In Sound Affects New York based photographer Christian Patterson celebrates the artifice of an atmosphere in large C-prints. Tacky bars bathed in neon light and kitsch decor, trinkets collecting dust, and destinations like Skateland that conjure a sense of nostalgia. Christian Patterson guides us in the footsteps of a stranger, a subject that is never revealed but leaves their footprint across a surreal urban terrain.
Why did you decide to pursue your artistic practice on the East Coast?
I was born, raised and educated in the Midwest but often traveled to New York during my college years and fell in love with the place, its energy and its art. After completing my studies I moved to New York, and I’ve been there on and off ever since. It’s great being part of New York’s artistic community and having access to its world-class galleries, museums and bookstores.
Why not Los Angeles?
I love California – its climate, its landscape, its flora and food, and I’d love to live there someday. I’m having a solo exhibition at Rose Gallery in Santa Monica in February 2013 and very much looking forward to spending more time in California. I’m planning to see lots of art and hit the Apple Pan, In and Out, Pink’s, Roscoe’s…
What do you find distracting about your urban environment?
I live in Brooklyn and spend most of my time at home or in my studio, which is only three blocks away from my home. When I do go out, I’m looking for action and distractions, mainly in the form of fun with friends, a good meal or a great art show.
What do you feel is unique to your city?
The people. New York is amazingly, wildly diverse and its people are its greatest strength.
What do you find most appealing about Los Angeles?
What artists have influenced your practice the most?
I spent my formative years working as William Eggleston’s assistant and archivist. In my early years as an artist I worked through the visual aspect of his influence. I’m beyond all that now, but there are plenty of other things I learned from him that stick with me today. Another person is David Lynch. As I write this, I’m sitting on a plane to Paris, where I hope to meet him. He’s just selected some of my work for inclusion in Paris Photo Seen by David Lynch,” a special program and publication at the 2012 Paris Photo exposition.
Images courtesy of the artist
THE 20+20 PHOTOGRAPHY ISSUE
Christian Patterson is featured within Installation Magazine’s special 20+20 Photography Issue, which highlighted 20 Los Angeles and 20 New York City photographers. Download the full issue on your iPad and iPhone.