Tag Archives: Visual Artists

Guest Blogger 3 – Join Hotshoe Blog’s conversation On the Move: Mobile Photography at World Photo Organisation

TheGreatEscapeJanineGraf

The Great Escape © Janine Graf

Ansel Adams said it best: “There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept”. Janine Graf from interview

EXCERPT FROM WPO BLOG:

Welcome back to my fourth post leading up until Christmas. Today I turn to the world of mobile photography with the help of Joanne Carter from The App Whisperer to find out more. What’s clear is that mobile photography is here to stay; it’s fun, there’s a growing community of like-minded people getting involved and it allows people to shoot and edit on the go, giving them greater freedom than using a DSLR.

untitled2

(L-R) Joanne Carter and Miranda Gavin Hotshoe Blog at the mObilepixatiOn show. Image by Dilshad Corleone (Columnist for theappwhisperer.com)

Before this, there are two things to mention. The Sony World Photography Awards, which is judged in late January, is viewed on screen and it makes no difference what type of equipment is used to produce submitted photographs. However, the competition asks photographers to note the cameras used in their submissions. One of 2011’s finalists, Balazs Gardi followed Afghani troops and edited his work with hipstamatic. I’m trying to get stats as to how many submissions are produced on mobile devices as I would like to monitor this in relation to international photo competitions. Also, I have a suggestion for the Sony World Photography Awards. What about adding a Mobile Photography category to next year’s awards?

Secondly, as it’s the lead up to Christmas, here at Hotshoe magazine we’re offering one person a year’s subscription to the magazine, plus a free copy of the Oct/Nov 2012 edition of the magazine sent to your home. All you have to do is go to the Hotshoe International Facebook page and LIKE the magazine by the end of the week. That’s it. The team at Hotshoe will select a winner at random from those ‘liking’ the page this week and I will announce the lucky winner next week on this blog. Happy Christmas.

To read interviews with some of the key players in the world pof mobile photography and photo art click on this link On the Move – Mobile Photography, to the rest of the post. You won’t be disappointed, there are some very interesting points made by the interviewees.

Filed under: Mobile Photo Art, Mobile Photography, Photographers, Portraiture, street photography, Visual Artists, Women Photographers Tagged: Janine Graf, Joanne Carter, Miranda Gavin, Mobile photo art, Mobile Photography, mobilepixation, The App Whisperer

Portfolio Reviews – Photomonth at the Museum of Childhood with Citizen Skwith, Daniel Alexander and Dougie Wallace


Photos above © Citizen Skwith, Petting Zoo

The same day as the Tri-pod show PV took place at the Phoenix Brighton, I did a day of portfolio reviews at the Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green for Photomonth. It’s the fourth year that I’ve done this and I’m always happy to be invited back.

I never know what to expect from the people I see and there are always some surprises, such as Citizen Skwith‘s clever signs and wonderful sense of humour (see photos above). Plus, reviewers get paid which is not always the case.

I’m posting a few iPhone photos from Photomonth’s recent portfolio reviews of some of the work that I came across, although I didn’t record all of it. If you were there and want to let people know about your work, post a comment with a link to your website/work.

So, in no particular order, here are a few projects that I saw. More from the reviews to come in another post later next week.

DANIEL ALEXANDER
Daniel Alexander says of 1day6cities project. “Today it is exactly a year on from  11.11.11 when the films were all shot. The project is also being exhibited at Oxford House until the end of this month.” This gives you all time to see it before it comes down.

1DAY6CITIES from 1day6cities on Vimeo.

“1DAY6CITIES is a global photography project that took place on the 11th November 2011 – 11.11.11, in London, Dubai, Shanghai, Auckland, San Francisco and São Paulo. Using word of mouth, email and social networks we put together an international team of photographers to create a unique twenty-four hour snapshot of this day across six very different cities around the globe. At exactly 00.00 Coordinated Universal Time (world time/GMT) photographers in each of these cities captured their first image in an event that saw photographs being taken every 30 seconds for the following 24 hours.

