Archive for September, 2009

Simon Roberts

September 14, 2009

Lots and lots of photo happenings these weeks. Need to share about one more-

On the rainy cold Friday of last week, Kara dragged me to hear an artist’s talk at the Klompching Gallery in Dumbo. I was reluctant to go, never having heard of the photographer, Simon Roberts, and it being rainy and me being tired, but it being her birthday, I willingly obliged. Honestly, it was one of the best events I have attended since being in New York. When we walked in, the talk had already begun and there were only about 20 people seated in the small gallery space; it was so intimate, as if we were meeting in his living room and he was showing slides from a recent vacation. He had just started describing how he got started with his project titled We English. Publisher Chris Boot explains, “Simon Roberts traveled throughout England in a motorhome between August 2007 and September 2008, for this portfolio of large-format tableaux photographs of the English at leisure. Photographing ordinary people engaged in a variety of pastimes, Roberts finds beauty in the mundane; the result is an elegiac exploration of identity, attachment to home and land, and the relationship between people and place. This is the most significant contribution to the photography of England in recent years.”  Typically, I am a portrait lover and not really one for landscapes, but Simon has changed me. He was incredibly eloquent in talking about his work, delving deeply into the how and why, clearly exposing his thought process and showing that there were no random occurrences, every decision was intentional. There are those photographers that have all the discourse, but fail to provide shattering work, and then there are those photographers that have beautifully stunning work, but fall short when it comes to the discourse. Simon is one of those photographers that seamlessly brings both to the table, and for that, this experience, was truly unforgettable.

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We English will be at the Klompching Gallery through Oct 24th.

Kara has a sound recap of the event here as well.

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out and about in chelsea

September 14, 2009

As I previously mentioned, I’m blogging for the São Paulo Photo festival. I wrote this post for them, but figure its worth sharing here as well.

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Last night was mayhem out in Chelsea, in a good way. Wine was free flowing, fall fashion outfits were out on display, and it was hard to walk two feet without bumping into someone you knew. Photo blogger Andrew Hetherington was all over the scene, as were curators Amani Olu, Melanie Flood and Leslie Martin, and photographers Will Steacy, Casey Kelbaugh, Amy Elkins , Justine Reyes, Robin Schwartz and Phil Toledano, among many others.

I started out the night at the Bruce Silverstein gallery to see a show by Todd Hido called “A Road Divided”
Looking from the vantage point of his car seat, and shooting outward through ever changing layered mixtures of condensation, grit, and reflecting glare upon the car’s windshield, Hido masterfully transforms the mundane terrain peripherally sandwiching the myriad of roads typically dotting the outskirts of American cities, into inexplicable poignant images, filled with cinematic gravitas and dream-like sublimity, often “crossing the double lines’ between painting and photography.
Kara, my roommate, and I now have this image from the promo card  prominently displayed on our mantle.
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©Todd Hido
From there I moved on to the Yossi Milo gallery to see the work of Simen Johan titled  “Until the Kingdom Comes”  This was a great exhibit to see in person as the images were truly large scale, each taking up an entire wall.

Simen Johan depicts a natural world hovering between reality, fantasy and nightmare.  Merging traditional photographic techniques with digital methods, Johan’s images are crafted over time and may include a synthesis of landscapes from various geographical locations and animals photographed in captivity or in the wild.

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© Simen Johan
Next up was Clamp Art gallery to see the much anticipated first New York solo show of the talented Amy Stein.  She describes her work as such:

My photographs serve as modern dioramas of our new natural history. Within these scenes I explore our paradoxical relationship with the “wild” and how our conflicting impulses continue to evolve and alter the behavior of both humans and animals. Within my work I examine the primal issues of comfort and fear, dependence and determination, submission and dominance that play out in the physical and psychological encounters between man and the natural world.
Many of the images I had come across before, but there were still a few unseen gems such as this one
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© Amy Stein
This was the scene at the gallery
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I moved on to do a quick stop at the Lehmann Maupin gallery (www.lehmannmaupin.com) to see new work by Juergen Teller, but was not really impressed. Last night also happened to be Fashion Night Out and all the fashionistas seemed to be at this exhibit. Bjork even made an appearance there!

Last stop was the Aperture Gallery, one of my favorite places in Chelsea. Aperture is a nonprofit foundation dedicated to promoting photography, you should become familiar with it if you haven’t yet. There was a group exhibit featuring the new Dutch landscape.

