Tag Archives: Photographic Studies

The Bechers on Display at Paris Photo

The work of the photographic duo Bernd and Hilla Becher is indisputably some of the most important in modern photography. This week, a two-part exhibit at Paris Photo highlights the historical significance of the Bechers, most well known for their “typologies”—uniform, photographic studies of industrial structures such as water towers and blast furnaces.

The first part of the show, Bernd and Hilla Becher—Printed materials 1964-2012, features an extensive collection of rare ephemera related to the Bechers’ work. These objects, including posters, invitations and museum catalogues, were amassed by curator and book dealer Antoine de Beaupré for more than ten years.

“You get an historical overview,” said Beaupré. “and also an evolution of how their work developed over the years, especially in the beginning.”

One highlight of the collection is the magazine Anonyme Skulpturen which was printed in 1969 to accompany an exhibition of the Bechers’ work in Düsseldorf. This work would become a monograph of the same name, published in 1970, which is also featured in the Paris show.

The printed objects collected by Beupré represent the Bechers’ work from 1964 to 1977, while a presentation of their monographs, mounted under plexiglass and affixed to the gallery walls, span from 1970 to the present day.

The second section of the Paris show features a selection of 117 photographs chosen by Hilla Becher (Bernd Becher passed away in 2007) from the 1977 book Zeche Zollern II – Photographs of Bernd & Hilla Becher. Together, these prints, objects and publications are a comprehensive tribute to the Bechers’ long and prolific photographic career.


Antoine de Beaupré is a curator and the founder of the Librairie 213 in Paris.

Bernd and Hilla Becher—Printed materials 1964-2012 is on display at Paris Photo from Nov. 15 to 18.

Eric Breitenbach

Today, and leading up to and after November 6th, LENSCRATCH will be featuring work that looks at our election process. 

We start today with work by Eric Breitenbach, who has created a series, Election 2012.

Eric  has been a still photographer for over thirty years and a filmmaker for more than fifteen.

His still photographs have appeared in such publications as The New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, Details, Doubletake, Information Week, Labor’s Heritage, Essence, and Orlando magazines. He has exhibited widely. In 2012 he had solo exhibitions of his photography at The Third Eye Gallery in Varanasi, India, and at Florida School of The Arts in Palatka, Florida. Eric Breitenbach is also a Senior Professor at The Southeast Center For Photographic Studies at Daytona State College, teaching courses in photography, film, and video.

ELECTION 2012 
 For as long as I’ve been a photographer I’ve been compelled to make pictures of people. My goal is to discover something universal about a person—something viewers can recognize and even identify with. The trick is to then depict that successfully in a photograph. In early 2011, as events surrounding the 2012 presidential election began to unfold, like many Americans I was astonished at the heat of the political rhetoric. It seemed as if angry extremists were running the show.

Dismayed but still curious, I began to attend and photograph campaign rallies, political conventions, memorial services, group meetings, demonstrations, festivals, and other politically relevant events. There were thousands at the largest of these, sometimes less than a dozen at the smallest.

My goal wasn’t to document or explain anything; that, I think, is best left to the journalists. 

I set out with my usual strategy in mind—to attend, observe and make photographs. The role may be considered to be like that of an explorer, a finder and provider of artifacts that might one day be useful in comprehending, in this case, the cultural, social, and political mindset of 2012 America.

Eric Breitenbach

Eric Breitenbach has had many years behind a lens; he’s been a still photographer for over thirty years and a filmmaker for more than
fifteen.  In that time he has accrued a roster of exhibitions around the world and films and videos that have appeared on National Geographic Explorer, The Sundance Channel, The Sci-Fi Channel, Lifetime Real Women, America’s Health Network, PBS, and Florida Public Television. His still photographs
have been published in The
New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, Details, Doubletake, Information Week,
Labor’s Heritage, Essence,
and
Orlando
magazines. In addition, his photographs are held in many public and corporate collections. Eric is a Senior Professor at The Southeast Center For Photographic Studies at Daytona State College, teaching courses in photography, film, and video.

So what does this remarkable resume reflect?  It reflects a person that sees the world in a profound way, with photographic projects that range from the Election of 2012 to the Cows of India, to films that explore cultures and communities (be sure to take a look at Little Monks on his site).  His work reminds us of our humanity and our connectedness.  I am featuring two of Eric’s series, Portraits and the Rural South.


Portraits
For as long as I’ve been a photographer I’ve been compelled to make portraits. My
goal is to discover something universal about a person—something someone can
recognize and even identify with. The trick is to then depict that successfully
in a photograph.