“The brief was for the photographers to shoot the most interesting thing happening in their city, at the time they had chosen to shoot. The cities were chosen because they are roughly an equal time difference apart meaning the films show the sun travelling around the earth through the course of the day.” The edited film is shown above and the edited stills can be seen on the 1day6cities website. There is a full list of the contributors on the website.

DOUGIE WALLACE
Dougie Wallace arrives wearing a pale blue/grey and black ensemble and carrying his colour coordinated portfolio. He smells of fish. Well, his breath does, on account of the fish pie he ate for lunch. He shows me his work, see Mumbai Rickshaw drivers shot and the Stags, Hens and Bunnies (working title) project, which is near to completion, and documents the day and night antics of hen nights and stag parties in the north.

There’s more than a hint of the Carry On about the subjects of some of these shots – all of which are well observed and captured with a wry sense of the absurd. Referring to himself as ‘The Martin Parr of the Facebook’ generation, take a look for yourself…

CITIZEN SKWITH
Citizen Skwith uses photography to document the signs that he makes and places in public places. Subverting and playing with the language of warning signs, Citizen Skwith’s works are a clever form of street art made available for everyone to enjoy. His website features all of his work and is well worth a look. I’ve already ordered the time traveller Blue Plaque for my hallway.

Filed under: Photographers, Photography Festivals, street art, Visual Artists Tagged: 1day6cities, Citizen Skwith, Daniel Alexander, documentary photography, Dougie Wallace, Hens and Bunnies, london, Museum of Childhood, Petting Zoo, photomonth, portfolio reviews, Stags, stop motion, street art

Brighton Photo Biennial 2012 – Trevor Paglen’s Geographies of Seeing show podcast with Lighthouse director Honor Harger

Lighthouse director Honor Harger. Photo © Wendy Pye

Social scientist, artist, writer and provocateur Trevor Paglen uses photography to explore the secret activities of the U.S. military and intelligence agencies. For me, Geographies of Seeing was one of Brighton Photo Biennial’s to-see shows, not least for Paglen’s multi-dimensional approach to his subject matter. Who could resist taking time to look at the work of someone who is described as a ‘provocateur’, especially as I first saw some of this work at Frieze art fair a few years ago and was intrigued back then.

On the press tour of the show I got a chance to discuss the work with Lighthouse director Honor Harger who provides an informed and articulate insight into Paglen’s work in the audio podcast below. Click on the link below and then again on the link, it goes green as you rool over it, in the next page. It is 17mins 26secs long.

HonorHarger_discusses_TrevorPaglen_show

Trevor Paglen Geographies of Seeing Photo © Wendy Pye

“The Other Night Sky uses data from an international network of amateur satellite watchers to track and photograph classified spacecraft. Echoing the efforts of historic astronomers, Paglen documents astral movements that don’t officially exist.

Trevor Paglen Geographies of Seeing Photo © Wendy Pye

“In the series Limit Telephotography Paglen adapted the super-strength telescopes, normally used to shoot distant planets, to reveal top-secret U.S. governmental sites, sometimes 65 miles away from his camera; covert bases, so remote they cannot be seen by an unaided civilian eye from any point on Earth.

 Show photos above. Photo © Miranda Gavin

“Paglen coined the term “Experimental Geography” to describe practices coupling experimental cultural production and art-making with ideas from critical human geography about the production of space, materialism, and praxis. His work, such The Other Night Sky has received widespread attention for both his technical innovations and for his conceptual rigour. He is also author of three books including Torture Taxi (2006), the first book to comprehensively describe the CIA’s extraordinary rendition program, I Could Tell You But Then You Would Have to be Destroyed by Me (2007), which is a look at top-secret military programmes, and Blank Spots on the Map: The Dark Geography of the Pentagon’s Secret World, which is a broader look at secrecy in the United States.