In keeping with the golden age of Dutch landscape painting four hundred years ago, a new visual statement on the landscape has emerged from the Netherlands. Expressed through the modern mediums of photography and video art, this new imagining of the Dutch landscape is urbanized and altered, depicting the Netherlands as the most artificial country in the world.

Artists featured inluded: Hans Aarsman, Wout Berger, Henze Boekhout, Driessens & Verstappen, Marnix Goossens, Arnoud Holleman, Gert Jan Kocken, Jannes Linders, Cary Markerink & Theo Baart, Hans van der Meer, Gábor Ösz, Bas Princen, Xavier Ribas, Gerco de Ruijter, Frank van der Salm, Hans Werlemann, and Edwin Zwakman.

Aperture was a great spot to close the night. Even after the alcohol ran out (gasp!) people stayed around for a while mingling and discussing art.

Shout out to my amazing photo friends who circled the night with me: Manjari Sharma, Kara Brodgesell, Janessa Markgraf, Erika Hokanson, and Deidre Schoo.

Sao Paulo Photo Festival

September 10, 2009

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Today is the official start day of the first ever São Paulo Photo Festival. (Unfortunately right now the site is only available in Portuguese). For a first festival, they have quite a line up of guests, lectures and workshops.  Invited international guests include  Amy Arbus, Antonin Kratochvil and Scout Tufankjian.

I’m honored to have been invited by one of the festival organizers, Jay Colton, to be the New York corespondent for the festival where I have been contributing to the official blog, writing about all the photo happenings in New York. 

Picture 5© Scout Tufankjian

This is a huge step for São Paulo and Brazil in trying to get a foot on the world  photography map. I applaud their efforts and look forward to watching the festival grow.

In honor of this, I leave you with on old self portrait of mine shot from a roof top in the Pacaembu neighborhood of São Paulo.

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Melanie Flood

September 10, 2009

I’ve just returned from a fabulous evening out at Melanie Flood Projects.

Melanie Flood Projects is an artists salon specializing in contemporary photography based in the Brooklyn home of Melanie Flood. The gallery brings artists and art lovers together in a space that juxtaposes the aesthetic dialogue of fine art with the haphazard and personal existence of the domestic setting, highlighting contrasts and commonalities in unexpected ways. The aim of Melanie Flood Projects is to create a fresh and informal meeting point for looking at, reflecting on, and talking about art.

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© Grace Kim

I have been to several events here and they never seem to disappoint. The opening tonight was titled “Under the Glass Bell, A dream” with photographs by Grace Kim, but the events are usually about much more than the photographs on the wall. By opening up her home to the art community, Melanie allows for a relaxed environment that is very conducive to meeting people, which believe it or not, is actually hard to find in New York.

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Highlight of the evening was meeting Phil Toledano, who after watching this interview of him and then meeting him in person made me fall in love with him a little bit.

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Update:  Check out the New York Times Brooklyn blog for a recap and a photo by me!

a foggy day in chilmark

September 9, 2009

I went to the beach one day in August, and it looked like this

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You could barely see two feet ahead of you. Outta the blue, or outta the fog should I say, these three children came into view. This is something new I’m trying; approaching random people and asking them to pose for me. They were a bit hesitant, but I managed to get this one shot which I quite like.  (click on image for larger view)

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Then I went over to a nearby farm to try and spy on the house where Obama was staying (ya ya I know…), but this is all I could see

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So I settled for taking a pretty picture of a boat instead.

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at the farm stand

September 9, 2009

I was fortunate to be able to volunteer at a vegetable farm this August on the island of Martha’s Vineyard (click here to read about the farm). Participating in the entire process, from seed to sale, was extremely satisfying. Who knew that I would enjoy weeding so much!

I share with you some images.

To view more images,  click here.

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I present to you a New England Clambake

September 3, 2009

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The New England Clam Bake is a traditional method of cooking foods, especially seafood such as lobster, mussels, crabs, steamers, and quahogs. The seafood is often supplemented by sausages, potatoes, onions, carrots, corn on the cob, etc. Clam bakes are usually held on festive occasions along the coast of New England.

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Sara & Elyse

September 1, 2009

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Jackson, Will, & Coleman

September 1, 2009

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