New Mexico based photographer Natalie Christensen’s striking, minimalist photography is an attempt to reduce her external environment to its most fundamental elements. In her ongoing series New Mexico, Deconstructed, the photographer steers away from the romanticised postcard-perfect image of Santa Fe and its adobe architecture framed by blue skies. Instead, she turns her lens to areas of town that many believe to be an eyesore. The act of digging deeper to see and expose the unseen is reminiscent of her past work as a psychotherapist.
Stripping away the superfluous, the artist uses light, color and shadow to delve deeper into otherwise “banal” scenes in her hometown. The artist finds beauty in those big box stores, anonymous strip malls and sprawling apartment complexes. Drawn to the work of abstract expressionist painters whose work she became acquainted with at college, she aspires to express these same ideas through photography.
Having worked for more than 25 years as a psychotherapist, with time she came to realise that through her photography work she continues in the same thread as her career path: “My choice to focus on the ‘unseen’ in my environment and highlight it is similar to the process of psychotherapy”, she writes, “in doing therapy, previously unknown parts of the self are slowly revealed… While the process can be uncomfortable it can result in something very beautiful – a deeper knowledge of the self”.
At present, Natalie has close to 23k followers on Instagram, and this figure is rising. “Instagram is totally to blame for my passion for photography”, she writes, “I was not making pictures until 2015 and my first ones were posted to my IG account. Instagram has influenced my aesthetic very much…I love the IG community and the support and encouragement that happens there”.
All images © Natalie Christensen