Month: December 2015

BJP #7843: Cool & Noteworthy

With features on more than 20 of the best photography projects of the last year, Cool & Noteworthy looks at the photography practitioners, festivals, exhibitions and publishers that have pushed at the medium of photography in this momentous year of the viral image. You can buy the issue now from the BJP shop. Highlights include an in-depth, all-access look at New York Times Magazine’s redesign, an exploration of Magnum photographers Paolo Pellegrin and Alex Majoli’s collaboration in Congo, festivals in Delhi and Lagos, Cristina De Middel’s remarkably productive year, and our newfound  fascination with contemporary Japanese photography. Simon Bainbridge, editor of BJP, introuduces the new issue: “Whose work most impressed you over the last 12 months? “I like to keep a list of all the things that for one reason or another don’t make it into BJP , but that I wished that we’d found room for or known about them early enough to include. This growing list, along with suggestions from colleagues and friends of the magazine, forms the basis of my thinking for our annual ‘Cool & …

2016-01-13T14:31:06+00:00

Hackney At Night

From the hulking corpses of industry to serenely flowing canals to verdant parks, David George’s Hackney By Night captures a timeless, abandoned and eerie urban landscape, unfamiliar even to long-term residents. His photographs are accompanied by a short story by Karen Falconer: cryptic fragments of text that add equal doses of context and mystery. I met David on a rainy winter’s night in the beating heart of Hackney, eager to decipher the thinking behind a most cryptic collection. “Dogs”, he answers. “I have dogs and that means I explore a lot. I discovered that at night Hackney is a different world. What I wanted was to take the reader on a gentle meander through the night, to feel like they’d have a bit of a dream.” These pictures make the urban look bucolic, a vision of the ‘broken pastoral’; landscapes that only exist as a result of industrialisation. What was there before has been destroyed, but what replaces it has its own beauty. “I wanted to emphasise how much water there is in Hackney,” George says. …

2016-01-13T14:31:48+00:00

The Hamdan International Photography Award is open for entry, with a $120,000 prize

Capturing fleeting moments of joy is one of the most rewarding aspects of photography, so it seems inevitable that the main theme for the fifth season of the Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum International Photography Award (or HIPA) is Happiness.  With a total prize pool of $400,000 and a Grand Prize of $120,000 the award is a career-changing opportunity for any photographer. Last year’s competition (themed Life in Colour) involved 30,878 participants from 166 countries submitting a total of 60,162 photographs. To ensure more photographers receive recognition, the award is divided into four categories, with winners and four runners-up in each category receiving prize money.. Happiness, in their words, the “main pursuit of humanity,” is the premier category, with the winner receiving $25,000. The Wildlife category aimed at “those who thrive on capturing hard-to-get instances that cannot be repeated, to deliver the excitement and thrill of wildlife whether on land, in the air or sea. The Father & Son category touches on a bond not often demonstrated in photography, and HIPA hope to find …

2016-01-13T14:31:27+00:00

Final winners of IdeasTap and Magnum Photos documentary photography award announced

The winners of the sixth and final edition of the IdeasTap Photographic Award, in association with Magnum Photos, have been announced. The selected photographers – Yasaman Dehmiyani, Emin Ozmen, Solmaz Daryani and Dominika Gesicka – will receive a grant of £2,500, enabling them to complete a body of work to be showcased at Magnum Print Rooms in London in July 2016. Yasaman Dehmiyani, 23 from Tehran, Iran, will complete her project 34 years after the Revolution [above], a review of events in Iran since the revolution of 1978. Emin Ozmen, 30, from Sivas, Turkey will complete his series LIMBO, shot in Syria, Turkey, Iraq and Europe, documenting the experiences and emotions of populations uprooted by conflict. Solmaz Daryani, 30, from Tabriz, Iran, will complete her series The Eyes of Earth, investigating the environmental and human impact of the drying of Lake Urmia in Iran. Dominika Gesicka, 34, from Włocławek, Poland, will complete her series This is not Real Life, shot in Longyearbyen, the largest settlement and the administrative centre of Svalbard – the world’s northernmost city. The industry …

2015-12-22T13:50:32+00:00

Philip Larkin, the Auto-Erotic Portrait Photographer Incapable Of Love

In a re-write of a letter titled Letter to a Friend About Girls, addressed to his long-term friend and Oxford contemporary Kingsley Amis, the poet Philip Larkin wrote: Only cameras memorise her face Her clothes would never hang among your interests. Larkin, attempting a more cathartic dialogue with Amis, was discussing the various women who came and went throughout the years, partners who were often ridiculed or dismissed by Amis. Whilst these words belong to an unpublished version of the poem, and were probably not meant to be seen by Amis, it reveals Larkin’s growing fatigue with Amis’s habit of condescending him, which had come to epitomise the two men’s relationship. Larkin accepts his female partners are less attractive, less desirable, than Amis’.  And yet, in writing ‘only cameras memorise her face’, Larkin, usually so apathetic, displays an ability to be both disparaging in his attitude and decisive in his willingness to preserve these women on film. In The Importance of Elsewhere, a new photobook that explores, for the first time, Larkin’s active life as a photographer, we find a much sought after adjunct to …