Honor and I at the show. Photo © Wendy Pye

“Paglen (born in 1974) is an American artist, geographer, and author, currently based in New York. His work deliberately blurs lines between science, contemporary art, journalism, and technology to construct unfamiliar, yet meticulously researched ways to see and interpret the world around us. He has been exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Tate Modern, London; The Walker Arts Center, Minneapolis; The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh; Institute for Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams; the 2008 Taipei Biennial; the Istanbul Biennial 2009, and numerous other solo and group exhibitions.” From press release. Presented and curated in partnership with Lighthouse.

Filed under: Artist Talks, Photographers, Photography Festivals, Visual Artists Tagged: brighton, Brighton Photo Biennial 2012, experimental geography, Geographies of Seeing, Honor Harger, Lighthouse, photo show, space photography, Trevor Paglen

Photo Show – Helen Sears Sightlines and Pastoral Monuments on show at Klompching Gallery New York

© Helen Sear, Sightlines, Untitled 4, 2011. Archival Pigment Print with Acrylic Gesso 7.25” x 7.25”, Edition of 3. From $2,000

© Helen Sear, Pastoral Monument 11, Fumaria Bastardi, 2012, Archival Pigment Print, 27.5” x 27.5”, Edition of 3 + 2 AP’s (AP1 nfs). From $3,000.

 SIGHTLINES AND PASTORAL MOMENTS
The third solo exhibition of new artworks by the British photographer Helen Sear is on until 26 October at the Klompching Gallery in New York. Two new series will be presented as the gallery’s opening exhibition for the 2012–2013 season, accompanied by the US launch of the monograph charting a more than 25-year practice.

“Sightlines and Pastoral Monuments continue Sear’s commitment to conceptual applications, integration of photographic process, historical reference and visual allure. Sightlines is an exquisite set of 21 photographs, partially concerned with ideas about the unique object and the copy. The images themselves depict a portrait of a woman whose face is obscured by a mass-produced, but hand-painted figurine of a bird. Sear alters the final photograph through the application of several layers of white primer—gesso.

“The images, then, are also about photographing paint and painting photographs. This convergence of the unique and/or the copy is further implicated by notions of her concern with identity.obscuring the face of the woman, Sear interrupts the gaze of both sitter and observer. The spectator of the photograph is unable to know the sitter’s identity, in a similar way that she/he can’t know the identity of the person(s) who hand-painted the bird. These small-scale photographs confound our expectations in the most delightful way, and are a testimony to the conceptual and visual strength of Sear’s practice.

“Showing alongside Sightlines, is Pastoral Monuments, which expands an underlying theme of the real and the re-presentation of it. In this case, Sear references the historical photographs of the botanist and photographer, Mary Dillwyn, whose photographs from the early 1850’s depicted wild flowers arranged in domestic crockery. Sear has sourced more than 80 wild flowers from the same Welsh field and photographed them in jugs and vases from around the world.

“Through handling the resulting prints and rephotographing them—evidencing this handling—Sear believes that “the flowers and their containers become connected in a material sense, across the surface of the image.” Further, we see in the photographs familiar ideas associated with flowers—youth, beauty and mortality. In some ways, these photographs become monuments to flowers.” Press release.

Filed under: Art shows, Photography Shows, Visual Artists, Women Photographers Tagged: Helen Sears, New York, Pastoral Monuments, Sightlines

Photo News – 16th Bradford Fellowship Photography scheme calls for applicants for the first time

The Bradford Fellowship in Photography is the Museum’s longest standing cultural partnership…
In every case the scheme has contributed significantly to both the development of the Fellow’s practice and provided a unique opportunity for students in Bradford to interact with significant artists. We are proud of its legacy and excited to announce a call for the 16th Bradford Fellow.”
Greg Hobson, Curator of Photographs at the National Media Museum.

For the first time in its 27-year history the 16th Bradford Fellow in Photography scheme, which includes a £10,000 award, a major exhibition and the opportunity to work with higher education students, has been opened to applications.

AIM
To support mid-career photographers in their professional activity and works with the artist and the Fellowship partners to share knowledge and learning about the practice of photography. Specifically, “to enable a photographer/artist to explore their personal artistry and ideas to produce a new body of work”. Also, for the artist to work with students at Bradford College and University of Bradford to give an insight into the artist’s working practice and to encourage the development of the students’ own practice.

