This December, London-based creative studio, Emulsion, presents SUB-MERGE: a photographic exploration into the relationship of mental health, art and technology. Drawing on themes of artifice, nature, and perceptions of reality, artists including Ed Atkins, Harley Weir & Cédric Kouamé have contributed prints that will feature in an online print sale to raise awareness of mental health, with all profits donated to the charity, Mind.
Curated by Emulsion’s Photo and Film Editor, Nick Hadfield, and Creative Director, Mikey Opie O’Grady, SUB-MERGE is a response to the effect of recent world events on mental wellbeing today. The project was born
out of a series of conversations with Emulsion artists around technology and the mind.
“2020 has put considerable strains, changes and impacts on our mental state. SUB-MERGE is a reaction to one of our generations biggest challenges – our relationship with technology. Using photography in its broadest sense, we wanted to encourage innovative and creative uses of new technologies, alongside our “natural” states of being, to promote healthy living and to expand consciousness.” says Nick Hadfield on the initiative.
While new technologies have often been framed as overtly harmful forces, SUB-MERGE celebrates the power of image-making today, reimagining the transformative potential to bridge altered states of consciousness. Historically used to capture an objective, singular ‘reality’ – photography now becomes a forum for a fluid, sensual and technological experience.