Art

Above image: Chromo Thriller #3, 2012 © Miles Aldridge courtesy Huxley-Parlour Gallery

This Side of Paradise is a new exhibition opening today at London’s Huxley-Parlour offering an examination on the aesthetic codes and recurring motifs of suburban life, as told through the opposing lenses of legendary fashion photographer Miles Aldridge and contemporary artist Todd Hido.

 

Stylistically, the pair could hardly differ more, with Aldridge opting for a saccharine and often cinematic depiction that centres on human protagonists as the physical embodiment of their surroundings, while Hido focuses on the suburban vernacular, with his images regularly tapping into a moody, foreboding sense of isolation.

 

#7373, 2008 © Todd Hido courtesy Huxley-Parlour Gallery

Though diametrically opposed, both photographers share a vision so singularly distinct in terms of lighting, composition and colour, that the narrative of each image extends beyond the frame. By drawing upon the legacy of Hitchcock and Lynch, both masters in developing equally distinct forms of psychological tension through simple lighting and framing methods, This Side of Paradise offers a contemporary investigation into the theme of suburbia that builds upon pre-existing visual tropes.

In Hido’s case, visual suspense centres on the mere suggestion of human presence: the tracks of a car or a singular lit window reference themes of isolation and hidden lives that are also evident throughout his ongoing Houses at Night series. Meanwhile for Aldridge, the context of each image feels immediately obvious through his surreal depiction of isolated female protagonists, caught in a stupor, detached yet undoubtedly a part of their meticulously arranged interiors.

Narrative, Cinema and Suburbia in the work of Miles Aldridge and Todd Hido is on at Huxley-Parlour in London Mayfair from 15th November – 15th December 2018.