New models is a series of large-scale portraits of youth. The pictures depict knowing, intimate encounters between two people charged with yearning and desire. Clouded by melancholia, angst, and anachronism and contoured by melodrama and affect.
Our vague understanding of the circumstances portrayed—a breakup, a mending of a relationship, unrequited love—heightens the photographs’ ambiguity. Have the emotions peaked, or is the drama still swelling? The figures are dressed in vintage clothing, posed in non-descript settings, and are difficult to place in a specific era, as if they have stepped outside of time. Barreto emphasises photography’s lack of a before and after to create a sense of a perpetual now, a sustained note, an everlasting feeling.
The portraits show young people longing for their youth, for its beauty, its idealism, and its messy, intense, and contradictory feelings.
Mauro Antonio Barreto
Mauro Antonio Barreto is a Nashville-based artist with qualifications in art and photography and is currently an adjunct professor at Lipscomb University and Middle Tennessee State University.
He has presented his work in several solo exhibitions in the US, including at the University of North Carolina and the San Angelo Museum of Fine Art.
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