Jon Setter is a photomedia artist who was born in Detroit (1989). His photography is a formally nuanced response to the urban spaces and architecture he encounters. Presenting perspectives not normally visualised of mundane and ordinary aspects in order to alter audience perceptions of what they can reflect.
Jon Setter is a photomedia artist who was born in Detroit (1989) and is currently based between Sydney and New York City. He received a bachelor’s degree from the College for Creative Studies in Detroit and graduated with an MFA from The National Art School, Sydney. His photography is a formally nuanced response to the urban spaces and architecture he encounters. Often working with subjects discovered by chance on unprescribed walks, he attempts to reveal the unseen aspects people pass by and use daily but may not consciously observe.
His aim is to present an alternate perspective of cities that isn’t typically visualized to expand how audiences might read the spaces they interact with most often. This stems from being influenced by the New Topographic Movement and the Dusseldorf School of Photography.
He has exhibited work in numerous solo and group shows across Australia and internationally including New York City, Tokyo and Berlin. He has just completed his second photobook ‘The Ballarat Text’ and is working on a Sydney-centric series due to be released next year.
- Publishing two photo books of my work
- Finalist in the Luxembourg Art Prize
- Completing my MFA at National Art School
What medium do you work with, and why have you chosen them?
I work predominately in photomedia. I chose this as my type of art as it's the best way for me to translate my experience of the world for an audience. I also previously tried many mediums, but this is the one that felt right and I was strongest in. So I kept pursuing photography.
How does your artwork get from initial concept to exhibition stage?
My process of creation is quite long. It starts with me thinking of a city or place I'd like to document. I then research what elements in the urban terrain that make it unique and talk about its character and history. Once I arrive at that place I spend weeks walking and shooting a ton. I need particular light to shoot in so I can't always take shots each day of a trip. Once I created enough images I begin the editing process to figure out which works I'll be exhibiting and publishing. When they are selected I refine the photos to get them print ready. Overall this process could take years to get a complete series from concept to exhbition.
Can you tell us a little more about your creative working environment/studio?
My studio is the urban environment. All of my work is created outside. When I'm editing I work in a artist collective studio space in Alexandria. It's an old event space with 15 other artists. My desk is in an old commercial kitchen and freezer. I have my monitors and printer set up there to do tests. When I make prints for exhibitions I work with a printer in their studio.