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Questions of vision: Images by Neil Montier.


Images: Neil Montier.

As an artist and photographer working out of London, Neil Montier has produced a range of interesting work that comments on the ideals of early Modernism.

In his work 'In Arcania' and 'The Belt' , he explores both the promise of Modernism through its utopian visions and its dystopian realities, using the technique of relocating architectural monoliths to new environments. The results are both unsettling and yet compelling.

The first series, In Arcania, references Corbusian visions of urban planning, as well as the fantasy world of Hugh Ferriss, the inspiration behind Gotham City, subverting their now hopelessly naive utopian notions. The final collapse perhaps of the arrogant Modernist edifice?

If that was the last nail in the coffin of Modernism, then there is a kind of resurrection in The Belt series inspired by London's 1960 Brutalist architecture.

Buildings such as Erno Goldfinger's 'Balforn Tower', the Smithson's 'Robinhood Gardens' , and the Thamesmead Estate that was used as the backdrop for Stanley Kubrick A Clockwork, Orange, are all taken out of location and placed in a context that points back to their time of making. It is shocking to see, how nicely they scrub-up!

Would we be deceived a second time with their hollow promise?

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