Tag Archives: Thirty Years

Bruce Morton

Some say that you can’t go home again, but I think you can go home, but you don’t always find “home” when you get there.  When photographer Bruce Morton returned to his home town of Bowen, IL after three decades, he was struck by what was missing.  A landscape that was once filled with farms and agriculture and activity has returned to untended pastures, housing a few storage structures and not much else. His stark black and white images set the mood for loss and memory in his series, Lost Homes.

Image for Lost Homes

Bruce was born in west central Illinois and received
his BS in Science from Southern Illinois University and an MFA in photography
from Arizona State University.  Bruce lived in Arizona for most of his
career, working as a desert landscape designer–a profession that connects him
deeply with the land.  He is now working as a fine art photographer and living in Illinois.

Lost Homes: These photographs are from a series I call
“Lost Homes”.  I was
raised in the rural farm area of far west central Illinois where there were
farm homes almost every half mile. 
These homes raised families for decades.  I left my home town to go to college and did not return for
over thirty years.  Upon my return
I noticed how many of these farm home sites stood vacant but yet there still
seemed to be an aura of refusal to give up. 

Many of the sites are still used for storage purposes but several are only represented by a single tree or lane.  Some still have foundations or basements left behind and the trees that surround them have a distinctive character as if they were monuments.  Maybe they are.  I have been photographing these sites for a few years under various weather conditions hoping to catch that spirit which still seems to exist. 

Playpen by Roger Ballen

















Room of the Ninja Turtles, 2003, © Roger Ballen

Exhibition on view:
March 22–May 11, 2012

North-West University Gallery
Potchefstroom Campus
548 West 28 St
018 299 4341

Playpen by Roger Ballen is a compilation of over thirty years of documentation of children, the environments they inhabit, their toys, and drawings. These images, a new body of work, Asylum, and an installation constructed specifically for the gallery will be exhibited at North-West University. Ballen’s Playpen explores photography as an art form as it takes on painterly yet sculptural roles and interacts with the viewers own childhood memories and adolescent dreams.

Children’s faces hidden by masks and crude wall drawings eerily linger throughout the black and white images by the South African photographer.

Ballen is featured in Aperture issues 201 and 173. His work also appears in The New York Times Magazine Photographs (Aperture, 2011).

Guy Tremblay

We are judgemental people. It’s human nature to assume things, to form opinions about the people we don’t know. Canadian photographer, Guy Tremblay, is looking at this phenomenon with his series, Ton visage me dit quelque chose (Your face tells (reveals) me something) . Revisiting an idea he had in 2003, he asked social workers that deal with the homeless and the addicted, to bring one of their “clients” to the shoot. It is up to the viewer to decide which one is the social worker, and which one is the client.


Guy has been involved with photography for almost thirty years, not only in creating work, but he organized the Mois de la Photo à St-Camille for the past seven years. He also teaches photography to teenagers on a volunteer basis in collaboration with different organizations. He has received grants from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Quebec, in addition to many solo and group exhibitions. His photographs are held in public and private collections in Canada, the United States, Europe and Asia.

In Ton visage me dit quelque chose, all the social workers from Sherbrooke, PQ were photographed. I asked them to bring along one of their clients for the photo shooting. One of the goals of that series was to demystify the reality of the street, to get away from the usual cliché. I wanted to put the subject in a neutral context without the reference to the street. This way, it became pretty hard to categorize them. I usually ask the people not to smile when I make their portrait. But this time I let them loose, I wanted to get true feeling not an artificial image. I wanted them to be themself with dignity and not to show them as miserable or with problems.


In 2003 I made a similar series « un trentième de seconde » (On third of a second). The former series was all made outside in a disaffected area ( An easy to find meeting point downtown Sherbrooke). For the new series, I decided to use a makeshift studio that was mounted for each meeting in the office of the street workers (Coalition Sherbrookoise pour le travail de rue) right downtown. By using this setup, I also wanted to pay a tribute to Irving Penn who was a major inspiration to me.


All the portraits were made with a medium format camera and they are silver gelatine prints, selenium toned to respect Mr. Penn’s spirit. Few years ago, Mr. Penn personally encouraged me to continue in that direction.

Émily, Jessica and Sharlie



Mathieu and Akiam


Michel M.

Michel P.






New Video: Alex Webb

Last June, acclaimed Magnum photographer Alex Webb gave an Artist Talk on release of his book, The Suffering of Light: Thirty Years of Photographs. This exquisite publication is the first comprehensive monograph charting the career of the acclaimed American photographer. The collection presents his most iconic images, many of which were taken in the far corners of the earth, and brings a fresh perspective to his extensive catalog.

