The managing director of a factory retires, retreats to his summer house and creates enchanting miniature works of art – or even whole worlds? – inside black cardboard boxes with the aid of scissors, glue, photographic self-portraits and paper. He then takes photos of his creations, always in black and white.
This gentleman is Gilbert Garcin, born 1929 in Marseille. “However, the stories that lie behind my pictures have not been told from beginning to end”, says Gilbert Garcin. “I am merely attempting to create a space for the viewer to project their own ideas onto to allow them to invent their very own adventures”.
Funny, subtle, ironic, slightly melancholic, quite obviously always addressing existential issues, viewers find themselves in almost surreal scenarios. The atmosphere is sometimes reminiscent of Jacques Tati’s Monsieur Hulot films, and sometimes of Rene Magritte. Garcin’s images seem to reflect “…the entire spectrum of human comedy. Each of his minimalistically designed photographs is like a theatrical act on the obscure stage of life”, a critic once wrote. The selected works on display at Schloss Neuhardenberg throughout 2013 were chosen by the artist himself.
Mar 16 - Nov 11, 2013
Today, the Open Society Foundations will mark their 20th group exhibition of “Moving Walls 20” at their new location in midtown Manhattan. Initially conceived 15 years ago as a way to highlight the foundation’s issues and to support documentary photography, the exhibition highlights and adds value to important (and often under-reported) social issues.
“Moving Walls 20” features work by Katharina Hesse, Yuri Kozyrev, Fernando Moleres, Ian Teh, and Donald Weber. The exhibit highlights societies in the Arab region and in China undergoing transition amidst political and economic change, as well as people victimized by repressive regimes and faulty justice systems in North Korea, Sierra Leone, and Ukraine.
Above you can see two pictures of Katharina Hesse‘s project, Borderland: North Korean Refugees. The project tells the individual narratives of North Korean refugees along the Chinese border. Because they’re classified by the Chinese government as ‘economic migrants’, the refugees are ineligible for official UN refugee status.
“After experiencing a world like this, it just didn’t feel ‘right’ to take pictures and move on to the next job,” Hesse wrote. She has been shooting the project for nine years.
Find more photos and information on TIME LightBox.
May 8 – Dec 13, 2013
Northern China, October 2003. Kim Jeong-Ya (a pseudonym), 67, who lives near the North Korean border in Yanji, China, belongs to a handful of Chinese activists who have dedicated their lives to helping North Koreans make a safe passage from North Korea to South Korea via mainland China. Most foreign activists are simply expelled from China if caught participating in assistance missions, whereas, local Chinese and some South Koreans have faced severe punishment. Kim has been imprisoned twice and beaten up by North Korean agents operating in China. Kim’s relatives, who did the same kind of support work “disappeared” in North Korea. Since her release from jail, Kim has been under intense police surveillance. Her meager life savings was confiscated by local authorities, and she is not allowed to leave her home in the suburbs of Yanji.
Seoul, Korea, November 2008. Park Lee Hwan (a pseudonym), 67, stands in the hallway of a building that houses North Korean refugees living in Seoul. It took her five years to travel clandestinely from China to South Korea. Initially, Park was planning to visit her relatives in China and do temporary work, but her relatives convinced her not to return to North Korea. Park made her way to Beijing, where she presented herself at the South Korean Embassy. Embassy staff sent her to a third country, the Philippines, and then she went to Seoul. Park’s four daughters, who remain in North Korea, do not know that their mother has left China and now lives in Seoul. Park says South Korea is “paradise” compared to North Korea.
Héctor Mediavilla’s series, S.A.P.E. documents the Sapeurs of Brazzaville in the Republic of Congo. The term Sapeur comes from la sape, which is French slang meaning “to dress with elegance and style”. It is also the abbreviation for Société des Ambianceurs et des Personnes Élégantes, (Society of Tastemakers and Elegant People).
“At the beginning of the 20th century when the French arrived in Congo, the myth of the Parisian elegance was born among the youth of the Bakongo ethnic group, who were working for the colonizers. At that time, the white man was considered superior, someone showing better manners and elegance.
In 1922, Grenard André Matsoua was the first Congolese ever to come back from Paris dressed as a genuine French. His arrival caused indescribable commotion and admiration among his fellow countrymen; he became known as the first Grand Sapeur.