DEADLINE
3 September. Full details can be found at Bradford Fellowship in Photography.

WHO CAN APPLY
Applicants should be photographers or artists working with photography, be established in their field and have a history of exhibitions, publications, commercial and/or significant editorial work.

Applicants should have a track record of teaching at FE/HE levels and be fully committed to delivering the teaching aspect of the Fellowship in Bradford.

We welcome collaborative applications and proposed artworks created by individuals or groups of artists. Please note if a collaborative proposal is selected the fee for the project be equally divided between the artists taking part.

Applicants are required to be UK residents.

HOW TO APPLY
Submissions should be sent by post only. Include the following information in both digital (on CD) and printed formats. Project proposal (800 words max), technical requirements, project schedule, artist CV, artist statement and any supporting material (written documents). There is an application fee of £15 (cheques only) for each submission. Please make payable to ‘National Media Museum’.

ABOUT THE FELLOWSHIP
The Bradford Fellowship – a partnership between the National Media Museum, University of Bradford and Bradford College – has previously been based on nominations. This year it’s an open call.

The Fellowship was established in 1985. There have been 15 previous recipients of the Fellowship, including Fay Godwin, Donovan Wylie, Neeta Madahar, Sarah Jones, Paul Graham and Nick Danziger.

Filed under: Photographers, Photography Bursaries, Visual Artists Tagged: 16th Fellowship Photography, Bradford, Greg Hobson, National Media Museum, photography bursary

Photo News – Art Fund supports a major collection of Middle Eastern photography and show for V&A and British Museum

“In the past few years contemporary photographic practice from and about the Middle East has been some of the most exciting, innovative and varied art anywhere in the world…” Marta Weiss, curator

From the series Upekkha, 2011, Nermine Hammam, 2011. Archival inkjet print, 60 x 90 cm, Copyright V&A. Art Fund Collection of Middle Eastern Photography at the V&A and the British Museum, Light from the Middle East: New Photograph

A major collection of contemporary photography, focusing on the Middle East, has been set up for the public by the British Museum and the V&A with funds from the Art Fund. The collection has been in development since 2009 and is funded by over £150,000 of support from the Art Fund.

Most of the collection will be showcased at the V&A (Porter Gallery) in an exhibition Light from the Middle East: New Photography opening on 13 November 2012 and running until 7 April 2013. The show will be the first major museum exhibition of contemporary photography from and about the Middle East and will tour nationally in 2013.

The show is divided into three sections around key themes: Recording, Reframing and Resisting. Expect works that “respond to the social challenges and political upheavals of the Middle East over the last 30 years” or “the last 20 years”, depending on which of the two press releases one reads.

Included are internationally established practitioners such as Abbas (Iran), Youssef Nabil (Egypt) and Walid Raad (Lebanon) as well as emerging photographers including Taysir Batniji (Palestine), Atiq Rahimi (Afghanistan), Shadi Ghadirian (Iran), Mehraneh Atashi (Iran), Nermine Hammam (Egypt), Manal al-Dowayan (Saudi Arabia) and Abdulnasser Gharem (Saudi Arabia), who also happens to be a lieutenant colonel in the Saudi army.

‘Bodiless I’ from the series ‘Zourkhaneh Project (House of Strength)’, Mehraneh Atashi, 2004. Digital c-print, 76.5 x 112.5 cm. Copyright British Museum. Art Fund Collection of Middle Eastern Photography at the V&A and the British Museum. Light from the Middle East: New Photography

There are over 80 works (90 in one press release) in the collection produced by 22 (28 in one press release) emerging and established artists “living in the region or in diaspora”. The works are diverse in terms of technique and subject matter and straddle genres including photojournalism, staged and manipulated imagery.

The collection of Middle Eastern photography has been “built in response to a surge of interest in the visual arts in the region, beginning to remedy the under-representation of Middle Eastern photography in the UK”.

