Born in Brussels in 1976, Manchester-based Mishka Henner’s work explores and subverts the value of photography in today’s media-saturated world. His images derive from a multitude of sources – the Internet, satellite imagery and television, as well as the precious canon of photography, calling to question the idea of authorship and challenging traditional associations of photography through a singular viewpoint.
Henner’s exhibition in the main galleries at Open Eye presents new work exhibited for the first time – Levelland Oil Field andFeedlots (2012-2013). For these works Henner has captured meticulously detailed aerial photographs of immense cattle feedlot farms and oil and gas fields in the US, seamlessly compositing multiple images together to create ultra-high definition images which are printed large format.
The exhibition also presents Henner’s controversial new work Less Américains (2012) in which Henner erases Robert Frank’s highly influential 1958 book Les Américains (considered by many to be the ‘bible’ of American photography). Less Américains is shown alongside a number of other works which investigate the photo book as a form, such as Photography Is (2010-2013) which collects thousands of found phrases beginning with the words “Photography is” from a wealth of sources including books, technical manuals, blogs, newspapers and scientific journals.