Foto8 Print Room
3 November 2011 – 19 January 2012
Chloe Sells ~ Closer than Known

A selection of work from Chloe Sells’ body of work, Closer than Known, will launch Foto8’s new Print Room. The seven framed and one unframed photographs are available to purchase and mark the first in a series of small exhibitions that will be periodically changed over.


Artist’s Statement

Land, where our memories subsist and our history is born, exerts a subtle power over us. As a landscape encompasses and implicates its viewer. My purpose is to use this potential to form meaning through nostalgia, the sublime and the exotic.

Most of the landscapes and plants that we interact with, from what we eat, to the trees in the park, are transplanted, cultivated and non-native. Each of the trees in Closer Than Known has a different provenance and some exist in a place different to that of their origin. The relationship between the trees’ derivation and my own associations to those places is fundamental to their being chosen for this body of work. Thus, in a broader sense, the varied topography mirrors the migrations and movements of people, with the human reshaping of the natural world from its ‘original’ state to its current condition of layered and perpetual permutations.

While considering origins, the forest and its canopy of trees becomes apt as the place, whether in truth or fable, we came from. Birds, symbolic of migration, still know trees as their home. Through their movements they symbolise more than one place and the intermingling of origins and destinations. In Closer Than Known, the birds represent temporality and its inexorable presence, and in their decomposition suggest flight.

For me the physicality of land runs parallel to the physicality inherent in my darkroom interface, which enables me to interact with the place represented in each image on my own terms and to reflect on my relationships and experiences. Each outcome is unique. I use geometric angles and constructed planes to suggest our interference with nature and the desire to control the uncontrollable. As a result of this artifice, the landscapes within each of these images wonder if they are real or imagined.


Chloe Sells was born in Aspen, Colorado and began photographing in 1993. She attended the Rhode Island School of Design, from which she graduated in 2000 and received a BFA in photography with honors. For two years thereafter, she worked at Anderson Ranch in Aspen, Colorado with Terri Weifenbach, John Gossage, Donald Sultan and Ann Lauterbach. She was personal assistant to Hunter S. Thompson for two years preceding his death. She recently completed her Masters in Fine Art at Central St. Martins and lives between London and Botswana. These photographs are darkroom C-type prints, most commonly in series of 5 or editions of 9.

Foto8 Print Room
Lower Ground Floor
1 Honduras Street
London EC1Y 0TH