From the series ‘Mothers of Martyrs’, Newsha Tavakolian, 2006. Digital c-print, 50 x 76 cm, Copyright V&A. Art Fund Collection of Middle Eastern Photography at the V&A and the British Museum

To see the collection go to Art Fund Middle Eastern.

From the series ‘Qajar’, Shadi Ghadirian, 1998. Gelatin silver bromide print, 30 x 24 cm. Copyright V&A. Art Fund Collection of Middle Eastern Photography at the V&A and the British Museum. Special terms: Light from the Middle East: New Photography

Filed under: Photographers, Photography News, Photography Shows, Visual Artists, Women Photographers Tagged: Art Fund, Atiq Rahimi, British Museum, contemporary photography, Light from the Middle East: New Photography, Marta Weiss, Mehraneh Atashi, Shadi Ghadirian, V&A

Vance Gellert

I recently had the great pleasure to co-juror the Portrait Contest hosted by the Santa Fe Workshops.  Over the next several days, I will be featuring the work by several of the winners.  Almost a thousand photographers submitted closed to 4,000 images and the decision process was a tough one.  So many stellar photographs, so I am thrilled to featured these stand-out portraits.
Vance Gellert’s Second Prize Winning Image
 
Nina and Misha, Russian Performance Artists

Vance  received his MFA in photography from
Virginia Commonwealth University. He has been widely exhibited and published and has received numerous grants for
his work including one from the National Endowment for the Arts. He was
co-founder and executive director of pARTs Photographic Arts in Minneapolis where
he also curated exhibitions for 13 years. He joined IFP Center for Media Arts
as photography curator in 2008.



Vance has a natural ability as a portrait photographer, as evidenced in the series below, Real: Artists and Landscapes.  I am also featuring a sampling from his series, Smoke and Mirrors, about ritual and ceremony in health care in third world countries and western clinical practice.

REAL: Artists and Landscapes
Sometime in 1998, I was turned down for a travel grant request to curate a project of photography from Cuba. When I inquired as to what I could have added to make the request fundable, they said samples of my artwork, which was confusing since this was a request to find other people’s artwork. Heeding that advice, I went to Cuba on my own dime to find artists and brought my trusty Hasselblad. I photographed the photographers I interviewed in their studios as well as the environs in and around Havana.

There’s something about visiting visual artists in their studios. It not only yields compelling imagery, I find it creatively inspirational. After leaving the gallery in 2003, I set off on another project to find self-taught artists around Minnesota for interviews and portraits in their studios. The portraits were complemented with images of their environment that were taken on the way to or from the artist’s studio. These were paired with their portraits and a sample of their artwork in the exhibition REAL: Artists and Landscapes.

Images from Smoke and Mirrors

From the NY Times: When Vance Gellert studied pharmacology
in the early ’70s, he found that a scientific method of systematic observation,
precise measurement and disciplined testing could explain the efficacy of most
treatments. For that matter, it was a satisfying way of explaining much of the
world around him.

Mr. Gellert had always wanted to study the
role of shamanic ritual in enhancing the application of traditional plant
medicines. In 2005, as he approached 60, he resolved to combine his academic
and photographic interests by studying and documenting shamans and other
healers in Peru and Bolivia. He spent 10 months of the next five years living
with healers, studying their rituals and undergoing treatment himself.
Mr. Gellert understood that just because
the spiritual world of the shamans didn’t conform to Western science didn’t
mean that the healing he witnessed wasn’t real. “Scientists generally approach
things quantitatively and statistically,” Mr. Gellert said, “but there are
thing that don’t lend themselves well to that kind of research and
understanding.”
In fact, he was aware of powerful forces at
work; forces he didn’t know how to explain. Photos, it turned out, often served
better than scientific prose to describe what he witnessed — or experienced.

“Since it was invented, photography has
served science as a recorder of facts,” Mr. Gellert said, “but photography also
has subtleties and nuance that can communicate on a different level. When you
start looking at things that are not quantifiable, photography might be an
excellent tool.”

