For his newest series, artist Ion Zupcu follows previous bodies of work in which he photographed sheets of paper and painted wooden cubes. For “Sculptures,” Zupcu continues to employ the simplest of means, and here he manipulates paper sheets and colored backdrops to create small sculptural scenes that he shoots in natural studio light. However, the results are far from obvious.
In this body of work, Zupcu represents art images distilled to their most basic forms and shapes. Some of the “sculptures” are inspired by memories of real artworks, while others are completely imagined. The resulting photographs are spare and precise, though the creative process is not so straightforward. Responding to what he sees, hears, reads, and enjoys, the artist utilizes sketches to inform the entire process from the initial impression to the final print. Zupcu works with his hands both in front of and behind the camera, but ultimately feels “that the final image is fundamentally still life photography.”
Many of these new pieces take on a whimsical tone with the use of vivid color and titles that clue the viewer in to some of his inspirations. One work, simply titled “Cloud,” shows a rounded pink shape against a blue backdrop. Another nods to classical sculpture with an abstracted representation of the female form, titled after the mythological goddess Venus.