Lucas Blalock

Lucas Blalock, Florida, 1989 – Florida, 1989 at Eva Presenhuber and Rodolphe Janssen, New York

Lucas Blalock’s work is both minimal and extravagant. His two largest solo exhibitions – Florida 1989 at Eva Presenhuber Gallery and Rodolphe Janssen Gallery in New York – showcase images that combine object and space.

As with other artists who opt out of analogue media, Blalock uses historical strategies but rejects abstraction. He seeks to link Photoshop tools back to their physicality by employing calculated ham-fistedness in order to expose digital photography processes.

Early Life and Education

Lucas Blalock was only 10 when he lost his thumb during an unfortunate incident on Disney World’s “Pirates of the Caribbean” ride. Although experimental surgery successfully replaced it with his big toe, the experience left him disillusioned and searching for ways to make sense out of absurdity.

Working both analogue and digitally, Blalock uses photography of still lifes, domestic scenes and portraits that he then modifies using Photoshop’s distortion tools and other software programs to rework digitally. While other artists attempt to hide their creative processes by concealing digital modifications as part of their artistic practice, Blalock proudly flaunts his digital modifications which has garnered him great acclaim from critics in the art world.

He subverts space and object as in Robert Cummings, takes inspiration from advertising colors and tropes like Roe Ethridge or Elad Lassry, and turns dime store trinkets designed to project sunny childish optimism into objects of discomfort and anxiety.

Professional Career

Lucas Blalock subverts photography’s normative framework by exploiting its puritanic confines while challenging groups of conservative men or himself with his trademark brand of fake masculinity. His 2009 image “The Contender” shows him shirtless and disheveled against an unseen challenger.

Blalock’s mesmerizing images begin as large-format photographs and then undergo cuts, distortions and overlaps in Photoshop for further manipulation. His prints range from disconcerting portraits to strange still lifes that evoke both libidinal energies and supernatural presences.

Followers of Bertolt Brecht would recognize his belief in an art that exposes its labor; Blalock takes inspiration from this principle when using Photoshop to emphasize rather than hide his edits. His crude applications reveal the unavoidable artifice inherent to all photographs; using 3D features of Photoshop software he is able to reshape and inflate subjects like shape shifters.

Achievement and Honors

Lucas Blalock creates works that bridge analog and digital technologies. Utilizing large-format cameras, he captures still lifes and domestic scenes before digitally augmenting them in Photoshop. While other artists use software invisibly, he makes his edits obvious – drawing inspiration from Bertolt Brecht’s advocacy of theater with visible mechanisms. He has shown work at Peder Lund Gallery in Oslo; Ramiken Crucible Gallery in New York and White Cube in London in solo exhibitions. His work can be found in prominent collections including those at the Museum of Modern Art in New York; Metropolitan Museum of Art; Guggenheim Museum New York and Hammer Museum Los Angeles as well as featured prominent group exhibitions.

His explorations with 3D modeling have led him to create pieces with darkly humorous elements, like his installation at the 2019 Whitney Biennial which features three depictions of a donkey created using various forms of digital manipulation.

Personal Life

Lucas Blalock creates works that combine analogue and digital processes in his art practice. Utilizing large-format cameras to capture domestic scenes, still lifes, and portraits; then augmenting them digitally using Photoshop; he embraces his digital modifications as part of his working process rather than trying to hide them away.

He is inspired by the mechanisms of photography and, following in Bertolt Brecht’s footsteps in terms of theatrical production, seeks to reveal its inner workings through his art. His editing often has an unsettling or crude sense of humor; in Florida 1989, for instance, an incident from when Blalock lost his thumb at Disney World is shown as a Brechtian reflection on its effects and aftermath.

Net Worth

Lucas Blalock’s eye-catching still lifes contain intriguing details as you continue to study them, such as plastic-wrapped raw hot dogs or watermelons covered with human fingertips. Based in New York City, this artist uses both analog and digital technologies to map, meld, and reconstitute photographic objects and images into new forms.

Blalock’s unsettling portraits, scenes, and still lives contain an undercurrent of humor that provides a relief to his dark works. Furthermore, unlike other artists who conceal their digital manipulations within photographs as part of their artworks, Blalock displays his changes prominently within each photograph in order to demonstrate their process and showcase how he manipulates images digitally.

He has had solo exhibitions at both the Institute of Contemporary Art Los Angeles and Galerie Eva Presenhuber in Zurich, among other venues. Additionally, his works can be found in prominent collections like those held by Dallas Museum of Art, Guggenheim Museum and Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *