Foto Fix: Myoung Ho Lee
Myoung Ho Lee photographs solitary trees, framed against white canvas backdrops in the middle of natural landscapes. Like stage settings in nature - they beautifully isolate and highlight the shape of the tree. To install the large canvases, which span approximately 60 by 45 feet, the artist enlists a production crew and heavy cranes. Minor components of the canvas support system, such as ropes or bars, are later removed from the photograph through minimal digital retouching, creating the illusion that the backdrop is floating behind the tree.
His works include diverse species of trees photographed with a 4×5 camera in a variety of seasons and at different times of day. Mr. Lee allows the tree’s natural surroundings to fill the frame around the canvas, transforming the backdrop into an integral part of the subject. The canvas defines the form of the tree and separates it from the environment. By creating a partial, temporary outdoor studio for each tree, Mr. Lee’s “portraits” of trees play with ideas of scale and perception while referencing traditional painting and the history of photography.
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