Multiple Exposures Gallery Presents Matt Leedham Recto / Verso: A Pandemic In Codex

By Editorial Team on August 15, 2022

Sun, 21 August 2022 - Sun, 02 October 2022

Courtesy of Multiple Exposures Gallery.

We have all lived an alternate reality through the COVID-19 pandemic. We were one person before it began, and we are a different person now. Recto / Verso is my story of who I was and who I became. How I felt and how I started feeling. My vision of the world, and my place within it, shifted deeply. Like two perspectives of the same story, I wrestled with many of the complex feelings we all experienced. Recto / Verso – front and back – a double-sided story.

Before the pandemic I was defined by the places I had been; my lifestyle consisted of an international adventure nearly once per month. When planes and plans were grounded, so too was my photography which depended upon exploring new cultures and landscapes. The silver lining of this change in lifestyle was time to think, and time to be creative in new ways. I turned my attention to making a book of my past images. This small crumb of a project led me down a rabbit hole I still find difficult to explain. My basement is now a bindery. I collect handmade papers from around the world. I spend my evenings in virtual workshops about limp bindings of the Vatican Library, or the finer points of adhesives in bookmaking, or studying the vellum used to make the illuminated Book of Kells.

Recto / Verso gave me a unique opportunity to express myself with two creative mediums – photography and bookbinding. One represents my creative journey before the pandemic, and one represents my creative journey during the pandemic. Combined, they express myself more completely than I could have with either of them separately.

I have come to respect and appreciate the complexity of human nature. If you did not experience these emotions over the last two years, I expect you’ll still understand my story. We all lived it – together / alone. Our collective experience was double-sided – Recto / Verso.

About the Artist
Matt Leedham tries to live an interesting life. When he was younger that meant doing things like running with the bulls, hiking the Inca trail to Machu Picchu, and tracking snow leopards in the Himalayas. But today, what Matt finds most interesting is spending time with family, watching his 4-year old niece discover new ideas, and making (or reading) books.

Matt was born and raised in northern New Jersey, went to the University of Maryland, and only picked up photography as a passion in 2016. He now lives in northern Virginia with his wife, Yu Jin.

Multiple Exposures Gallery is located at 105 N Union Street, Studio 312, Alexandria, VA.