Louis Umashev

Unhomely Home

Artist Statement

Influenced by artists Edward Hopper and Gregory Crewdson, I’ve aimed to capture a sense of isolation within a place through a bold display of the artistic technique of chiaroscuro. The overwhelming negative space conjures psychological emptiness, while chiaroscuro’s sharp, monochromatic contrast reflects the subject’s isolation. A physical sense of isolation is also conveyed through the juxtaposition of the ‘safe’ bedroom setting and the unhomeliness of the surroundings in the images on the wall. This familiar space within an unfamiliar setting influences the displacement, loneliness and isolation of the subject, while the objects in the bedroom space accentuates their youth.

Artwork Process

The bedroom items were sourced and transported to several locations across Brisbane, where they were set up at night. The model posed on the bed under the street light, to intentionally draw influence to Hopper's representation of figure and Crewdson's moody use of chiaroscuro. The raw photographs were then digitally manipulated to emphasise this technique.

About the Artist

  • Name: Louis Umashev
  • School: Brisbane Grammar School
  • Artwork: Unhomely Home
  • Media: Found objects, bedding, clothing, digital photographs

What I believe people can learn from making art is an appreciation for the extensive and exhausting process that takes place behind the scenes; the procedures and effort that have been undertaken to capture the perfect picture. My artwork involved carrying each part of the bedroom scene, including dissembling the bed, and Tetris-ing it into my tiny hatchback car. Carrying and reassembling this scene over five times in various parks, carparks, exhibitions and school classrooms was exhausting and at times discouraging; however, receiving the Creative Generation Excellence Award makes it all worthwhile.