Every photograph is a test–of both intellect and
aesthetics.

Rural South 
Observing the landscape and architecture of the rural south, I learned that beauty
can be found not just in things that are shiny and bright, but also in things
that are dark and decomposing.

A black basketball goal in a landscape of winter
weeds and bare trees—now that’s beautiful.

Elliott Wilcox, Volume 014

Elliott Wilcox, Volume 014

Elliott Wilcox

Volume 014,
, 2011
From the Walls series
Website – ElliottWilcox.co.uk

Elliott Wilcox is a London based, British photographer who recently graduated from the University of Westminster, MA Photographic Studies program. He has been the recipient of several awards including a Judges Award at the Nikon Discovery Awards, a New York Photo Award and a Lucie Award for the Discovery of the Year at the International Photography Awards. He has exhibited internationally and in the UK, his first major series Courts was part of the show PRUNE – Abstracting Reality at FOAM Gallery Amsterdam with guest curator Kathy Ryan, editor of the New York Times Magazine. Wilcox was also part of the BBC’s documentary series School of Saatchi. Wilcox's second major series Walls was shown at the Bau-Xi Photo Gallery Toronto, Canada earlier this year. Elliott hopes to continue developing his photographic practice and pushing the boundaries of his medium. He is currently working on his next major series.

Sharon Boothroyd

Childhood isn’t always the happy scrap-book time of life that we like to think it is.  It can be a stinging stew of insecurity, tragedy, and loss.  Some of those ingrediants come from the breakdown of a family unit, and photographer Sharon Boothroyd is exploring that subject with her series, If you get married again, will you still love me?

Sharon gathers memories of words spoken to separated fathers by their children.  She then produced visual representations of these phrases, drawing upon emotions the child may have been dealing with at the time.  The images, which operate like film stills, give access to private and intimate moments.  In their honestly these photographs portray common relational struggles with disappointment, anger, over-compensation and jealousy.

Sharon is originally from Northern Ireland and currently based in Oxford.  She received her MA in Photographic Studies from the University of Westminster in 2010 she has gone on to receive international recognition for this series. She is about to open an exhibition, Away, presented by Art Jericho in Oxford, running from July 26th to August 19th, 2012.  The exhibition features work by Sharon and Tim Crooks, bringing together two
different aspects of absence, this exhibition portrays the impact of loss on individuals and society alike.


Sharon is the founder and editor of photoparley.com a website dedicated to discussing
contemporary photographic art.
Images from If you get married again, will you still love me?

Photographer #406: Txema Yeste

Txema Yeste, 1972, Spain, is a fashion photographer based in Barcelona, Spain. His career started as a reporter after completing his photographic studies in Barcelona and Birmingham. He was traveling the world shooting images for newspapers like El Pais. He sees this period as very helpful for the photography he does today. His editorial fashion shoots have a narrative quality, build up of story-telling images. This is reflected in the titles given to the series as Spy in Nice, A Summer Waisting or Beyond Love and Evil. Txema is known for his sophisticated style, his experimentations, surrealism and graphic expression. His work has appeared in numerous magazines as Harper’s Bazaar, V Magazine and Vogue. Amongst his commercial clients are major brands as Lacoste, Levi’s and Nike. The following images come from various different shoots.

Website: www.txemayeste.es

Success Stories: Elliott Wilcox

Almost a year ago to the day, I wrote a post about Elliott Wilcox’s wonderful images of squash courts in England. A few weeks ago, I wandered into the DNJ Gallery in Santa Monica and felt like I was visiting with old friends. It was great to see the large scale images in person, and the prints felt much more painterly and significant than the small jpgs where I first saw his work. Annie Seaton, the DNJ Gallery Director, shared with me the many successes that Elliott has garnered over the last year.

Elliott is a London based, British photographer. He graduated from the University of Wales, Newport with a BA in Photographic Art in 2008 and the University of Westminster, MA Photographic Studies last year. He has been the recipient of several awards including a Judges Award at the Nikon Discovery Awards and a New York Photo Award. Elliott recently won a prestigious Lucie Award for the Discovery of the Year at the International Photography Awards.

Elliott has exhibited internationally and in the UK, his first major series ‘Courts’ was part of the show ‘PRUNE – Abstracting Reality’ at FOAM Gallery Amsterdam with guest curator Kathy Ryan, editor of the New York Times Magazine. He was also part of the BBC’s documentary series – School of Saatchi. His art work beat thousands of emerging art talents to the top ten artists involved in the show.

