Below Sea Level, new photographs and assemblages

Dec 9 – Feb 25

A Gallery For Fine Photography; 241 Chartres, New Orleans, LA 504-568-1313

A collection of staged, magical realist photographs in which Varisco imagines Louisiana as a modern-day Atlantis with residents adapting to life underwater, “Below Sea Level”, is an artistic investigation of place, subject, and the emotionally rich narrative of befriending our predicted fate.

Spellbound by the uncanny truth that the water surrounding us mutually sustains and destroys, Varisco’s current project, “Below Sea Level”, aims to unpack the intimate, subterranean experiences of life as an endangered community. How do we survive in this nature, how do we stay grounded on a land that’s vanishing? “Below Sea Level” imagines a poetic, metaphorical response to these urgent questions – we create a new world below the surface of the water.

Unconventionally shot while submerged underwater, “Below Sea Level” also functions as a performative collaboration. Varisco gets in the water with a diverse group of residents, gently coaching them away from playful swimming toward a somber state of acceptance, guiding them to be versus perform. Being underwater imbues the images with a poetic beauty Varisco identifies as a particularly spiritual relationship with impermanence. It is Varisco’s hope that “Below Sea Level” will inspire important dialogue about our fragile environment and our symbiotic relationship to it.

View the exhibition inventory here

“Below Sea Level” is supported in part by the Rauschenberg Foundation, Tulane University/Newcomb Fine Art Department and is exhibited in conjunction with Prospect.4 and PhotoNOLA.