Probing and provocative, the elaborately staged photographs of Natalia Edenmont explore fundamental themes such as birth, death, womanhood, sex, beauty, and decay. Juxtaposing opposing subjects and aesthetics, Edenmont’s work is underpinned by a tension between painting and photography, abstraction and figuration, attraction and repulsion. In dramatic compositions that display almost baroque love of excess, she has addressed taboo subjects such as menstruation and miscarriage, pointing up the double standards and repression of individuality in western society. Edenmont has said: “I paint with a photographic lens”. Her abstract butterfly works, employing thousands of butterfly wings painstakingly collaged onto a surface, evoke the joyful colours of Kandinsky and the gestural freedom of the German Expressionists. Besides butterflies, Edenmont has used natural materials such as beetles, flowers and vegetables, presenting them in masse as lavish sculptural costumes for her models in a fusion of portraiture and still life genres. In these works the artist draws on childhood memories, her own experiences, art historical iconography and popular culture to create arresting, sumptuous images in which the theme of Vanitas is inherent.
Born in Yalta, Crimea, 1970, Edenmont trained at State Art School of Kiev, Soviet Union, Simferopol State Art School, Crimea, and Forsberg’s International School of Design, Stockholm, Sweden. Her work has been exhibited throughout Europe and the United States and can be found in private and public collections globally including the Modern Museum Stockholm, Miami Art Museum and Moscow House of Photography Museum among others. In February 2014, Swedish public television broadcast a one hour documentary about Edenmont and her work. Edenmont has lived in Sweden since 1991.