Tag Archives: Photolucida

Filter Photo Festival Week: Samantha VanDeman

This week, I am sharing a few of photographers that I met at the Filter Photo Festival in Chicago….

It was a pleasure to see Samantha VanDeman’s terrific series, Forgotten Hotels in person. I’ve seen a number of images in exhibitions and online over the year, but to see the nuance of color and the extent of the series made the work more meaningful.  Samantha received a BFA from Columbia College Chicago and earned a MFA in photography from the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University in 2009. It was during her time at the low residency program at AIB, that she was able to have independent studies with artists such as Anne Wilson, Mayumi Lake, Jeanne Dunning, and Laura Letinsky.

Samantha already has a long exhibition resume including work seen at  Review Santa Fe, The Center for Fine Art Photography, Fort Collins, CO; Newspace Center for Photography, Portland, OR; Emory Visual Arts Gallery, Atlanta, GA; Smash Box Studios, Culver City, CA; Denver International Airport, Denver, CO; Finch and Ada, NY; New Orleans Photo Alliance Gallery, New Orleans, LA; Las Manos Gallery, Chicago, IL; Gallery 263, Cambridge, MA; Midwest center for Photography, Wichita, KS; Gallery 808, Boston, MA; Change Artist Space, San Francisco.  In 2012, Samantha was selected as a finalist for Photolucida’s Critical Mass. And most recently, she received first place in The International Photography Awards for architectural interiors. Samantha has been published in Shots Magazine and The International Photography Annual.

Forgotten Hotels 
This photographic series is of abandoned hotels that are on the verge of being demolished. Each hotel has sat vacant for ten -thirty years, with several failed attempts to bring them back to life. With plans of demolition, each structure awaits an uncertain future. In my work, I’m drawn to places that are isolated and have been forgotten about by society. I use my camera to examine these areas that often go unnoticed. Through the use of light, I try to capture the beauty the once existed in these magnificent environments. By photographing these structures, I attempt to provide a visual record of what might be lost forever.

Andy Freeberg, Sean Kelly, Art Basel Miami, Artist: Kehinde Wiley

Andy Freeberg, Sean Kelly, Art Basel Miami, Artist: Kehinde Wiley

Andy Freeberg

Sean Kelly, Art Basel Miami, Artist: Kehinde Wiley,
, 2010
From the Art Fare series
Website – AndyFreeberg.com

Andy Freeberg was born in New York City where he learned at an early age to be a critical observer of the world and the people in it. He studied at the University of Michigan, began his career as a photojournalist and now concentrates primarily on fine art projects. Freeberg has recently emerged on the contemporary art scene as a wry commentator on the art industry itself. Long fascinated with the gallery and museum worlds, he often turns his camera on the dealers, gallery patrons, artists, museum guards, and their interplay with the works of art on view. His project Guardians, about the women that guard the art in Russian museums, won Photolucida’s Critical Mass book award and was published in 2010. The Guardians will be on view at the Cantor Museum at Stanford University through January 2013. His series, Art Fare, documenting another side of the art world, will open at Kopeikin Gallery in Los Angeles in September 2012. Freeberg’s work is in many public and private collections including the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, The Portland Art Museum, the George Eastman House, and the Museum of Fine Arts Houston.

Medium Festival: Kurt Simonson

Featuring photographers seen at the Medium Festival in San Diego….


Sometimes the best part of attending a Photography Festival is not just the lectures, workshops, exhibits, and reviews, it’s simply sitting next to someone you don’t know while enjoying a beer. You learn about their life and interests, and discover over the course of the festival, what a great person you’ve met and realize you’ve begun a friendship.  This was the case with Kurt Simonson.

Originally from St Paul, Minnesota, Kurt is an artist/educator based in Long Beach, CA. Kurt’s work is regularly exhibited throughout the country and internationally, including recent exhibits at the Center for Fine Art Photography in Fort Collins, Colorado, and the Foto8 Gallery in London. His work has been featured in Fraction Magazine, he received a Curator’s Choice award from CENTER Santa Fe, and he was chosen as a finalist in Photolucida’s Critical Mass 2012.

Kurt teaches at Biola University in La Mirada, CA, where he is the Associate Professor of Photography in the Art Department. He received a B.S. in Studio Art from Biola University, a Secondary Education Credential from Whittier College, and an M.F.A. in Photography from California State University, Long Beach.

One of the projects that he brought to the Medium festival was Northwoods Journals, work that explores “the tensions surrounding our ideas of home and community, pilgrimage and displacement, belonging and connecting.”

