“To me, the desert has a transformative nature where one may enter as a nobody and come out as a somebody.” – Mona Kuhn
Mona Kuhn is best known for her large-scale photographs of the human form. Her approach is unusual in that she develops close relationships with her subjects, resulting in images of remarkable intimacy. In addition, Kuhn’s playful combination of visual strategies, such as translucency explores our connectedness with the environment. A sublime sense of comfort and intelligence permeates her works, showing the human body in its most natural state while simultaneously re-envisioning the nude as a contemporary canon of art.
Kuhn was born in São Paulo, Brazil, in 1969, and is of German descent. In 1989, Kuhn moved to the United States and earned her BA from The Ohio State University, before furthering her studies at the San Francisco Art Institute. She is currently an independent scholar at The Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles. Mona Kuhn’s first monograph, Photographs, was debuted by Steidl in 2004; followed by Evidence, 2007; Native, 2010; Bordeaux Series, 2011; Private, 2014; and She Disappeared into Complete Silence, 2018/19. In addition, Kuhn’s latest monograph titled Bushes and Succulents has been published by Stanley Barker Editions, with a debut at Jeu de Paume in Paris, France. Occasionally, Mona teaches at The University of California, LA, and the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena.
Mona Kuhn’s work is in private and public collections worldwide, including The J. Paul Getty Museum, LA; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; The Hammer Museum, LA; Perez Art Museum Miami; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; and the Kiyosato Museum in Japan. Kuhn’s work has been exhibited at The Louvre Museum and Le Bal in Paris; The Whitechapel Gallery and Royal Academy of Arts in London; Musée de l’Elysée in Switzerland; Leopold Museum in Vienna, and Australian Centre for Photography, Sydney. Mona Kuhn lives and works in Los Angeles.