Mona Kuhn is an American artist &photographer best known for her large-scale, nude photographs. She depicts human body producing a sensational effect: one may be naked but totally comfortable in the skin they live in.

 

What Makes Her Special

Mona Kuhn is an American artist & photographer best known for her large-scale, nude photographs. She depicts human body producing a sensational effect: one may be naked but totally comfortable in the skin they live in. There is an exquisite play of light and shadows in her works. Kuhn’s approach lies in forming close bonds with her subjects which begets a range of effects – of intimacy and spontaneity, naturalness and serenity.

poemsMona Kuhn‘s work is renowned as it has been included in the collections of museums across the USA – in Boston, Cincinnati, Georgia, Los Angeles, Miami, North Carolina, San Diego, and of course NYC. As far as it takes Europe, Kuhn’s artwork has been exhibited at the Royal Academy of Art in London, Le Louvre and Centre d’art Contemporain at Musée Chaleroi in France, Musée de l’Élysée in Switzerland, Deichtorhallen in Hamburg, the Leopold Museum in Vienna, and the Australian Center for Photography in Sydney.

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At a given moment she is an independent scholar at The Getty Research Institute in LA.

 

Bio shortlist

Born and bred until 20 in São Paulo, Brazil, Kuhn cannot but turns her mind to her motherland. Working on Native started as a journey back home. Another 20 years passed before she came there. She imagined a bird flying to the forest in search for its childhood nest. Dreaming and searching, what Mona found was not home but the traces of her past. It was empty. Yet, the journey abounded with new affinities and discoveries made along the way. Native is her third photobook, presenting itself as a narrative of a dream. Part of the photographs were captured in the rainforest, so the images are bathed in deep green and golden hues.

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Tom Hiddlestone and Thandie Newton, currently starring at The Westworld. are posing for the W Magazine which is on the list of her commissions. In 2012 she was chosen to shoot Cruise ad campaign by Bottega Veneta, Vogue Italy. Here are the words from its creative director Tomas Maier:

“In this campaign I wanted to express a sense of closeness – the kind of intimacy that is at the core of Mona’s images. Her accurate approach to light and color and the freshness of her images perfectly adjust to the mood of the season. I am very happy with the images we have realized together.”

Her curatorial projects include the 2015/2016 edition of The Billboard Creative. Its main idea becomes clear in just 7 artist’s words: “I want to stop traffic, with art.” Her goal is to bring the exhibition out to the streets of her city of residence, so that LA itself ”becomes the backdrop and context beyond the walls of this larger museum.”  Starting from one billboard, the project has proliferated beyond all points. So, here and now, TBC and Mona Kuhn are announcing the largest-scale exhibition ever, including 33 selected artists – both newbies and “old school”.

 

Gimme Art Instead Of Ads

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A billboard exhibition is a big challenge for its makers, as it demands fighting for the public attention in a bustling life of an urban city. The first step Mona took was to observing traffic in one of the central crossroads and examining its audience driving behavior. Two situations were studied: of the audience driving by or stuck on a jam. In the first case, the intention was to grab people’s attention aback using visually powerful graphic works, pieces of art easy to digest on-the-go.

In the second, worst-case scenario, she was seeking artworks that were able to “teleport”, take one away in a moment from the hideous jam, making it possible for the viewer to “mentally escape the traffic”. The selected collection of works includes different materials and techniques, be it the handmade knitted (sic!) sculpture, pastel shaded watercolor paintings or, vice versa, neon splashes of colors in abstracts.

“It is exciting to see your artwork reproduced large on a billboard, in a proper area of Los Angeles, where 100,000 to 200,000 pass by every day,” – says Mona.

 

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