FloodZone: Photographs by Anastasia Samoylova
December 24, 2021 — May 29, 2022
Frank Photography Gallery
FloodZone is Miami-based artist Anastasia Samoylova’s photographic account of the effects of sea-level rise and climate change along South Florida’s receding shoreline. Her images consciously develop a visual inventory of life in a sinking ecosystem, exposing the signs of unease and trepidation that pepper the flooding landscape. With her lens focused on the small but telling symptoms of destruction and decay, Samoylova blurs the lines between paradise and catastrophe in her probing analysis of a climate in crisis.
Born in the Soviet Union in the early 1980s, Samoylova watched the collapse of communism firsthand and was particularly attuned to the disharmony between the regime’s utopian imagery and the difficulties they thinly masked. When she moved to Miami Beach in 2016, she discovered unexpected parallels between that dreamlike imagery and the idealized representations that saturate the city — visions of a seaside paradise that betray its ominous reality. Samoylova’s poignant photographs of coastal wildlife, flooded construction sites, rusted infrastructure, and architectural rubble integrate the tropical palette and alluring imagery of Miami’s visual culture while revealing the cracks in its façade.
“For those of us who live in Hampton Roads, Virginia, images of hurricane blasted shores and waterlogged cars may have little impact. We see and feel the effects of sea-level rise on a daily basis and have to some extent become dulled to images of the calamity. Artist Anastasia Samoylova’s photographs offer something different. With an eye for subtlety and a conscientious attention to the everyday, Samoylova abandons the shock of climate disaster photography for a searching investigation into the cognitive dissonance of climate change: how people continue to live, often anxiously, amid rising waters.” – Seth Feman, Ph.D., the Chrysler Museum’s Deputy Director for Art & Interpretation and Curator of Photography
This exhibition is organized by the Chrysler Museum of Art.