How many buildings around the world have such distinctive designs that simply their outline, and nothing else, is enough to identify them?
Artist Jose Dávila has physically cut out, from photographs, 90 of the world’s most famous and beloved buildings and structures, from ancient marvels to contemporary gems. Long interested in the relationship between built space and physical place, Dávila saw that by focusing on just the silhouette of major architectural works, while still within their immediate environment, their grandeur was heightened beyond their undeniable visual allure. Following in the footsteps of his appropriationist forbears from the 1970s and 80s such as Sherrie Levine and Richard Prince, and staking a claim for the hand-produced in today’s digital world, Dávila starts with structures so well-known they’re often taken for granted, and reformats each with a renewed awareness occurring as a result. By cutting the images out by hand, he stays connected to the idea of physically manipulating space—just as architecture itself does.
There is no better way to see how a piece of architecture fits in with its surroundings than to observe its pure white silhouette—the effect allows for a whole new, enlightening experience. A unique appreciation for architectural form and creative genius develops when the viewer is confronted with the blank space where a building used to be, but now, on the page, is not.
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