Elliott had solo exhibitions of ‘Courts’ at the Bau-Xi Photo Gallery Toronto, Canada in January 2011 and the dnj Gallery Los Angeles, USA in April 2011.

COURTS: This work examines representations of the enclosed spaces of sports courts. In photographing the empty courts, absent of the fast paced action we are so familiar with, these environments reveal themselves in a new light.The camera shows details that the viewer can see closely, revealing many subtleties that usually go unnoticed. The vivid stains, ball marks, blood and scratches force the viewer to focus on these details rather than just the court.

The courts have one single use, a ball game, with all their complicated rules and regulations. These normally sub conscious spaces become alive. Much like a gallery space is missed to the artwork, the space of these courts is missed to the sport. These large format images are slow and deliberate. The non-judgemental image creates an experience to explore, a path to revealing the unnoticed and exposing the unexposed, consequently romanticising the courts.

Congratulations on all your successes! The past two years have been quite spectacular—shows on both continents, awards, and Saatchi’s art-reality TV show. But let’s start at the beginning. Where did you grow up and what drew you to photography?


Thank you for your very kind comments.

I grew up on the South coast of England in a small market town called Ringwood. My Father is a professional sports photographer so I guess you could say I grew up surrounded by photography.

We used to have a small darkroom on the side of our house which I would sometimes be allowed to play around in and making shadow prints when I was small.
Even from a young age I was intrigued by my Fathers profession and, despite being miles apart in approach, both our photography revolves around sport. So perhaps I absorbed a love for the subject subconsciously.

Am I correct in thinking that you created Courts as a student? How did you come to create the project?

That’s right. I started Courts as a photography student at the University of Wales, Newport but continued to develop the project as I matured as an artist and image-maker.

The concept behind Courts was to create a project initially looking at space but specifically spaces that people chose to encounter, visit and inhabit.

Can you tell us about these courts in particular?

When you remove the one singular purpose ‘the game’ from these courts you are left with some very odd but intriguing. Much like a gallery space is missed to the artwork, the space of these courts is missed to the sport. These normally sub conscious spaces become alive.

Your imagery straddles the line between photography and painting, where you influenced by any particular painters?

I love the notion that my work straddles any line between photography and painting. I always find working with light and the results you can achieve with a camera truly fascinating.

I’m yet to be directly influenced by anyone in particular but a broad range of artists including Bacon, Ritcher, Gursky and Martins have had an impression on me.
Mainly, I’m inspired by any artist from any genre who is’nt afraid to push the boundaries of their medium.

I was struck by how similar the marks from the balls are to brush strokes, and how much it enriches the work to see evidence of time and human interaction with the space—did you feel this when making the work?

Yes. Each court has it’s own individual characteristics and historical background, some more than others. There is an overwhelming sense of time and human trace enriched in these prestigious environments. This was an integral part of my image-making process.

Did you have any idea where Courts would take you? Were you prepared for all the amazing opportunities and recognition that was (and is) coming your way?

II don’t think you can ever really prepare for what the future has in store. I genuinely try to take each day as it comes and am extremely grateful for any recognition. I just love honest image-making and can only hope people enjoy my artwork.

You are currently persuing your MFA—how do you balance current success and making new work?

Planning and a hell of a lot of to-do lists. I love to keep busy with lots of differential projects but I try to dedicate at least one day a week to my own photography.

What’s next?

am currently juggling between finishing my next major series Walls, that should be complete by the end of the summer, and experimenting with some new approaches.

Future projects are going to include elements of using photography to create visual vehicles, a combination of photography and sculpture.

I’m also the co-rater and Editor of a new photography publication called Splendid which catalogues an annual review of pioneering British photography which is planned for release this summer.

I’m sure that other emerging photographers could learn from your trajectory. What opportunity took your career to the next level and what advice would you give other emerging photographers?

Competitions and submissions were very useful when I first started. I also think it’s really important to prioritise shooting and spending time focusing solely on developing your own work.

Have you attended portfolio reviews?

Once and found the feedback useful.

Do you ever have periods of self-doubt and feel creatively unmotivated?

There has been periods where I find it extremely difficult to make time to shoot but then I have the opposite when I don’t have enough hours in the day to get all the ideas I have in my head down on paper. Creativity comes and goes and I just try to focus when I am inspired.

Any thoughts on being a reality art star?

I have never considered myself a reality art star. I love taking photographs and enjoy the opportunities that are thrown my way.

And finally, describe your perfect day.

A day with my girlfriend, cycling and wondering.