Opening Reception Dec 06, 5:30pm - 7pm
After exhibiting in Toronto at CONTACT 2012 and in Germany at NordArt 2012, Melissa Mercier brings her series entitled "Irrational Fear Of Confined Spaces" home for her first Vancouver solo exhibition at the Firehall Arts Centre this winter.
In the series "Irrational Fear Of Confined Spaces" Melissa carefully chooses her subject at a crowded lakefront. Where Gursky (Swimming Pool, Ratingen, 1987) or fellow Vancouverite Scott McFarland (On the Terrace Garden, Joe and Rosalee Segal with Cosmos altrosanguineus, 2004) might choose to focus on the sociological, Mercier removes the human element completely to offer a remedy to anyone suffering from feelings of claustrophobia. A self proclaimed claustrophobe and obsessive compulsive, Melissa is not the least bit embarrassed about these traits, in fact she celebrates them through her work. "This series was photographed at a resort commonly overrun with tourists - a nightmare for someone who fears tight spaces." states Mercier. "I decided to contrast the crowdedness by allowing as much breathing room as possible in the works." Some of these images appear to be taken underwater but they are all from above, allowing the submerged and protruding elements of the natural setting play with the lake's surface much like our own fears poking through or drowning within our public personalities.
Melissa Mercier is a fine art photographer based in Vancouver, Canada. After a move from her native Quebec to Toronto, Melissa then studied photography at Vancouver's Langara College and worked under photographer Anthony Redpath.