Casey McKee (US)

Casey McKee (US)
Text written by GHA

American artist Casey McKee lives and works in Germany, creating interesting mixed-media pieces. By taking photographs and painting on them, McKee seamlessly combines the real with the surreal while managing to blur the lines between the two mediums.

There is an intense attention to detail within McKee’s artwork, combining aspects of intricate and smooth brush strokes that appear photographic, and uncanny photographic elements that appear painted, all within the same piece.

This allows him to present extremely realistic absurdities in his artworks, putting people into unusual and even fantastical situations while maintaining aspects of normality. He often leaves the photographed faces untouched, speaking and connecting directly with the audience. 

Casey McKee (US)

McKee’s photographs are staged, which emphasises a disconnect between the background, the objects in the painting, and the figures themselves, as well as maintaining a distinct separation from the audience. His figures are posing— they know they are being viewed, and instead of inviting the viewer in, they almost ask us to question their awkward roles, wondering why each individual component was thoughtfully placed.

McKee touches on many different ideas and concepts within his artwork, but his pieces primarily seem to function as a critique of modern culture, emphasising themes of consumerism, capitalism, and objectification. His blurred borders between paint and photograph, along with his emphasised incongruousness, may provoke the viewer to question power structures and reflect upon the facts of their own material existence.

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