Stephanie Swart
Photography & Media

My work revolves around the fire hydrant— a solitary, mundane object. Its invisibility offers an opportunity to explore its potential as a muse in my artistic practice. I take advantage of the reproducible and malleable nature of images, which allows me to take a familiar subject and, through various processes, produce a strange end result.

The Hydrant series displays the printed hydrant paired with an authentic object— a “not in service” polypropylene hydrant bag. The positioning of the bag within a frame censors the physical print of a hydrant. In addition to the collection of framed authentic bags, hand cut prints of hydrant bags juxtapose a multi-colored hydrant grid. This everyday object suddenly becomes more visible when it is hidden behind a bag and presented in a pop art aesthetic. Witnessing the familiar exist in unconventional ways opens up the possibilities of how we understand our surroundings.

The glamorizing process of printing an image, framing it, and mounting it onto a wall for viewing signifies an importance and worthiness of consumption. The display of my photographic prints turns the mundane into the surreal and encourages new ways to view the everyday.