Erin Li, visual arts curator at the Whitechapel Gallery, London.
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