Surrational Images

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Surrational Images

Scott Mutter

Publisher: University of Illinois PressFormat: Hardcover

Photomontage, the combining of two or more negatives, can be traced back to the 1850s. Scott Mutter is a modern master of the art. His subtle images have enthralled viewers in exhibitions and galleries, mainly in the Midwest, for a decade. “The response has been overwhelming”, curator Martin Krause commented of an exhibition at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. "I've had people calling me on the telephone telling me what a great show this is. That happens so rarely. For whatever reason, Scott's work is connecting with people". In the past year his work has attracted attention nationwide, and his posters are now available in galleries from coast to coast. Richly and immediately accessible, yet deeply resonant, Mutter's photomontages provoke strong responses: curiosity, awe, laughter, and then contemplation. They are creative fusions of elements that draw us irresistibly to look again at what first appears unbelievable. Boundaries dissolve miraculously; the impossible becomes seductively tangible. But the logic of his images is exact, reasoned - in his own term, “surrational”. Although his work shares the recursive wit of Rene Magritte and M. C. Escher, Mutter never relies simply upon ironic effects. With precision and authority his art explores the ideals and mythologies of our culture, history, language, and art, both lamenting and celebrating contemporary civilization. “From the very beginning”, states Mutter, "I tried to make images that people would find accessible and exciting. Art is no idle thing; people want to see something and be held in wonder". In short, he is a master at turning a glance into a gaze. In his foreword Martin Krause reviews the hundred-year history ofphotomontage and examines Mutter's unparalleled influence within that tradition.

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