It is difficult to capture spiritual
experience in a photograph. Yet Mr. Gellert’s portraits often suggest powers
lurking just beyond what the eye can see.

The shamans let him into their lives and
encouraged him to photograph their treatments. They had confidence in their
practice and had no qualms about sharing it with a medical colleague, even one
who might occasionally have seemed slow to fully grasp what they were doing.

Though he started his quest
to learn about the relation between ritual and medicine, he came to see
ceremony and ritual as an integral part of healing. “The medicines are the
tool, but it is the process of interaction between healer and patient that is
most important,” Mr. Gellert said.


Photo Shows – Group show I LOVE YOU opens at Tenderpixel London and Mahtab Hussain’s Building Desires on show at mac Birmingham

©EJ Major, Marie Claire RIP (2004-2007). photograph courtesy of the artist.

Today two shows, one opening this week in London and another that has already opened in Birmingham. I LOVE YOU is a group show curated by Richard Ansett at Tenderpixel in London. The show runs from Friday this week until 16 June. One of the series on show is EJ Major‘s Marie Claire RIP (2004-2007), see photo above.

©Mahtab Hussain from Building Desires show. Photo courtesy of the photographer

Already on show and running until 10 June in Birmingham, Mahtab Hussain shows his series of portraits Building Desires at mac Birmingham. Go see, go look, go ponder identity in contemporary British society as explored through the lens of Hussain, who describes himself as a British Pakistani Kashmiri, and asks the question: What does it mean to be a British Pakistani male today?

I LOVE YOU
A photograph is a secret about a secret…the more it tells you the less you know. Diane Arbus
Major says of the series: ”Marie Claire RIP is based on an article published in Marie Claire magazine in 2002 featuring police mug-shots of the same woman taken over a fourteen year period. The article revealed that not long after the last picture was taken the woman was found dead. Marie Claire RIP is a re-staging of these images using the artist as subject.

“This piece was motivated by a desire to memorialise an unnamed person, a woman who had already died and had no control over the use of her image. At the same time the piece is intended to be non-specific in terms of the nature of the character’s demise.. While the piece challenges the veracity of the photographic portrait it also finds an authenticity in a notion of self-portraiture that involves acting. It is me and it isn’t her and yet it is her and it isn’t me at the same time.”

I LOVE YOU also includes work by Grace Brown, Natasha Caruana, Pete McGovern and Andre Penteado. I have to admit though that I am a bit stumped by the accompanying text to the show and how exactly it relates to the title and theme of the show. I leave it with you, dear readers, to follow the link and enlighten me as to how it applies. I get the gist and I can understand some of the references but am not sure how it relates. That said, I will pop along to the opening on Friday briefly as I am back on UK terra firma.

And on the topic of I Love You, here’s a link to the short video mash-up to Lionel Richie’s Hello that I posted in February but feel like linking to again.

BUILDING DESIRES
Hussain’s project – created over the last four years since he was at Goldsmiths studying for a BA in Art History – introduces three key elements of masculinity; the young boy bound by cultural and religious constraints, the teenager who begins to form a new identity on the streets away from the security of family, and the contemporary Pakistani male who has adopted desirable mainstream ideals of what it mean to be man living in the UK.

For Building Desires, Hussain is also engaging with the local community in Birmingham and has created a live working wall where the audience can answer his key question about identity. “I also add an interview (text format) that I have conducted with an individual each week, talking about masculinity and identity and also an image of the week.” I saw some of Hussain’s portraits from the ongoing series quite a while back and was impressed by his gentle approach to both the individual photographic subjects as well as the topic of identity, as a whole. However, I’ve yet to see the recent portraits.

See more from the project…

©Mahtab Hussain from Building Desires show. Photo courtesy of the photographer

©Mahtab Hussain from Building Desires show. Photo courtesy of the photographer

Filed under: Documentary photography, Photographers, Photography Shows, Visual Artists, Women Photographers Tagged: Building Desires, EJ Major, I LOVE YOU, london, mac Birmigham, Mahtab Hussain, Marie Claire RIP, portraiture, Tenderpixel Gallery