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Cover for This Is Bliss

This Is Bliss

Jon Horvath, Hans Gremmen (Editor)


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A story of shattered expectations and faltered dreams, told through the photographs of a struggling roadside town called Bliss

This Is Bliss is a transmedia narrative project investigating the vanishing roadside geography and culture of a rural Idaho town named Bliss. The project considers how mythologies of place and happiness collide, and are frequently confounded, in a location with a complex narrative of booms and busts that reflects the complicated history of American Idealism and Manifest Destiny. All that remains in Bliss is two gas stations, a school, a church, a diner, and two saloons to service its 300 current residents. Through a thorough look at the contemporary landscape and its residents, This Is Bliss contrasts romantic visions of the American West with its contemporary reality and considers how the heights of idealism are envisioned on both a personal and cultural level.

"A study of dichotomies, This Is Bliss presents what once illuminated the western landscape with splendor boiled down to its essence, a husk of its former self. There, within a setting draped in bleakness and melancholy, Horvath uncovers the warmth of our humanity." - Ariel Shanberg, Essay

Yoffy Press, 9781949608281, 280pp.

Publication Date: June 21, 2022

About the Author

Jon Horvath is an interdisciplinary artist routinely employing systems-based strategies within transmedia narrative projects. He received his MFA in Photography from UW-Milwaukee in 2008, and a BAS in both English Literature and the History of Philosophy from Marquette University in 2001. Horvath's work has been exhibited internationally in solo and group shows at venues including: The Print Center (Philadelphia), The Griffin Museum of Photography (Wincester, MA), FIESP Cultural Centre (Sao Paolo, Brazil), Gyeonggi Art Center (Suwon, South Korea), OFF Piotrkowska (Lodz, Poland), Newspace Center for Photography (Portland), the Haggerty Museum of Art (Milwaukee), INOVA (Milwaukee), Colorado Photographic Arts Center, Manifest Gallery (Cincinnati), Johalla Projects (Chicago), and The Alice Wilds (Milwaukee). His work is currently held in the permanent collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Snite Museum of Art, and the Haggerty Museum of Art, and is included in the Midwest Photographers Project at the Museum of Contemporary Photography. Horvath currently teaches in the New Studio Practice program at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design.