Laura Letinsky’s photographs of forgotten details such as wrapping paper, plastic containers, styrofoam cups, leftover food, and found trinkets, remark upon these remnants of daily subsistence and pleasure. Untitled #19 draws on a range of pictorial sources from Martha Stewart Living, Dwell, Good Housekeeping, Ikea catalogues, and family albums to 17th century Dutch-Flemish and early 20th century still life painting. Formally, through control and chaos, the domestic scenes she photographs are redolent with the allure of domesticity (safety, comfort, familiarity) as well as the danger (boredom, satiation, lack of desire). Letinsky explores photography’s transformative quality, changing what is typically overlooked into something splendid in its resilience.
Laura Letinsky is a professor at the University of Chicago, Department of Visual Arts and holds a BFA from the University of Manitoba and an MFA from Yale University School of Art. She has exhibited at the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography (Ottawa), Casino Luxembourg, Galerie m Bochum (Germany), the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Nederlands Foto Institute, and the Renaissance Society (Chicago). Her work can be found in numerous collections: the Art Institute of Chicago, the J.P. Getty Museum (Los Angeles), and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Publications include After All, Hardly More Than Ever, Blink, Venus Inferred, and Now, Again. Letinsky has received grants from the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, the Illinois Arts Council, the Anonymous Was A Woman Foundation, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Manitoba Arts Council.