Current

Arielle Bobb-Willis: New Featured Artist

02.05 - 23.06.24

Enquire

We are excited to announce a new collaboration with contemporary photographer, Arielle Bobb-Willis. Born and raised in New York City and Suffern (NY), Bobb-Willis has been using the camera for nearly a decade as a tool of empowerment. Bobb-Willis found solace behind the lens by developing a unique visual language that speaks to the complexities of life: the beautiful and the strange, a sense of belonging and isolation. By working a spectrum of bright hues into mundane, everyday environments, she describes her practice as therapeutic, akin to a visual mantra.

Bobb-Willis’ work has been published in Vogue, Vanity Fair and The New York Times, and she has collaborated with brands such as Nike, Apple, Valentino and Hermès. Her work has been presented internationally in museum exhibitions and she has photographed many contemporary musicians (including Billie Eilish, Lady Gaga, Lil Nas X). She is one of the few photographers to have shot a Vogue cover before the age of twenty-five.

Enquire

In almost every frame, Bobb-Willis presents us with flashes of red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple. Whether it’s a patterned two-piece, bold hair dye or a series of layered clothing, she uses colour to celebrate individuality and encourage self-expression. Much like the outfits on display, Bobb-Willis layers her vibrant subjects on top of the colours and shapes found in various cityscapes. A painted pavement or wall, a rooftop, a metal gate, are some of the simple scenes that provide a textured backdrop to her work. Through her lens, Bobb-Willis rearranges these blocks of primary and secondary colour to appear like an abstract mosaic or photographic patchwork. Working under the bright sun of various American cities, Bobb-Willis often slots a geometric slice of blue sky into the frame, or the shapely shadow that falls on the sidewalk below.

Arielle Bobb-Willis, 'New Orleans, 2023'
Enquire

A thread that runs through all her work is a focus on connection. With the exception of ‘New Orleans, 2023’, which presents a line of 25 people dressed uniformly in red on a grassy hill, Bobb-Willis usually works with just one or two people. When photographed alone, her subjects are caught in a series of lively and dynamic poses; curving, distorting, high-kicking. They appear to be exploring themselves, expressing through their bodies as if in dance. There is an energy to the photographs, which suggests that Bobb-Willis moves with her subjects. She plays with our perspective, shooting from a variety of angles that encourage further feelings of disorientation and abstraction. When there are two or more people in the frame, the subjects are always connected. They are close in proximity, if not fully intertwined, matching up like a jigsaw through their clothing, movement, or through colour. During life’s more transitional moments, Bobb-Willis encourages us to love, to be fluid, and to stay connected.

With her unique eye for colour, shape, and her happy-go-lucky disposition, Bobb-Willis toes the line between fashion photography and contemporary art. Yet her work draws on many of the masters from art history. She references Jacob Lawrence’s energy and vitality, the geometrical form and figurative style of Benny Andrews, Clementine Hunter’s vibrant narratives, and Max Ernst’s surrealist explorations of the unconscious mind, as specific influences on her approach to both composition and representation. The result is a distinctively hopeful and playful collection of images, reminding us that we view the world through whichever lens we choose.

Bobb-Willis’ work has featured in a number of prominent international exhibitions, including ‘As We Rise: Photography from The Black Atlantic’ (The Polygon Gallery, Vancouver B.C.) and the touring exhibition, ‘The New Black Vanguard: Photography Between Art and Fashion’ (Sarasota Art Museum, Florida; Museum of the African Diaspora, San Francisco; Fotografiska, Stockholm; The Detroit Institute of Arts, Michigan; Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio; Saatchi Gallery, London). ‘Keep the Kid Alive’, a new photobook of her work, will be published by Aperture later this year.

FeaturedArielle Bobb-Willis

Arielle Bobb-Willis Portrait
Arielle Bobb-Willis Portrait

The ArtistArielle Bobb-Willis’ unique aesthetic celebrates individuality. Her captivating work transcends conventional boundaries with a distinctive use of colour, dynamic compositions and profound emotional depth.

View Artist Page

Close

Join Our Mailing List

Stay up-to-date and in-the-know with all the latest from our community.

By continuing to use this site you consent with our cookie policy.

Close

Close

Close