Corinne Vionnet, “Makka” (Photo: Hyperallergic)

Have we been here before? Will we all be in this same spot again soon? Smeary visions of famous destinations, from the Golden Gate Bridge to the Colosseum to the Hollywood sign, Corinne Vionnet’s aggregate compositions provoke a puzzling, often beautiful feeling of déjà vu. As in Impressionist paintings, Big Ben resolves amid splotches; Yosemite Valley looms with familiarity. Only the iconic structures clarify out of the gauze, while figures fold into the blur, ghosts in the mist. Yet in the haze there’s an invitation to go on imagining. I may have personally only visited four of the 18 locations on display in Vionnet’s Danziger Gallery exhibition, but I could envision myself in all of them, an unseen face in the crowd or perhaps the one behind the camera, lining up my own personal shot.

In 2005, just as Flickr and other photo-sharing sites where coming into being, Vionnet began to comb the internet in search of repeated, similar-looking photos of the same site, sets she would then layer by the hundreds into hazy composites. Early on, she noticed a trend in how amateur travel photographs were being constructed, and by extension how leisure and reality were being conceived.


Jeremy Polacek