© Ilona Szwarc

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Ilona Szwarc

Los Angeles

Artist Statement

Unsex me here, a new body of work by Polish-American artist Ilona Szwarc, takes place in a dreamlike borderland somewhere between mid-century Palm Springs and the forests of European fairy tales. Szwarc, who was born in Warsaw and spent her adolescence in a small town in Texas, plies the ambiguity of her own memories to explore shifts in time and body. Her photographs gesture towards a repressed wildness — a flash of teeth disturbs the too-quiet powder room; a soft mass of white hair glows amidst ornamental glass. In Szwarc’s work, the changes are both real and surreal; the memories true and false; the danger at once as removed as an old wives tale and as close as a stranger in the mirror.

© Ilona Szwarc

Ilona Szwarc's Portfolio

© Ilona Szwarc

Artist Biography

Ilona Szwarc (b. 1984, Warsaw, lives and works in Los Angeles, CA) received an MFA in Photography from Yale University and a BFA from the School of Visual Arts. Szwarc’s recent solo exhibitions include Make Room (2019), AALA Gallery, Los Angeles (2018); Instytut Fotografii Fort (2017) and Leica Gallery, Warsaw (2016); Amerikahaus, Munich (2015); Foley Gallery, New York (2013); and Galerie Claude Samuel, Paris (2012). She has participated in group exhibitions at the Benaki Museum, Athens; Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb; Fotografiska Museum, Stockholm; Shulamit Nazarian Gallery and Regen Projects, Los Angeles; Danziger Gallery and International Center for Photography, New York; among others. Among her awards and grants she has received the Richard Benson Prize for Excellence in Photography (2015), the Arnold Newman Prize for New Directions in Photographic Portraiture (2014), and the World Press Photo (2013). Her photographs have been featured in numerous publications worldwide.



© Ilona Szwarc

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