© Nadine Rovner

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Nadine Rovner

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Artist Statement

Through orchestrated narratives and detailed staging, I create lush cinematic scenes that explore a visual world driven with heightened tension, anxiety, anticipation, longing and desire. There is something idyllic yet broken, thrilling yet vulnerable beneath the veneer of the characters that speaks to the current complexity of a society filled with palpable tension and fraught with resistance. The composed beauty of the characters is contrasted with their inner personal drama to reveal the polarized nature of humanity.

The stylistic choice of wardrobes, wigs and props are instantly transformative and guide me to construct fictional characters and narratives that play on the nostalgia of classic Americana. Through this tool of storytelling, the characters present an ambiguity that is not necessarily of a modern era and a familiarity to connect with the subject. The protagonists in the images have an outward appearance masked with hyperreal beauty that makes it easier for the viewer to have empathy for the characters and connect to their empowered emotions. The subjects are frozen in thought yet want to scream out. Their poised exterior of beauty conceals the transparent horror of emotions within. The compositions of groups of characters are often detached, not engaging with one another, portraying a displacement of human connection.

The locations the characters inhabit linger between fantasy and reality, another false facade of the subject’s beauty. The richly textured environments of motels and cars suggest hinted fragments of a narrative occurring just outside the frame and create a sense of unease on the surface. These spaces are common places of transitional states and contemplation where one can find all walks of life and cultures. Yet, they also possess a suspense and intrigue of where one can hide. The gloss of perfect beauty and the playful wittiness of the locations gives breathing room to the emotional context and psychology in the images.

Inspired to speak up and use my voice, these narratives are a visceral reaction to the emotions and anger that I have experienced as a female in our current political climate. I have struggled with the feelings of oppression, loss of control in the threats to roll back women’s rights and disgust in the depiction of woman as objectified one-dimensional figures. These characters speak to our current complexity of society inundated and overwhelmed with the uncertainty of a regressive agenda. The protagonists are at turning points in their intimate dramas pivotal to these defining moments. Like the opening moments of a film, when many things are possible, or the closing sequence where the plot may remain undetermined, it is up to the viewer to follow the plot line and finish the script.

© Nadine Rovner

Nadine Rovner's Portfolio

Laura’s Mercedes, 2017, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Lana, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Faye at MarLane Motel, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Holiday Motel, Afternoon, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Avenue Motel, No Vacancy, 2017, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Lana in the Window, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
El Ray Motel, Early Morning 1, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Holiday Motel, High Noon, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Sylvia, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
El Ray Motel_ Early Morning 2, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Holiday Motel, Morning, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Vera, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print
Faye at MarLane Motel 2, 2016, Archival Pigment Inkjet Print

© Nadine Rovner

Artist Biography

Nadine Rovner was raised in New Jersey and holds a BFA in Photography from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. She currently works as a fine art and commercial photographer in Philadelphia, PA. She constructs narratives of intimate worlds that bridge her commercial work with a fine art and cinematic quality. With complexity and detail, her richly textured environments and enigmatic characters explore a space filled with heightened tension, anxiety, anticipation, longing and desire. Rovner’s work has been exhibited nationally and has been featured in private collections, auctions, and arts fair such as APAID, SCOPE, Photo LA, Art San Diego and Zona Maco Mexico City. Her work has been exhibited in solo and group shows with Gallery 339 in Philadelphia, The Print Center in Philadelphia, James Oliver Gallery in Philadelphia, JDC Fine Art in San Diego, Silvereye Center for Photography, Hous Projects NYC, The University of the Arts, Randall Scott Gallery NYC, and the Humble Arts Foundation.



© Nadine Rovner

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