FotoFest Exhibitions

Asha Schechter

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Asha Schechter assembles found and made images to explore the ambiguities of representation. Each of his photographs is composed of pictures culled from a variety of sources — high school publications, community newspapers, pictures of the artist’s own making — positioned onto a plane that is formed from the abstracted enlargement of a fragment of an image seen in the foreground. He frequently depicts the new age communities of Northern California, the alternative culture of his upbringing about which he continues to hold ambivalence. The artist creates with his work a realm for psychological and creative investigation. By stressing the physical artifact of assembled photographic imagery — emphasizing variations of material property and reproduction — Schechter paradoxically proposes infinite malleability in imagery’s purpose and meaning. “It becomes like a zooming in and out on the photographs,” he describes of his practice, “suggesting that if one were to continue to look further or more closely there would be other images that are not visible. The narrative then is not limited to the editing choices I have made, but is left relatively open.” Rejecting the conception of a photograph as a frame for direct registration of empirical observation, he emphasizes the evidence of imagery’s production itself. In the pixilated realm of digital photography, imagery’s free-floating provisions suggest radical revisions of our understanding of experience, including a greater discursive acknowledgment of the forces of cultural context. Thus Schechter raises a last consideration, “[Will] this nostalgic relationship with photographic materials continue into the digital age?”


Asha Schechter lives and works in Los Angeles. He received his B.F.A. from the California College of Art, San Francisco (2001) and his M.F.A. from University of California, Los Angeles (2009). His work has been shown at a number of exhibition spaces including Marvelli Gallery and Spencer Brownstone Gallery, both in New York; The San Francisco Arts Commission; and the Wight Gallery in Los Angeles.