 

Northwoods Journals

I must have been ten or eleven years old when I first ran across the peculiar envelope that bore my grandmother’s shaky handwriting: “not to be opened until my death.” Tucked in her top dresser drawer amidst other valuables, its striking phrase burned into my memory at a young age. I don’t know exactly when, and I don’t know how often, but I know I visited the envelope numerous times, pondering what could be inside. What could be so important (or tragic) that it must be kept secret in this way?

 I have never been able to shake the hold that piece of paper had over me.  More than just a letter—I was haunted by what it represented. Loaded with latent meaning, yet withholding its story, the letter is my experience of growing up in Minnesota. My family roots go deep into the folklore of the rural Northwoods and retain their hold, despite time and distance. It’s a place where my grandfather was a lumberjack, and a place where cars go to die; it’s where kids have playtime adventures, and where secrets go to be buried. It is a merger of myth and memory that grows more complex as time passes.

Andy Freeberg

Andy Freeberg should have been a major league baseball player as his projects hit home run after home run.  His new project, Art Fare, just rounded the corner and crossed home base, again. And he’s just opened an exhibition of Art Fare at the Paul Kopeikin Gallery in Los Angeles which will run through October 27th.

Born in NYC, Andy was an early observer of a sophisticated city culture and after college in Michigan, began a professional photography career in New York taking portraits for such publications as The Village Voice, Rolling Stone, Time, and Fortune, photographing the likes of Michael Jackson, Bill Gates, and Neil Young. I think being a native New Yorker cultivates a wry and subtlety pointed way of looking at the world, kind of like the cool guy at the party who holds back and observes the drunken dance floor, with a smirk and a knowing.

Stroganov Palace, Russian State Museum, from Guardians
Andy has been fascinated with the gallery and museum worlds for a long time and often turns his camera on the dealers, gallery patrons, artists, museum guards, and their interplay with the works of art themselves. His project Guardians, about the women that guard the art in Russian museums, won Photolucida’s Critical Mass book award and was published in 2010. One of my favorite series, Sentry, takes a look at galleristas that stand guard at the reception desks in the world of Chelsea galleries in NYC.

Metro Pictures, from Sentry

Art Fare: Gallery owners and their staff are usually hidden behind large entry desks and closed office doors. But at the major art fairs I’ve visited, like New York’s Armory Show and Art Basel in Miami and Switzerland, they’re in plain view in their booths.
As if on stage, you can see art dealers meeting with collectors, selling and negotiating, talking on cell phones, working on laptops, and manipulating touch screens in 21st century postures newly adapted for the latest electronic devices. I found the lighting, costumes, and set design excellent for photographing these living dioramas, where the art world plays itself.



Nina Menocal
Sean Kelly
 Annie de Villepoix

Skarstedt
Andrea Rosen
Christopher Cutts
Chuck and Andy at Gagosian

Claire Oliver

Gagosian

Hasted Hunt Kraeutler

Ileana Tounta

Leonard Ruethmueller
Marlborough
Rokeby
Gary Snyder
Spinello

Sara Macel, Plane Over Baton Rouge

Sara Macel, Plane Over Baton Rouge

Sara Macel

Plane Over Baton Rouge,
Baton Rogue, Louisiana, 2011
From the May the Road Rise to Meet You series
Website – SaraMacel.com

Sara Macel received her B.F.A. in Photography and Imaging from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts in 2003, and her MFA. in Photography, Video, & Related Media from the School of Visual Arts in 2011. Her work has been widely exhibited, including at Sean Kelly Gallery, New York; Center for Photography at Woodstock, New York; Jen Bekman Gallery, New York; and Kris Graves Projects, New York. She has received numerous awards, including winner in the 2011 Magenta Foundation Flash Forward competition, Top 50 Photographer in Photolucida’s Critical Mass Award, finalist in FotoVisura Spotlight Awards, best in show at Photobook 2012! at Davis Orton Gallery in Hudson, NY and was recently named a winner in the New York Photo Festival Invitational for her self-published monograph May the Road Rise to Meet You. The book will also be on display in fall 2012 exhibitions at the Cleveland Museum of Art and Gallery Carte Blanche in San Francisco. Her work is in various private collections, including the Harry Ransom Center and the Center of Photography at Woodstock. Sara currently teaches photography at Rockland Community College.

