Nicole White was born next door to “America’s Hometown,” Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1980. Her New Englander roots have heavily informed her practice via a serious preoccupation with American history and the depiction of the American landscape. These interests have led her to investigate how landscape imagery is constructed and employed to connote specific meaning. Nicole received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2012 after completing her MA in Art History from the University of Connecticut in 2010. Her work has been exhibited in galleries and institutions in Boston, New York, and Chicago. This September, she will have her first solo exhibition at Gallery UNO in Chicago.
“This series is the result of an investigation of traditional compositional tools and how those tools are perceived. Through picking a familiar subject matter and creating a photographic image reminiscent of that imagery, the photographs illustrate how ingrained certain modes of looking are in contemporary society. The photographs are created through multiple camera-less processes employing the most basic tools: sun, water, soot, silver, paper, and glass. Stripping down the photographic process to these elements allowed for the introduction of my hand in the work. The resultant images are of my own making; there is no “actual” place. The images then raise questions regarding what is actually being depicted.
The title, A Thousand Plateaus, is taken from the 1980 book of the same name by Deleuze and Guattari. This book describes the application of various mapping structures onto the landscape a means to maintain power. These images speak to that mapping and loss of control through its placelessness, voids, and interruptions on the photographic surface. In a much more immediate reference, the title also points to the place an artist would view a landscape from in order to paint it.”