The Graphic Sensibility Of Mary Chen’s Photography


The graphic sensibility of Toronto-based artist Mary Chen is evident in the color and form of her unique photographic compositions.

Hailing originally from Henan in China, Chen has recently completed her Bachelors with Honors at OCAD University—but she didn’t major in photography. Drawing from an education in advertising and design, Chen’s photographic work has a notable aesthetic that is contemporary but not derivative. In an interview with Wül Magazine, she described technology as a double-edged-sword—it offers inspiration and infinite temptation to ‘copy and paste’. Paraphrasing Sean Brown, on this topic she commented: “As a creative, we should not be recreating what others have already done, claim[ing] it as our own; instead we should look at their creative process, then draw from that to create something we can claim to be our own.” Characterized by clean lines and bold color contrasts, Chen’s work is undoubtedly of the time, but her ability to play with color, light and structure proves that she is also intent on carving out a space that is uniquely her own.


All images © Mary Chen