Joni Sternbach, 07.08.23 #1 Ditch Jetty

Joni Sternbach, 07.08.23 #1 Ditch Jetty

Joni Sternbach

07.08.23 #1 Ditch Jetty,
Montauk, New York, 2007
From the SurfLand series
Website – JoniSternbach.com

Joni Sternbach was born in the Bronx, New York. She graduated from New York University/International Center of Photography (ICP) with an M.A. in Photography in 1987. She was part of the adjunct faculty at NYU for over 20 years, and is currently a faculty member at ICP and CAP workshops teaching wet plate collodion. Sternbach uses early photographic processes to create contemporary landscapes and seascapes. Her photography has taken her to some of the most desolate deserts in the American West to some of the most prized surf beaches in the world. Her solo exhibition, SurfLand, which captures portraits of surfers in tintype, has exhibited at the Peabody Essex Museum and Blue Sky Gallery and will be on view at the Southeast Museum of Photography in 2012. A monograph of the SurfLand images was published by Photolucida in 2009. She is represented by Rick Wester Fine Art in New York City and Edward Cella Art and Architecture in Los Angeles.

Kirk Crippens

It is rare to gain access to a world behind bars, but photographer Kirk Crippens achieved that task in 2008, and since then, he has been granted one hour with the prisoners on an annual basis.  That access has resulted in the project, Hidden Population, a series of portraits on San Quentin inmates.
Kirk is one of the most prolific photographers making work today, and one of the most generous.  Much of his work explores The Great Recession, with projects that look at foreclosure, job loss, and the collapse of auto dealerships. Kirk had an early start with photography, inspired by
his grandfather who kept a darkroom in his closet. In college, he
ventured into photojournalism, interning at prestigious newspapers around the
US. Based in San Francisco since 2000 he focused his efforts on personal
projects. He has exhibited widely in solo and group shows,  he was  named Top 50 Photographer in Photolucida’s Critical Mass in 2010 and 2011, nominated for the 2011–2013 Eureka Fellowship Program, nominated for Photolucida’s book prize, and exhibited in the
International Photography Festival in Lishui, China. He is currently the artist
in residence at RayKo Photo Center in San Francisco and 2013 he will be the Artist in Residence at Newspace
Center for Photography in Portland, Oregon.
Images from Hidden Population

I was in the midst of a long process of photographing portraits inside San Quentin in May 2011 when the Supreme Court declared the overcrowding in California’s prison system unconstitutional and ordered the population lowered by 133,000 to achieve 137.5% capacity. My project began in 2008, when I petitioned the prison to allow me inside with my cameras. A year and a half later I was granted limited access and began a series of brief one-hour visits with the men. I was allowed inside once a year between 2009-12.

When I first arrived at San Quentin with my cameras, the prisoners were seated facing one another in a circle of metal chairs arranged for a gardening class. Fluorescent lights reflected off the tile floor onto their faces. The warden was present and guards were scattered throughout the room. I was given 45 minutes. Rushed and constricted, I struggled to find resonance. A man with a hand-sewn cap caught my attention, and I isolated him in my viewfinder. As I took in the scene, it occurred to me that I could capture individual qualities of the men from behind while they were participating in the class. By approaching it this way, I could also reference the hidden aspect of the lives they lead, locked up inside the prison.

When invited back in January 2012, I decided to try a different approach that included bringing a tripod and directly asking the men to pose for me. I set up my tripod in front of a cinder block wall in the San Quentin cafeteria and began asking the men if I could take their portrait. Most seemed honored; a few declined. It wasn’t how the guards or warden expected me to work, and I could feel the tension. The guards whispered and huddled together in the corner. Less than an hour later they asked me to leave and ushered me out. Although the series I’m submitting feels complete, I continue to be interested in prison culture and the political issues affecting it. I hope to visit again.

Andy Freeberg, Spinello, New York Pulse 2010, Artist: Zachari Logan

Andy Freeberg, Spinello, New York Pulse 2010, Artist: Zachari Logan

Andy Freeberg

Spinello, New York Pulse 2010, Artist: Zachari Logan,
New York, 2010
From the Art Fare series
Website – AndyFreeberg.com

Andy Freeberg was born in New York City where he learned at an early age to be a critical observer of the world and the people in it. He studied at the University of Michigan, began his career as a photojournalist and now concentrates primarily on fine art projects. Freeberg has recently emerged on the contemporary art scene as a wry commentator on the art industry itself. Long fascinated with the gallery and museum worlds, he often turns his camera on the dealers, gallery patrons, artists, museum guards, and their interplay with the works of art on view. His project Guardians, about the women that guard the art in Russian museums, won Photolucida’s Critical Mass book award and was published in 2010. The Guardians will be on view at the Cantor Museum at Stanford University through January 2013. His series, Art Fare, documenting another side of the art world, will open at Kopeikin Gallery in Los Angeles in September 2012. Freeberg’s work is in many public and private collections including the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, The Portland Art Museum, the George Eastman House, and the Museum of Fine Arts Houston.