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Mark Lyon
Landscapes for the People

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Mark Lyon, Stewart Airport, Baggage Claim A, Archival pigment print, 2008/2012, Edition 2/8, Signed verso.

Artist Statement
The series Landscapes for the People looks at the use of romanticized wallpaper landscape photographs found in everyday environments. These wall sized photographic murals seem to serve a psychological function, given their potentially intimidating or banal locations, like dental rooms and Laundromats. These landscape murals allow the viewer an alternate mindset to nerve-racking procedures or the mundane activities of everyday life.

Wallpaper scenes depict grandiose views of snowcapped mountains, woodland streams, daisy fields, seascapes, and tropical beaches. These are, perhaps, the places we would rather be. They act to heighten our own daydreams with an idyllic panoramic view that envelops our line of sight.

Elements of wear, installation approach, printing process, and wall fixtures allow the viewer insight into the photographic facade. The wallpaper can be seen in numerous conditions of wear. The power of the sun, and fluorescents, leave a mark of time through a draining of color. Seams of the paneled murals create a fracturing of the landscape. The seams fold, bend, tear and are taped back together. In other instances, the texture of the underlying wall reveals itself onto the surface of the landscape.

The curious pairing of landscape and objects encourages the viewer into a closer inspection of their true relationship. This inspection discloses the actual location and purpose of such spaces. But, even after the truth of these photographs is revealed, we may find that our own daydreams allow this pairing to feel authentic.

Photographs from Landscapes for the People use the peculiar relationship between found images and operative items. The resulting photographs of these locations document the strange play of the functional environment and the idealized psychological landscape.

Artist Bio
Mark Lyon was born in 1979 in Rochester, NY and he grew up in the suburbs just outside of Rochester. His undergraduate studies began at the School of Visual Arts after being accepted with Rhodes and Faculty Scholarships. He completed his undergraduate degree at State University of New York, New Paltz in 2003 and his MA in 2008.

Mark has been the recipient of a Fellowship from The Center for Photography at Woodstock in 2008, a runner-up for the 2009 Aperture Portfolio Prize, and selected to be in the Top 50 for Critical Mass 2011. His work has been in numerous photography and culture publications including Lotto, SOUP, Chronogram, Blow, and EXIT magazines. His photographs have been shown at Aperture, Pulse NY, Art Chicago, Winkleman Gallery, Photo Center Northwest, Newspace Center for Photography, Rayko Photo Center, and The Center for Photography at Woodstock. Mark’s work is also in the permanent collection of the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art.