EXHIBITION: CHANG CHAO-TANG - IMAGES OF YOUTH (1959-61)
at Gallery Tosei, Tokyo, Japan

Chang Chao-Tang was a high school student in 1959 when he borrowed his older brother’s Aires Automat 120 twin-lens reflex camera without much thought. He liked going for long walks with the camera after school; it eased the burden of his homework. Eventually, he found himself taking photos with the camera every day, photos of common people and places in Taiwan, like youngsters poking out of street corners or at beaches, farm animals, and dolls.

“Those images are so pure and innocent,” he said. “You can’t go back to that kind of feeling.”

Mr. Chang hardly suspected that he would grow up to become one of Taiwan’s most important photographers — in fact, he had such little regard for this kind of future that he did not even bother to save his negatives. Yet half a century later, these images have been in major exhibitions, including one that opens this week at the Gallery Tosei in Japan. (more info and pictures here)

Exhibition dates:
April 4 - April 26, 2014

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EXHIBITION: EXPERIENCING NIRVANA
at Proud Camden, London, UK

This exhibition, by photographers Charles Peterson and Steve Double, reveals a rare and intriguing insight into one of the most influential and important rock bands of the modern era, marking the 20th anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s untimely death.

Both Peterson and Double began photographing Nirvana at around the same time, in 1989 when the band had just signed to the Sub Pop label and released their first album ‘Bleach’. They are considered the foremost grunge photographers capturing the birth of the scene and the spirit of Nirvana.

Peterson said that the grunge aesthetic was "…a supercharged lifestyle of expression, a familial community made up of ‘stray dogs from every village’ who all had the same aching need for something to do, preferably loud and diverting”.

After Kurt Cobain’s tragic death in 1994, many people felt that the grunge scene had died. These photographs captured the essence of this generation and features iconic genre-defining live images of Nirvana playing onstage alongside never before seen images of the notoriously private band off-stage. (+)

Exhibition dates:
Mar. 27 - May 11, 2014

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EXHIBITION: CHARLES MARVILLE - PHOTOGRAPHER OF PARIS
at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA

Widely acknowledged as one of the most talented photographers of the nineteenth century, Charles Marville (French, 1813–1879) was commissioned by the city of Paris to document both the picturesque, medieval streets of old Paris and the broad boulevards and grand public structures that Baron Georges-Eugène Haussmann built in their place for Emperor Napoleon III. This exhibition presents a selection of around one hundred of his photographs.

From 1862, as official photographer for the city of Paris, he documented aspects of the radical modernization program that had been launched by Emperor Napoleon III and his chief urban planner, Baron Georges-Eugène Haussmann. In this capacity, Marville photographed the city’s oldest quarters, and especially the narrow, winding streets slated for demolition. Even as he recorded the disappearance of Old Paris, Marville turned his camera on the new city that had begun to emerge. Many of his photographs celebrate its glamour and comforts, while other views of the city’s desolate outskirts attest to the unsettling social and physical changes wrought by rapid modernization. (read more)

Exhibition dates:
Jan. 29 – May 4, 2014

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EXHIBITION: HERMANN LANDSHOFF - A RETROSPECTIVE
at Münchner Stadtmuseum, Munich, Germany

Landshoff grew up in Munich-Solln as the son of a well-to-do Jewish family that was very much involved in the city’s art, literature and music scenes. After training at Munich’s Kunstgewerbeschule (School of Arts and Crafts), he became a member of the circle of well-known typographer and book illustrator Fritz Helmuth Ehmcke. It was here that Landshoff met the Nuremberg illustrator Richard Lindner alongside whom he would subsequently work as part of the creative team at the Knorr & Hirth publishing house.

When the Nazis seized power in 1933, Landshoff was forced to emigrate, initially settling in Paris where he worked as a fashion photographer. Between 1936 and 1939, his images were published in the popular ‘Femina’ magazine and in the French edition of ‘Vogue’. He was then forced to flee France and, after an eventful journey spanning 1940 and 1941, he eventually pitched up in New York.