Having the respect and admiration of his community, today’s Sapeurs consider themselves artists. They add a touch of glamour to their humble environment through their refined manners and impeccable dressing styles. Each of them is unique showing a particular repertoire of gestures. They all share the same dream: To go to Paris and return to Brazzaville as an aristocrat of supreme elegance.” (Héctor Mediavilla)
(thanks to NPR)
May 4 - June 2, 2013
Have you got plans for the next days? If not here’s an exhibition you might want to visit: The Howard Greenberg Gallery presents William Klein’s work in the exhibition ‘Paintings, etc.’
The photographs range from early experiments with bulbous curves of light and stark Mondrian-like barns, to sharp high fashion and blurry, kinetic street scenes.
“I had an experience that was kind of backward,” he said, explaining how as a young man working with an Italian architect he went from painting to shooting. “Instead of thinking that photography was a step down, it brought me a step up, to transpose and modify things.”
“What you see here in this show is the very fluid interplay between what people usually see as polar opposites: abstraction and figuration,” said Mr. Campany, who also wrote the introduction for ‘William Klein: ABC,’ published by Abrams.
“Klein isn’t interested in purity. It’s not about distinguishing media. It’s about the between spaces. Some think the show is schizophrenic. But you can see a graphic sensibility that holds it all together.”
Find more information and pictures on the Lens Blog.
Running through April 27, 2013
Peter Hujar was a classical portrait photographer; one who despite choosing diverse, often shocking, subjects was relatively conservative with composition. His most widely known pieces, a 1975 portrait of friend Susan Sontag lying on a bed and Candy Darling on her Deathbed – Darling, also a friend, was born James Lawrence Slattery and was part of Andy Warhol’s superstar set — exemplify this approach:
Hujar gets us close to both, but we are never too intimate. As Sontag stares into the distance, and Darling beyond us, it is as if they are detached from their surroundings. And though posed, neither is performing.
Visit TIME LightBox for more pictures and information.
Feb. 28 - Apr. 20, 2013
ABOUT THE PROJECT
“My work examines the disappearance of Nazi Germany‘s concrete fortification on the Atlantic Coast remnants around Cap Ferret. Not only their physical disappearance because of corrosion, water and sand, but also the one that results from man converting those relicts by using them in many different ways.
Those different layers/stages of disappearing are, what I‘m trying to capture, photographically and with regards to content. A ‘snapshot’ of what a place like Cap Ferret is ‘now’, sixty years after the end of the Second World War. Getaway destination and historical location both at the same time.” (Markus Oberndorfer)
More info on his website.
The book will be first presented in a few days, at Galerie OstLicht, Vienna on March 22, 2013, 8pm.
PHOTOFILM: OMEGA POINT
EXCERPT from “THE IMAGE OF THE INBETWEEN” by LYDIA NSIAH
“The clouds appear to move intermittently in the sky above Cap Ferret. Several bunkers, which have almost entirely sunken in the sea and sand, are scanned by the photo-camera. Waves break on them. The viewfinder moves in the panorama, and focuses one of the objects: “NOS!”/”WE!” is written on it. […]” (read more)
Markus Obersdorfer’s digital photofilm ‘Omega Point’ (2008/2012) consists of around 1300 single photographs, which are turned from ‘still’ into ‘moving’ pictures by the filmic montage. The song, and with it the title for the film, have been contributed by the American sound artist DDay One.
The photographs move along with the rhythm of the sound. Image and sound interlink and merge. The photofilms subjets are the former fortifications of World War II in Cap Ferret, animated by stop-motion technique. Image by image, and sound by sound, the void of the Cap opens up, and with it does the temporal intermediate of the bunkers, which are swallowed by the ravages of time.
Watch Markus Oberndorfer’s 2008 photofilm ‘Omega Point’ with music written and produced by DDay One:
Find more exhibitions of his work here.
The Swiss photographer Georg Gerster (born 1928 in Winterthur) has “ennobled the traditional aerial photograph” in the course of half a century of aerial photography. In doing so, the Doctor of German Studies not only gained technical mastery, but also combined his fascination with abstract forms and intoxicating colours with a thirst for knowledge.
