Tag Archives: Elements

Valentina Canseco & Daniel Carvalho – Medellin al sol y al agua

Valentina Canseco is a French artist who draws. (What’s the word for that? drawer? illustrator? draughtswoman?). Anyway, she has a great show up currently in Medellin called Medellin al sol y al agua done in collaboration with Colombian urbanist Daniel Carvalho.  Canseco is showing a number of prints based on simple line-ink drawings of houses and simple street scenes in different neighborhoods around the city, covering all social classes and “stratuses” as they say here. She’s drawn to simple but idiosyncratic details of modern vernacular architecture and details of the cityscape. These are things that interest me greatly for my photography, so it’s really interesting to see how the artist evokes these elements with ink and pen.

Valentina Canseco at Centro Columbo Americano in Medellin

Valentina Canseco at Centro Columbo Americano in Medellin

Valentina Canseco at Centro Columbo Americano in Medellin

Valentina Canseco at Centro Columbo Americano in Medellin

The show is currently at the Centro Columbo Americano in downtown Medellin. They’ve also put together a great group on facebook, where they post news and invite users to submit photos of their neighborhoods. They’ve even got coffee mugs.

Larry Wiese

Larry Wiese has been engaged in photography for half a century, and his curiosity and desire to explore new ideas and technologies is a strong as ever. Besides being a photographer, he is an educator, and has almost two decades as a gallerist under his belt. He has exhibited widely and his work is held in many public collections. Larry recently sent me his new project, Terrain, Imagining Reality where he reimagined landscapes take on new realities.

Terrain – Imagining Reality : The real and the imagined. I best deal with reality by creating my own. There has long been a fascination with urban decay, the old, the unremarkable and the abandoned. I attempt to glimpse what resides beyond the horizon. The project, Terrain, is an ongoing narrative about my response when in these situations.

Most recently, Terrain began to evolve into “what should, could or would be……” Elements from here took on new meaning over there, and became more “real” than reality…..things imagined, but understood. For now, my “interior terrain” seems far more interesting than the real world…..

Photographer #423: Kahn & Selesnick

Nicholas Kahn and Richard Selesnick, both 1964, UK, are two photographers / installation artists based in the US who have been working together since 1988. They met at Washington University in St. Louis. In 1995 they started using photography as the way of telling their stories. Together they have created a large number of series that can best be described as “complex narrative photo-novellas.” The fantastical and extremely wide panoramic images are accompanied by texts. They conceive an alternate reality, use costumed actors, construct detailed three-dimensional miniatures and combine all these elements into their compelling and mythical photographs. Even the website takes the viewer on a journey through the world of Kahn and Selesnick. Their work has been released as books on numerous occasions and has been exhibited throughout the world extensively. The following images come from the series Mars: Adrift on the Hourglass Sea, Apollo Prophecies, City of Salt and Scotlandfuturebog.

Website: www.kahnselesnick.com

Photographer #413: Andrew B. Myers

Andrew B. Myers, 1987, is a young Canadian photographer based in Toronto. He has a very distinct photographic style. His work is aesthetic, using carefully placed objects on simple color backgrounds which creates a large area of negative space. Due to the use of negative space the images gain an awkward flatness. His photographs are well composed, graphic and stylish. The sunlit shadows, washed out colors as well as the objects used refer back to the 1970’s and 1980’s with a modern twist. Andrew’s photographs contain elements of nostalgia and pop culture. The following images come from the portfolio’s 2011 PT.1, 2010 PT.1 and 2009.


Website: www.andrewbmyers.com

Martin Weber – Echoes from the Interior

I first discovered Martin Weber’s project, Echoes from the Interior when it was shown in 2002 at a long-defunct gallery in Harlem called The Project. At the time I had just moved to New York and was discovering the pleasures of super-huge color C-prints common in contemporary photography [then and now]. Weber’s project really stuck with me because I had just recently spent a year and a half living in Argentina in 1999 and 2000 and to see large format, color works of subject matter I was familiar with and nostalgic for was a big deal for me at the time. Unfortunately I never bothered to write down Weber’s name and, although the photos stuck with me, for a number of years I had no idea who they were by. Eventually I came across one of the prints at an art show here in Buenos Aires and was able to track down Weber. At the time he didn’t have a website but he does now.

