Oli Kellett: Cross Road Blues

Cross Road Blues presents a curated collection of 33 photographs from British artist Oli Kellett’s famous series of the same name. Launched in 2016 during a stay in Los Angeles, the project coincided with a crucial moment in American politics, literally symbolizing a crossroads for the nation. Subsequently, the series expanded organically, gaining broader meaning as Kellett extended his exploration to other countries such as Spain, Japan, Brazil, and Mexico.
The underlying theme of Kellett’s images lies in the representation of environments located at crossroads, a symbolic space that represents the pervasive tension encountered in life. Against the backdrop of an era marked by fake news, political polarization, and algorithmic echo chambers, Kellett highlights the fractured nature of our worldly experiences as we navigate multiple identities both online and offline. However, intersections, as Kellett notes, are egalitarian spaces where everyone must wait.
Kellett’s skillful use of natural light and subtle composition lends a cinematic quality to these heartfelt scenes. The juxtaposition of the impersonal urban environment with the individuality of human experience highlights the artist’s deep interest in the human psyche. In the words of writer and philosopher Nigel Warburton, whose introductory essay enriches the book, “The step each person is about to take seems much more important than simply crossing a street.”
Inspired by the legacy of the esteemed American painter Edward Hopper, known for capturing quiet spaces and melancholy reflective moments of American life, Kellett skillfully creates captivating photographs that depict everyday individuals contemplating at crossroads. The result is a compelling contemporary metaphor.
Published to coincide with a solo exhibition at HackelBury Fine Art in London, Oli Kellett’s debut monograph, Cross Road Blues, is a finely produced work. Printed on natural art paper and bound in gray cloth on board, with a sizable flip-over cover plate, this initial print run is limited to 1,000 bound copies.

A portrait of Oli Kellett

About the Author

Oli Kellett (b. 1983) is a British artist based in Hastings, UK. In 2018 he was awarded the Royal Academy Rose Award for Photography and the Royal Academy Arts Club Award (awarded to an artist aged 35 or under for a work in any medium). In 2021 he was shortlisted for the Photo London Emerging Photographer award.
He has had two solo shows at Hackelbury Fine Art in London and shown at Paris Photo, Photo London and AIPAD New York.
He is represented by HACKELBURY FINE ART.

Hardcover: 68 pages
Publisher: Nazraeli Press; First Edition (January 15, 2024)
Language: English
Size: 18 x 14 x 2 inches
Weight: 3 pounds
ISBN-10: 1590055918
ISBN-13: 978-1590055915

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