Landshoff soon became one of the most fascinating fashion photographers to collaborate with legendary art director Alexey Brodovitch for fashion magazines such as ‘Harper’s Bazaar’, ‘Junior Bazaar’ and latterly also ‘Mademoiselle’. He developed his own style as a fashion photographer, portraying the models in life-like everyday situations. American fashion photographer Richard Avedon considered himself to have been profoundly inspired by Landshoff, even being moved to claim that ‘I owe everything to Landshoff’.

There is little doubt that Hermann Landshoff is one of the last great unsung heroes in (the history of) 20th century photography.

The exhibition will show a selection of more than 250 of Landshoff’s fascinating photographs for the first time, with subjects drawn from across the entire spectrum of his work, from fashion to portraits and architecture. (read more)

Exhibition dates:
Nov. 29, 2013 - Apr. 21, 2014

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ARAM AVAKIAN - KEEPING JAZZ’S RHYTHM WITH A SHUTTER

"My father, Aram ‘Al’ Avakian, was probably just a kid when he picked up the family camera one day and started taking pictures. I never asked him what year it was. But photography was part of his young life. So was jazz.

Those two passions came together when my uncle George, a record producer, asked my dad to be the visual sideman during now historic recording sessions for Columbia Records. From Duke Ellington to Chet Baker, Dad photographed them all. He even persuaded George, his older brother, to sign Miles Davis. And he once impersonated Harry James — in French, no less.

Some of the photos shot in the studios of Columbia Records were used on album covers, some for publicity. Columbia kept the negatives and contacts in its archives, but most of Dad’s photographs were not used, and they sat unseen in the company’s archives for decades. When Sony, which had purchased Columbia, returned them to me, I was overjoyed: Not only were they in great condition, but they also formed a rarely seen chronicle of seminal jazz artists at work and at the peak of their creative powers.

We hope to share Dad’s soulful, intimate jazz images with the public on a wide scale soon. For now, three of his Miles Davis photos are prominently displayed in the American Cool exhibit at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery in Washington. [Feb 7 - Sep 7, 2014] (Alexandra Avakian; find more info and pictures on LENS)

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EXHIBITION: PHILIPPE HALSMAN - ASTONISH ME!
at Musée de l’Élysée, Lausanne, Switzerland

Photographer Philippe Halsman had an exemplary career. Over a forty-year period, in Paris during the 1930s and in New York from 1940 on, he developed a broad range of activities (portraits, fashion, reportage, advertisements, personal projects, commissions from individuals and institutions). The Musée de l’Elysée presents the first study dedicated to his entire body of work, with a selection of over 300 pieces.

This project, produced in collaboration with the Philippe Halsman Archive, includes many exclusive unseen elements of the photographer’s work (contact sheets, annotated contact prints, preliminary proofs, original photomontages and mock-ups). The exhibition shows Philippe Halsman’s creative process and reveals a unique approach to photography: a means of expression to explore. (read more)

Find more pictures of the exhibition here: LightBox, PhotoDigest

Exhibition dates:
Jan. 29 - May 11, 2014

The show will travel to Jeu de Paume (Paris), and Kunsthal Rotterdam (Netherlands) in 2015, with more venues to be announced.

 
PHOTOBOOK: PHILIPPE HALSMAN - ASTONISH ME!

The exhibition catalogue will be published in French by Éditions Photosynthèses and in English by Prestel, including essays by Sam Stourdze, Anne Lacoste, Marc Aufraise, and the Halsman family. (+)

Date of publication:
UK: Feb. 17, 2014  |  USA: Mar. 17, 2014

 
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EXHIBITION: WILLIAM S. BURROUGHS - TAKING SHOTS
at The Photographers’ Gallery, London, UK

William S. Burroughs (1914-1997) was one of the most influential American writers of the 20th century. Despite his prolific achievements as a novelist, essayist, spoken word performer and painter, Burroughs’ work as a photographer is rarely acknowledged.

