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Michele Asselin: Commons


Michele Asselin is an LA-based photographer who explores the stories of people of a place and time through the environments in which they work, live and play; her work examines how people and places come to reflect the systems of which they are a part.

In the artist’s own words of the space that she photographed for Commons, “These photographs depict the wallpaper in the banquet room of the former Hollywood Park Casino, now demolished. The floral design, which references late-nineteenth century ornamental motifs, seems to have been selected to signal Old European high taste and distinguished age. It must have originally imbued the room with glamour, and a sense of fantasy. When the wallpaper started peeling, the proprietors protected it from further damage with sheets of Plexiglas, clumsily drilled into the wallpaper. The Plexiglas unwittingly undoes the intention of the original, like an expensive couch covered in plastic. Through a clumsy attempt at preservation, the wallpaper becomes a metaphor for destruction—the effect of the original is destroyed by its protection.”

Other works by Michele Asselin currently on view: Forward Motion at Union Station through mid-Fall and Clubhouse Turn part of Photoville LA at Annenberg Space for Photography, May 3, 4, 5.