See 13 Stunning, Delightfully Creative Still Lifes That Photographers Stuck at Home Are Making With Their Random Stuff

The hashtag #quarantinestilllife is gaining popularity.

Jeff Yeh, Apple and Facemask (2020). Courtesy of the artist.

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Or use those lemons, and all the other random stuff you have lying around your house, to make still life photographs.

That’s been the motto for many a photographer in this, the age of social distancing. Out of their studios and off the streets, young photogs have trained their lenses on clever, ad-hoc scenes in their own homes, breathing a little life into their lazarettos—and into a genre that often gets overlooked.  

The result is a variety of inventive, delightful images, lit in the way only skilled photographers can, united by the increasingly popular hashtag #quarantinestilllife on Instagram. Toilet paper becomes origami; household objects ranging from a papaya to a perfume bottle are juxtaposed to look like a glossy ad. These snapshots are genuinely comforting in the way they make domestic scenes into something beautiful, strange, or funny at a time when we may be struggling to see our homes as anything other than confining spaces.

“Shooting at home, as opposed to in the studio or out in the world, is refreshing because you’re forced to deal with your actual belongings and your actual self,” says David Brandon Geeting, a photographer who straddles the lines of art, editorial, and fashion. “You suddenly see the potential in things you have overlooked or taken for granted over the years.”

Geeting had just opened a show of new pictures at Janet Borden Inc. in New York when the city’s lockdown began. Ironically, that body of work was about scenes the artist came across while walking around his neighborhood—something he is doing quite a lot of right now (while maintaining proper social distance). 

Here are some of our favorite examples of #quarantinestilllifes on Instagram.

Follow Artnet News on Facebook:

Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.
Article topics