Coinciding with the centenary of Burroughs’ birth, Taking Shots will be the first exhibition worldwide to focus on Burroughs’ vast photographic oeuvre and offers new and important insights into his artistic and creative processes. Burroughs’ photographs, striking in their self-containment, lack any reference to other practitioners or genres.

While they can be gathered into categories of street scenes, still lifes, collage, radio towers, people – his dynamic approach to image making sits outside of any canonical structure. (+)

Exhibition dates:
Jan. 17, 2014 - Mar. 30, 2014

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EXHIBITION: JACQUES-HENRI LARTIGUE - BIBI
at The Photographers’ Gallery, London, UK

The exhibition focuses on photographs from the 1920s that depict Lartigue’s marriage to Madeleine Messager, known as Bibi, his first wife and the mother of his only child. This is the first international showcase of the exhibition following its unveiling earlier this year in Les Rencontres d’Arles.

Bibi features dozens of black and white photographs including images from the couple’s visit to London. The photographs trace Lartigue and Bibi’s relationship from their early days as a loving couple and glamorous socialites - to subsequent upheavals and calamities which eventually led to their separation. (+)

Exhibition dates:
Oct. 11, 2013 - Jan. 5, 2014

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EXHIBITION: BRAZILIAN MODERNISM 1940-1964
at Museum für Fotografie, Berlin, Germany

In this major exhibition at the Museum für Fotografie in Berlin, four exemplarily chosen photographers capture Brazil’s path to modernism. Three of the photographers were European émigrés: Thomaz Farkas was Hungarian, Marcel Gautherot came from France, and Hans Gunter (Günter) Flieg was born in Germany. Their foreign roots only underscore Brazil’s international appeal in the years after the Second World War up to the beginning of the Brazilian military dictatorship in 1964. (read more)

Exhibition dates:
Sep 27, 2013 - Jan 5, 2014


IMAGE INFO:
#1: © Marcel Gautherot, ca. 1943, Guerreiros, Maceió, Alagoas
#2: © Thomaz Farkas, 1945, ‘Staudamm
#3: © Hans Gunter Flieg, ca. 1956, Electroradiobras, São Paulo
#4: © José Medeiros, 1952, Gavéa, Rio de Janeiro

 
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EXHIBITION: EDITH TUDOR-HART - IN THE SHADOW OF TYRANNY
at Wien Museum, Vienna, Austria

During the 1930s photography became implicated in the vital political and social questions of the era as never before. A key exponent was the Viennese-born photographer Edith Tudor-Hart, who left Austria for Britain after being arrested for her political activities in 1933: She was working as an agent for the Communist Party of Austria. She escaped long-term imprisonment by marrying an English doctor, Alexander Tudor-Hart, and was exiled to London shortly afterwards.

Having trained at the Bauhaus in Dessau, she pursued a career as a documentary and portrait photographer, covering issues of poverty, social division and child welfare in Vienna, London, Tyneside, Wales and Scotland. (+)

Tudor-Hart’s life story as a photographer is tied to the great political upheavals of the twentieth century. Born Edith Suschitzky (she’s Wolfgang Suschitzky's sister) in Vienna in 1908, she grew up in radical Jewish circles in a city ravaged by the impact of the First World War. Her childhood was dominated by social issues in a culture acutely aware of the impact of the Russian Revolution. (+)

Tudor-Hart’s photography constitutes a sophisticated Realism, marked by its directness and capacity to communicate. Notoriously, she also worked as a low-level agent for the Soviets in both Austria and Britain and was pursued by the security services until her death in 1973. The exhibition includes remarkable black and white photographs capturing the politically-charged atmosphere of interwar Vienna, Britain during the slump of the 1930s, and Tudor-Hart’s psychologically penetrating imagery of children during the post-war years. (+)

Read an interesting article on Edith Tudor-Hart and her extraordinary story in Telegraph.

Exhibition dates:
Sep. 26, 2013 - Jan. 12, 2014 (Wien Museum)


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