The series show scenes from various provinces of Argentina’s interior which have, in some way, to do with the history of the country and popular beliefs of the people. Many elements of the country’s recent political and economic history are touched upon in an eliptical way. Helpfully, the photos in the series come with an explanatory text, making each photo into sort of fable. The text that goes with the images here on my blog is too small to read, so I’d recommend going to Weber’s website and going through the whole series.

© Martin Weber

© Martin Weber

© Martin Weber

© Martin Weber

Photographer #332: Antony Crossfield

Antony Crossfield, 1972, UK, is a photographer who digitally manipulates his images. He tries to “question and undermine traditional conceptions of corporeality whilst exploring the relationship between the body and identity.” Much like a painter he combines his subjects with each other or other objects, presenting the body as unstable and constantly in flux. In his series Foreign Body he constructed the final photographs from various elements shot at different times and angles. He carefully puts every aspect of the images together, also thinking about the decor and the objects in the room as narrative symbols. The process of making an image can take up to several months. The following images come from the series Foreign Body, Missing Mass and War Dance.

Website: www.antonycrossfield.com

Photographer #332: Antony Crossfield

Antony Crossfield, 1972, UK, is a photographer who digitally manipulates his images. He tries to “question and undermine traditional conceptions of corporeality whilst exploring the relationship between the body and identity.” Much like a painter he combines his subjects with each other or other objects, presenting the body as unstable and constantly in flux. In his series Foreign Body he constructed the final photographs from various elements shot at different times and angles. He carefully puts every aspect of the images together, also thinking about the decor and the objects in the room as narrative symbols. The process of making an image can take up to several months. The following images come from the series Foreign Body, Missing Mass and War Dance.

Website: www.antonycrossfield.com

Review: Sunday by Paul Kooiker

PaulKooiker_Sunday.jpg

Paul Kooiker is on a mission. I don’t know what kind of mission it is, but if you look at the books he has produced you realize he’s on a mission alright. After Crush or Room Service, there now is Sunday, a book of nudes, or maybe more accurately photographs of a nude woman, balancing precariously on a wooden table in a rather unattractive backyard of sorts. (more)

I’m not the biggest fan of dragging out obligatory and thus tiresome references, but there is a big echo of Hans Bellmer and his photographs of self-assembled and rather strange looking dolls. Much has been written about Bellmer (here is an example if you really want to subject yourself to that). Maybe me not knowing enough causes me to be a bit weary of some of the explanations and/or theories. But many just seem to embellish what actually might just have been a somewhat unhealthy idea of sexuality, quite independent of the Surrealist background and of whether or not the Nazis approved of the work (of course, they didn’t).

That’s the problem with references, they don’t necessarily always teach you quite as much as you think. Which is why I’m going to throw in yet another, very different one: Irving Penn’s Nudes. Initially, I looked at Sunday back to front, and the Bellmer reference seemed to make a lot of sense. But looking in the actual direction, and looking at how the sequence mirrors the model’s movements, Bellmer seems like a red herring, to throw us off.

Well, whatever it is, the book of course needs to be seen against the background of photography over the past, let’s say 100 years, with elements of the photographic nude, images of the human body, imaging the human body (in photography almost inevitably men taking photographs of naked women), sexuality, voyeurism thrown into the mix. It’s not obvious where Sunday fits in there. If it was obvious, the book would merely be illustrating a concept (maybe it is, and I am now embellishing?). So I’m not entirely sure what to make of the book, which is good: I’ll have to come back to it.

Sunday, photographs by Paul Kooiker, 84 pages, Van Zoetendaal Gallery, 2011