2015-12-23T15:53:29+00:00

Mastered with Nick Knight: 10 photographers reimagine Christmas

Tired of the saccharine, syrupy images we are bombarded with at this time of year, we asked photographers on the Photography: Mastered with Nick Knight talent programme to reimagine the festive season. The result? A collection of shots that range from the personal and thought-provoking to the kitsch and tongue in cheek; seeing the photographers take a step back from modern day representations of the festive season to create images that juxtapose seasonal revelry with wider social issues and personal experiences. Whether it’s Agustina Rodriguez’s ode to loved ones missed or Irvin Rivera’s take on an off-duty Santa, there’s at once poignancy and humour running throughout these images. The consumerism that so pervades at this time of year is also absent here, with Zuzia Zawada and Pierre Manning focusing on themes such as depression and child homelessness, and Michael Barr and Debora Barnaba emphasising innocence and naivety. Just as childhood favourite, the Grinch, muses “W​hat if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more?”     In place …

2015-12-22T11:56:43+00:00

Gear of the Year 2015

Sony A7 Mark II series The year 2015 saw the arrival of Sony’s full Mark II A7 fleet, adding five-axis full-frame sensor stabilisation to the mirrorless ILC. While the 42-megapixel A7R II [below left] is now acknowledged as the top of the range, the first update, the A7 II (24-megapixels), also improved autofocus, body design, sealing and shutter life. Its on-sensor, phase-detection AF works with many adapted Sony A-mount and Canon EF lenses. The second update (A7R to A7R II) moved from 36- to 42-megapixels with a new shutter and 4k video direct to SDXC card, plus a larger electronic viewfinder (0.78×). The backside-illuminated CMOS sensor allows first curtain electronic and silent shutter modes while curing rangefinder wide-angle colour shading and smearing. The final upgrade, the A7S II, kept 12-megapixels and moonlight-friendly ISO 409,600, while adding the advances of the A7R II and 14-bit uncompressed raw. Finally, Sony gave this to the A7 II/A7R II by a firmware upgrade. www.sony.co.uk Leica Q If you are looking for an absolutely first-class compact camera that will produce results …

2015-12-22T16:26:23+00:00

Capturing the full spectrum of gender through the lens

Transgender rights and representation has steadily built momentum over recent years, with public figures like Laverne Cox, Antony Hegarty and Caitlyn Jenner bringing a broader spectrum of gender nonconformity to the public sphere. Los Angeles-based photographer Dave Naz’s work revolves around the diversity of identity, and in his recent book Genderqueer (Rare Bird), he documented communities who are “transgender, intersex, pangender, and every shade in between”. We spoke to him about the difficulties of handling such a sensitive subject and reaching out to marginalised communities. Why did you decide to make the shift from fetish photography to your recent work on pan-gender identity?  I’ve never considered myself a fetish photographer, although I have covered the subject through the years in my work. The gender identity series came about when Drew Deveaux emailed about modelling for me – he has a look that defies gender. Around this time I found models Jiz Lee and Syd Blakovich online and asked them if I could take their portraits. All three appear on the cover of my book Genderqueer: …

2016-01-13T14:32:07+00:00

The last gasps of Norwegian rural life

At first glance the Bjelland siblings, Edvard and Bergit, are unremarkable. They grew up along four other siblings in Brusand, Jæren – a remote village on the south-west Norwegian coast, on a farm which dates back to the 1800s and has passed through their family for four generations. On the farm, horses, cows, pigs, hens and over one hundred sheep were kept. But for Norwegian photographer Elin Høyland, the Bjellands represent something of significance, and worth preserving. When Høyland first met Edvard, Bergit has recently died, the livestock had been sold off and the land was now rented out. He was now alone, save a handful of sheep he continued to look after. The rural existence that defined the land for centuries was now slowly vanishing from sight. This view was shared by Norwegian regional arts institute Hå Gamle Prestegård. They commissioned Høyland, who was shortlisted for the Photo Folio Review Award at this year’s Les Rencontres d’Arles, to visit the Bjelland homestead and create a record of the 200 year old farmhouse (a listed building) and this lifestyle …

2016-01-13T14:32:24+00:00

The teenage fashion photographer mixing advertising and pop culture

Fashion photographer Daniel Sachon is only 19, but in the last five years he’s racked up experience working for clients and publications like Models1, Select Models, Papercut Magazine, Fiasco Magazine and Slang Magazine. Disruptive Innovation, his first solo exhibition, is currently on show at the Londonnewcastle Project Space in east London. It features key images from his nascent body of work, including his playful reimagining of iconic photos of Marilyn Monroe. Sachon presents ‘Millennial Marilyn’ with contemporary products – an iPhone, a Starbucks cup.  Perhaps a comment on rampant consumerism and the bastardisation of iconography or merely combining two recognisable ‘brands’ from different eras, Sachon is keen to explore this dynamic.  “I’m inspired just as much by the art world as I am by the worlds of advertising and pop culture,” Sachon says. “Despite being inspired by both worlds and seeing so many similarities between the two, society seems to constantly disparage this link which I find inspiring and frustrating in equal measure.” “In this exhibition, I try to walk the fine line between these …

2016-01-13T14:32:41+00:00

BJP Staff