Alex Webb‘s photographs have appeared in a wide range of publications, including the New York Times Magazine, Life, Stern, and National Geographic, and have been exhibited at the International Center of Photography, New York; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; and Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. He is a recipient of the Leica Medal of Excellence (2000) and the Premio Internacional de Fotografia Alcobendas (2009). Webb, a member of Magnum Photos since 1976, lives in New York City.

Find The Suffering of Light: Thirty Years of Photographs here.

Find Webb’s earlier book Istanbul: City of a Hundred Names here.

Alex Webb’s exhibition The Suffering of Light will be on view at Aperture Bookstore & Gallery beginning December 8, 2011 and running through January 19, 2012. Find the accompanying monograph here.

Aperture Gallery and Bookstore
547 West 27th Street, 4th Floor
Between 10th and 11th Avenues
New York, New York


Interview by Anna Carnick

Alex Webb, self portrait in Hong Kong while on press for The Suffering of Light.

Picture 1 of 12

Aperture is pleased to introduce “SNAPSHOT,” a new series of interviews with photography’s luminaries, inspired by the Proust Questionnaire. For our series debut, we spoke with the always thoughtful, ever-surprising Alex Webb.

Webb’s latest photography collection, The Suffering of Light: Thirty Years of Photographs by Alex Webb, is available now through Aperture.

AC: How do you describe your personality?
Obsessive, persistent––maybe even Sisyphean––but with a sense of humor.

What is your idea of happiness?
I suspect pure happiness is only attainable for brief periods.  Creative fulfillment, however, seems like a more sustainable goal––taking the work one believes in to its ultimate end.

What do you believe is your greatest achievement as an artist so far?
If I’ve made some sort of contribution to photography––and that’s not for me to say––I think it’s about having discovered a way of working in intense color in the tropics with an eye towards the enigmatic, the unexpected, and the sometimes paradoxical.

I also think that Rebecca Norris Webb and I have made a small but unique contribution to the history of photographic collaborations with the Violet Isle project, a project which created a more complicated portrait of the island––and its people and animals––than either of our individual visions could have done alone.

If you weren’t a photographer, what would you be?
Perhaps a novelist, though I am quite sure that I would have failed miserably at it.  I think I need the immediacy of the experience of the world for inspiration.  I think I do much better walking the streets and responding with a camera than staring at a blank sheet of paper in a room.

Who is your favorite artist, of any genre?
Blues is my favorite kind of music, and I love Buddy Guy’s music––though I think Stevie Ray Vaughn’s version of Little Wing is pretty special . . .

What is your favorite photograph?
I have a lot of favorite photographs, but I’ll mention one that has lingered in my mind for many years: Robert Frank’s picture of the back of a hearse-like vehicle in London.  I love the open-ended questions that Frank’s photograph poses:  Is that a hearse? Where exactly is that child in the fog running––and why?

The last book you really enjoyed?
I recently read Vargas Llosa’s The Way to Paradise, a novel that interweaves the lives of Flora Tristan, a nineteenth century social activist, and her grandson, the painter Paul Gauguin.  The depiction of the latter is particularly compelling.

Name a person—living or dead—you’d really like to meet.
I wouldn’t even know where to begin. . . . I suppose, if I spoke Russian, I would have liked to have met Tolstoy–especially on his estate.

What qualities do you appreciate most in friends?
I think probably a good-natured sense of humor, especially the ability to laugh at yourself.

Your favorite motto?
I love the following from the sculptor Henry Moore, from late in his life:

The secret of life is to have a task, something you devote your entire life to, something you bring everything to, every minute of the day for the rest of your life. And the most important thing is, it must be something you cannot possibly do.


Anna Carnick is a Brooklyn-based writer and editor. Previously the editor of both Graphis Inc. and Clear Magazine, she has been an Aperture editor since 2010. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times Style Magazine (The Moment), Photo District News (PDN), PopPhoto.com, Dazed & Confused, Casa Vogue, Dwell.com, Coolhunting.com, and others.




INTERVIEW: “Interview with Lewis Baltz – Photography is a Political Technology of the Gaze" (1993)

Tract House no. 13, 1971By Jean-Pierre Greff and Elisabeth Milon The photographer Lewis Baltz, originally from California, has spent the past thirty years, mainly in urban and suburban surroundings, bringing out what would otherwise remain below the surface, marginalised, rejected or that indeed that would exist solely as a transition between two states, between two moments or places. south dakota foundation repair . yeastrol . north carolina foundation repair . In terms of