In Gerster’s case, the alienation effect inherent in the aerial photograph is by no means an end in itself. Gerster uses it to awaken the viewer’s respect for the beauty and uniqueness of our planet. He also avails of it to promote an understanding of the old structures and life forms that have evolved over the centuries, and to document the impact on the ecology of human intervention.
Fifty years after his first ‘photography flight’ to the Sudan in 1963, the Fotostiftung Schweiz in Winterthur is devoting a monographic exhibition to his work. Under the heading “The Staff of Life. Aerial Photographs by Georg Gerster” it highlights the theme of world food supplies, a focal point in Gerster’s oeuvre. In addition to a number of classics, the exhibition also presents numerous works that have been enlarged for the first time. (+)
Mar. 15 - May 26, 2013
A member of the American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) since 1957, Art Shay’s photography career spans nearly seven decades. He has published over 30,000 photographs, which include the likes of kings, queens, presidents, athletes and celebrities as well as the common man. He went to Las Vegas and put himself at risk, shooting the Mob with cameras hidden on his body; he even had his wife’s handbag outfitted with a lens.
Having established a world-wide reputation for his unusual portraits, Art Shay has continually made entertaining and humorous photographs as well. He has spent his life crafting a visual biography of the people of this country, and the resulting images range from the serious to the silly to the sublime. His pictures of Marlon Brando, Nelson Algren, Judy Garland, Diana Ross and hundreds of other luminaries are not the usual portraits; they are people off-guard, memorable for their humanity rather than their celebrity. (read more)
Watch a very funny and interesting interview with Art Shay here.
Mar. 2 - Apr. 6, 2013
From traditional Americana – classic iconography including flags and road imagery – to gritty visions of the realities of mid-century American culture, “Happy-Go-Lucky” explores the complex history of America in the 1900s.
Post-war America was a place of euphoric positivism and untamable determination, fueled by winning World War II, reaching the moon and taming the atom. Despite this, the American Dream – the notion that all people are entitled to “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” – remained a distant dream as it was punctured time and time again by war, economic instability and civil rebellion. The show incorporates photographs of life in inner-city Chicago housing projects, scenes of social unrest and defunct industry, fish-eye views of Manhattan and reportage that captures the zeitgeist of the era.
Many of these original photographs are press prints, which often carry ink stamps and news clippings on the back and touch-ups or crop marks on the front, adding to their historical significance. This exhibition presents a new way of looking at and collecting 20th Century American pictures. (read more here; via Le Journal De La Photographie)
Feb. 22 - Apr. 14, 2013
Around 180 photographs from German, Swiss and Czech collections, which have largely never been shown until now, will bear witness to the phenomenon Miroslav Tichý’s reception in art history and his aesthetic allure.
Miroslav Tichý began creating art in the late 1940s when he studied painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague. He broke off his academic pursuits once the Communists assumed power and, after serving in the military, returned to his hometown of Kyjov. He led a very withdrawn life there and, no later than 1971 when he lost his atelier, devoted himself exclusively to photography. Largely furtively, he had been taking pictures of women of every age and build in his Czech hometown of Kyjov since the 1960s.
He took pictures with, among other things, cameras he built himself and, by manipulating the images, endowed his photographs with a distinctive aesthetic visual language. His hitherto virtually unknown works appeared on the art horizon like a comet at the Biennale in Seville in 2004. Despite his sudden fame, he did not give up his withdrawn life and tried to resist being appropriated by the art world.
After systematically researching the person Tichý Zephyr is now presenting the latest findings about the photographer’s life and work in the exhibition and comprehensive companion publication. Based on verified sources and accounts from independent eyewitnesses to events, they cast a completely new light on the life of the artist who died in 2011. Behind the elusive mystery Tichý, an intelligent, cultured and freedom-loving artist who radically tried to resist every form of cooption has been discovered. (+)
Feb 24 - May 26, 2013
Kehrer Verlag is publishing a catalog to the exhibition in which independent eyewitnesses to events speak for the first time and talk about Tichý’s life and art.
Based on a wide selection of previously unpublished images and documents, the publication reflects critically on the career of the great artistic personality and revisit the myths of his existence. (+)
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