The X-Ray Vision of Nick Veasey


We live in a world obsessed with image. What we look like, what our clothes looklike, houses, cars… I like to counter this obsession with superficial appearance byusing X-raysto strip back the layers and show what it is like under the surface. Oftenthe integral beauty adds intrigue to the familiar. We all make assumptions based onthe external visual aspects of whatsurrounds us and we are attracted to people andforms that are aesthetically pleasing. I like to challenge this automatic way that wereact to just physical appearance by highlighting the, often surprising, inner beauty.

This society of ours, consumed as it by image, is also becoming increasingly controlled by security and surveillance. Take a flight, or go into a high profilecourtroom and your belongings will be X-rayed. The post arriving in corporationsand government departments has often been X-rayed. Security cameras track ourevery move. Mobile phone receptions place us at any given time. Information is keyto the fight against whatever we are meant to be fighting against. To create art withequipment and technology designed to help big brother delve deeper, to use someof that fancy complicated gadgetry that helps remove the freedom and individuality in our lives, to use that apparatusto create beauty brings a smile to my face.

To mix my metaphors, we all know we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, thatbeauty is more than skin deep. By revealing the inside, the quintessential element ofmy artspeculates upon what the manufactured and natural world really consists of.

The 47-year-old Englishman estimates that over the past decade or so he’s x-rayed more than 4,000 objects. “I’m interested in how things work, and x-rays show what’s happening under the surface,” he says. “Plus, they look cool.” To get his pictures, Veasey uses industrial x-ray machines typically employed in art restoration (to examine oil paintings), electronics manufacturing (to inspect circuit boards), and the military (to check tanks for stress fractures).

Please visit NICKVEASEY.COM for additional information and photographs. Nick has several books of his work for sale on his site

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