Street Views by Alice Tye
Starting in Miami and travelling through the southern states of the US before ending in Palm Desert, California, Street View Road Trip explores a variety of American landscapes.
Using only Google Street View for reference, the paintings make use of the distorted perspective created by the revolving camera to create scenes that are both vivid and detailed yet eerily still. The streets are empty, a parked car sits outside a motel, a single car follows in the distance.
The paintings capture the iconic American tropes – the cars, the motels, the wide roads, yet the scenes do not feel idealised or bombastic. They are simply single moments captured in a (virtual) trip.
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Postmortem photography or memento mori, the photographing of a deceased person, was a common practice in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The photographs were considered a keepsake to remember the dead. Child mortality was high during the Victorian era. For many children even a common sickness could be fatal. When a child or other family member died, families would often have a photograph taken before burial. Many times it was the first and last photograph they would ever possess of their loved one. Many postmortem photographs were close-ups of the face or shots of the full body. The deceased were usually depicted to appear as if they were in a deep sleep, or else arranged to appear more life-like. Children were often shown on a couch or in a crib, often posed with a favorite toy. It was not uncommon to photograph very young children with a family member, most frequently the mother. Adults were more commonly posed in chairs or even propped up on something.