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Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos Announced as First-Ever Artist in Residence Duo at The Fairmont Dallas

Liverpool Station by Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos

Liverpool Station by Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos

Collaborative Photographers to Focus on Urban Landscape of Asian Countries

The Fairmont Dallas announces the first-ever Artist in Residence duo with Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos. The pair will occupy the “O” level studio space for three months while working on a project that will focus on material from a three-week trek across Asia from which they returned just days before beginning their tenure. Semos and Garcia Urrutia will continue work on their “Wooden Postcards” series, which finds photos taken with Semos’ Holga camera, transposed onto pieces of reclaimed materials – such as hardwood floors or old car windshields using a creative process original to Garcia Urrutia.

“The postcards unify image and form in a celebration of Western world capitals,” said Semos. “They are visual interpretations of urban landscape, replete with the nostalgia, decay and charm of bustling metropolitan centers like New York City, London, Mexico City.” The pair’s focus throughout their residency on material from their recent trip will be the first addition to the collection from the Eastern hemisphere.

Empire Mountain by Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos

Empire Mountain by Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos

While Semos and Garica Urrutia have been working together on joint projects since 2005, their individual backgrounds are riddled with accolades, awards, grants and plenty of exhibits and solo shows. A proud Greek-American, Semos left her hometown of Dallas to attend the University of Texas at Austin where she earned a dual bachelor’s degree in photojournalism and photo illustration. She briefly returned to Dallas after college before moving to New York City, where she began using a Holga camera, becoming enamored by the often surreal images and poignant colors produced by the plastic lens of the toy camera. Her work has been featured in New York Magazine, Business Traveler, Timeout NY, The Dallas Morning News and Daily Candy.

Before meeting Semos during an art-instillation partnership for the Rosemont Primary School in Dallas, Garica Urrutia studied architecture and design specialty at Texas Tech University. He uses his academic background to create keen architectural focus points in his work and often pays homage to his Mexican heritage. Garcia Urrutia has received recognition in numerous shows, including an honorable mention at the National Urban Poetry I Competition. In 2004, Garcia Urrutia opened DECORAZON art gallery in Dallas and brought on Semos in 2005 as co-owner and operator. Their work together has been featured at the prestigious Art Basel show in Miami, Fla.; Red Dot Art Fair in London and the Affordable Art Fair in New York City, where the pair call home, operating a second DECORAZON gallery.

The duo’s work with reclaimed materials continues the momentum behind the hotel’s support of sustainable art, which was initiated with the appointment of Artist in Residence predecessor Sean Springer, who works with salvaged wood to create purposeful, functional furniture and sculptures.

Semos and Garcia Urrutia will be in residence from April 1, 2011 through June 30, 2011. The duo’s regular studio hours will be Tuesday through Friday 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

For appointments outside of those hours, please contact Erica Martinez at 214-269-4404 or emartinez@jacksonspalding.com.

For more information on DECORAZON visit www.decorazongallery.com.

MK Semos + Hugo Garcia Urrutia Artist’s Statement

Working primarily in recycled substrates and materials, Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos do what they do best, unifying image and form along with celebrating Western world capitals, in their current body of work, “Wooden Postcards.”

The photography work created by Semos and Garcia Urrutia in this collaborative exhibition is an ongoing body of work and visual interpretation of an urban landscape, full of nostalgia, decay and charm, from New York City, London, Mexico City, and other cities around the globe, as places of inner experience as well as urban sprawl. Like a web slowly forming, these special hubs of the world act as melting pots, cradling vast amounts of cultures and ideas; live organisms that become cultural icons themselves.

The imagery is initially created by Semos, who utilizes a manual, very basic Holga film camera, allowing her to create and manufacture intuitive collages of composition inside the camera by overlapping frames and double exposing the film. Later, after processing the film, “story boards” are chosen from her lengthy narrative of images, signs, pop-color, and surprise code. Her cross-processing technique gives colors maximum saturation.

What Semos’ imagery seems to lack in people, is actually all about people. It describes how congregations move, whispers of what they create, and implies the energetic footprint they’ve left behind.

The work is taken to another level with the expert effort of Garcia Urrutia, as he experiments with different un-orthodox substrates and photographic finishes. The imagery is integrated with reclaimed hardwood floors in this case, allowing the viewer to experience the grains and truest colors of the wood; the quality and grains of the wood becoming part of the image composition. The recycled hardwood floor is also evocative of the high volume imagery that the viewer can see in the artwork itself, reminding one of the concentrated effort of foot-traffic associated with the worn footprint that we all leave behind.

About the Artist-In-Residence Program

The Fairmont Dallas’ Artist-in-Residence program features breakthrough local and regional artists who reside in the hotel for three months at a time while working in an onsite studio located on the “O” level in the hotel’s south tower. Artwork created throughout the length of the artist’s stay serves various purposes – some is displayed in public areas of the hotel, others illuminate the hotel’s themed Art Suite and a number of select pieces benefit various philanthropic efforts.

About The Fairmont Dallas

Located at 1717 N. Akard, The Fairmont Dallas is situated in the heart of the Downtown Dallas Arts District, just steps from fine dining, shopping, arts and entertainment. The hotel’s 545 elegant guest rooms and luxury suites combine hospitality, comfort and that special Texas flair for an unrivaled experience.  Fairmont Gold, an exclusive lifestyle experience, is designed to fulfill the needs of the discerning business executive and leisure traveler, with many of the comforts of home and more. The Fairmont Dallas hotel can accommodate your lodging needs for business or leisure, grand events, weddings, conferences, or intimate meetings. Become a fan of Fairmont. Join our online communities at www.everyonesanoriginal.com, www.twitter.com/FairmontDallas, and www.facebook.com/TheFairmontDallas.

Liverpool Station by Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos

Liverpool Station by Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos

Empire Mountain by Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos

Empire Mountain by Hugo Garcia Urrutia and MK Semos

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