Natalie Christensen is an American photographer based in New Mexico, USA.
The photos of Natalie are characterized by the exploration of the more banal suburban landscapes that may not be noticed by the casual observer and to draw attention to the drama that is missed.
"I began studying the color fields, geometric shapes, and juxtapositions created by the light and shadow.
I am using symbols and shapes, line and shadow, to present psychological metaphors in the landscape. Closed and open doors, shadows, and swimming pools draw me to a scene as they invite conjecture.
My images emphasize what is happening within the frame and invite the viewer to contemplate what is happening outside the edges but can't be seen."
Her work is defined by a sense of mystery and the unknown.
Natalie has shown her work in exhibitions around the world, including London, Berlin, New York, and Los Angeles. She was one of five invited photographers for “The National 2018: Best of Contemporary Photography” at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art and was recently named one of “Ten Photographers to Watch” at the Los Angeles Center for Digital Art.
Her photographs are in the permanent collections of museums and institutions as well as numerous private collections. Natalie is represented by Turner Carroll Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Susan Spiritus Gallery in Newport Beach, California, and Galerie Minimal in Berlin, Germany.
Southwest by Middle East
I thought the email sent to me was spam. An invitation to be a guest of the Embassy of the United Arab Emirates in Washington, D.C. on a tour of the UAE along with a group of architects, architectural photographers, and curators!
Now, my art almost always incorporates architecture; however, my photographs are never about a particular building.
I do not consider myself an architectural photographer. I know almost nothing about the field of architecture.
I have always been more interested in the quiet spaces in between the important landmarks.
And what I knew of the UAE, Dubai, in particular, was glitz, glam, and extremely tall buildings - the kind of subject matter
I never shoot. As it turned out, the email was real. I accepted, part of an architectural delegation participating in a one-week cultural tour.
The goal: an introduction to the UAE’s vibrant arts and culture scene and cultivation of stronger connections between U.S. and Emirati professionals working in the architectural and cultural sectors.
Members of the delegation traveled to Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, and Al Ain. The delegates met with leaders from the UAE’s top cultural institutions and foundations, such as the Louvre Abu Dhabi and Etihad Museum, and we visited architectural and heritage sites, such as Burj Khalifa, Masdar City, and Qasr Al Hosn.
It was not what I expected. I found the quiet spaces in between the high rises and luxury shopping malls. I pointed my camera toward the car parks, 1980’s apartment buildings, abandoned sports facilities, and random street elements.
I discovered parallels between my home in the high desert of New Mexico and the desert of the Middle East.
Both places are ripe with architectural archetypes – New Mexico with its adobe structures and the UAE with its
fantastical, over-the-top architectural marvels.
I am interested in telling an alternative story of New Mexico with my photographs, and I did the same thing in the UAE.
I will always be curious about the ordinary scenes and spaces no matter where I might be. There is still an essence of the magic of the United Arab Emirates in these lesser-known locations, moments of amusing order, and perhaps unquestionable tension. I seek to proclaim the quiet grace of these “spaces in between” to the viewer and myself.
Natalie Christensen -
Masdar city dark pool, 2019
You can find more works by Natalie Christensen here