Unreliable Memories

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Editorial RM, 2022. First edition.
Softcover, 112 pp., color illustrated, 230 x 310 mm. Photographs by Nick Meek. Text by Borja Bagunya (English). Design by Grégoire Pujade-Lauraine.

For British photographer Nick Meek, growing up in the North of England and raised on Hollywood movies and TV shows, the American West always seemed a terrain full of golden prospect and possibility. In this luscious photographic portrait, the country’s highways, motels, national parks, movie theaters, road signs, airports, waterfalls and beaches appear at once romantic and eerie, optimistic and ironic, hazy and hyperreal, soaked in emotion and overtly artificial

Here, in washed-out, almost painterly Kodachrome oranges, yellows and pale blues, Meek constructs a Hollywood-style nostalgia, subtly exaggerating the photographic style and iconography that typically accompany such portrayals of the West, while nonetheless ingeniously accessing their emotional pull.

The process of remembering entails a certain amount of forgetting. In these photos, Meek mines this gap, creating space for scenes and meanings that might never have really been there. This is Meek’s debut monograph, compiling a selection from his acclaimed series, created between 2002 and 2017.

Nick Meek (born 1969) has worked for the New York Times, the New YorkerGQEsquire and others. His photographs were recently on view at Momentum Fine Art in Miami and the DeSoto Gallery in Los Angeles. Meek was born in England and divides his time between London and Chamonix, France.

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