Author: BJP

Chris Steele-Perkins – A Place in the Country

BJP

“I liked Holkham because it had a foot in the real world,” says the Magnum photographer Chris Steele-Perkins. “Country estates tend to be very isolated, so they could have politely told me to piss off.” A Place in the Country covers Steele-Perkins’ twelve months photographing the 26,000-acre Norfolk home of the Coke family, whose ancestry have lived in the estate since the mid-18th century. The book is a thoughtful, intimate nod to the traditions and beauty that define the English countryside – a part of life Steele-Perkins felt he had neglected for too long in his longstanding career as a documenter of British culture. [bjp_ad_slot] “I had touched on country estates around county Durham for my book Northern Exposures,” he says. “But I still always drove past the big walls of the grounds and wondered what really goes on within them. “So I went in with a lot of curiosity, and left any expectations of clichés or stereotypes at the front gate. I made sure Lord and Lady Coke knew that, and they were very open to me being …

2015-04-17T13:59:25+00:00

Jenny Lewis: One Day Young

BJP

You don’t have to look far to find cultural representations of motherhood. The Virgin Mary, with downcast eyes; Heat-era celebrities flaunting impossibly flat, post-baby stomachs. And yet these images all tend to show a particular take: evasive, sanitised, as though to distract from the unseen horror of labour. “Everyone seems to have this fear and anxiety about the birth,” says Jenny Lewis, whose project on new mothers, One Day Young, has just been published by Hoxton Mini Press. The book consists of 40 portraits, selected from 150, of Hackney-based mothers in their homes, within 24 hours of the birth. “After my son was born, I felt this responsibility to tell people I met who were pregnant that it’s going to be OK.” She decided a portrait series could do that job for her. [bjp_ad_slot] “I put leaflets up in hairdressers, chip shops, corner shops, trying to get a varied demographic of people,” she recalls. The leaflets included a link to her website and as soon as she’d shoot a portrait, she’d publish it online so potential subjects could …

2016-02-08T13:07:51+00:00

Show and tell

BJP

Featuring one-to-one portfolios reviews with some of London’s leading photography professionals, alongside talks, presentations and panel discussions, the inaugural Offspring Photo Meet goes live in east London on the weekend of 21-22 March, aiming to establish a creative hothouse designed to nurture new talent. Providing emerging and early-career photographers with an opportunity to learn from and network with their peers in an informal workshop environment, Offspring brings together some of the capital’s top professionals with new talent eager to pitch their work, get expert feedback and learn more about the dynamics of the contemporary photography market. Limited to 50 places per day, and priced from £175 to £250, the Photo Meet will provide constructive advice alongside real-world stories from image-makers, picture editors and gallerists who have something to say, and have found new ways to tell it. [bjp_ad_slot] “The Photo Meet is designed to help bridge the gap between emerging photographers and the industry they aspire to,” says Offspring founder Mimi Mollica, who took his inspiration from festivals abroad, where photographers and professionals can meet …

2015-04-17T14:04:58+00:00

Ones to Watch: Danila Tkachenko

BJP

Danila Tkachenko is just 25 but has already won a World Press Photo – the Russian was awarded first prize in the Staged portraits stories category last year for a series called Escape, about men who have withdrawn from society to live as hermits. Exploring human identity and the impact of globalisation, the story picks up Tkachenko’s favourite theme, “the conflict between the little man and the global machine of progress, which is ready to smash everything in its path”. He’s now working on a new series which looks at “the death of Russian villages and mass urbanisation”, and why “humanity is actively trying to break apart from nature”. Another near-complete series, Restricted areas, documents Russia’s “secret cities”. Deserted places that were once sites of national importance, the abandoned buildings and machinery are now relics of the past. “I feel like I am an archeologist encountering the traces of a past civilisation in order to understand the reasons [why we] create these objects,” he says. Tkachenko has just won the Lensculture Exposure award, and was …

2015-04-17T14:08:18+00:00

Come to Dominic Hawgood’s Private View

BJP

The BJP’s International Photography Award series category attracted 733 entries from all over the world. The winner is a young British photographer, Dominic Hawgood. Dominic’s prize is a major solo exhibition at TJ Boulting gallery, the respected gallery in Fitzrovia, London. Hawgood has spent all week in the gallery, creating a “3D experience” – a new floor, new walls, and the most remarkable light show to showcase his photography. The British Journal of Photography are hosting a private view of the exhibition on Thursday 19th February, from 6pm to 9pm. There will be free wine. And you’re invited. Details are here. “The winner and runners up show that an idea or a story together with a strong execution become more and more crucial in the practice of a photographer,” commented curator and communications specialist Erik Kessels, one of the judges who’d picked him out. “This made the selected works stand out from the others.” Hawgood’s winning project, Under the Influence, is an off-centre exploration of evangelical Christianity, which uses the visual tropes of advertising to create a bold, …

2015-02-18T16:12:41+00:00

Vivian Maier – Secret Photographer, Oscar Contender

BJP

She cradles a Rolleicord camera to her breast, her eyes staring into her reflection. Until recently, the woman behind the camera was unknown, living a quiet life as a nanny in Chicago and dying, alone in a nursing home, in 2009 at the age of 83. When Vivian Maier’s cache of 100,000 images were unearthed, her work was compared with the greats of street photography. A film was made, Finding Vivian Maier, which introduced a new generation to her photography. But Maier herself was the draw; who, exactly, was the mysterious French nanny? What drove her relentless imagery, and why did she keep it so resolutely hidden? On Sunday night, at the Academy Awards in Los Angeles, Vivian Maier’s film will keep for an Oscar for Best Documentary Feature – and she will stand at the centre of the world’s eye. How would she feel about this? Maier was a private but eccentric, Mary Poppins-like figure who spoke with a delicate French trill and was never without her medium format camera. She took thousands of photographs from the 1950s to 70s, …

2015-04-17T14:09:26+00:00

Daily life, or what remains

BJP

What Remains, which won 2nd Prize in Daily life, Stories in World Press Photo announced today, is a touching portrait of a Bangladeshi couple struggling with old age. Sarker Protick, their grandson, relies on subtlety, simplicity and visual minimalism to draw the viewer into their realm and elicit sympathy. The outcome comes as an inevitable shock. “I find it intriguing how things change with time in our life – relationships and surroundings as well as how we live on with death, loss, disappearance and all that remains,” says Protick. “By default a photograph stores the past, but it also has the ability to project itself in the future. Somewhere there’s a point where time doesn’t work linearly anymore. Timelessness, that’s the point I want to reach.” Protick didn’t set out to be a photographer but in late 2008, while he was studying for a BA in marketing, his mother gave him a cell phone with a built-in camera. He started taking pictures of anything and everything, especially his friends, and once he graduated, enrolled at Pathshala, the South …

2015-04-17T14:10:53+00:00

Gerry Badger’s tribute to Lewis Baltz

BJP

“It is possibly useful to think of creative photography as a narrow but deep area lying between the cinema and the novel,” Lewis Baltz once said. The life and work of the New Topographics photographer, who died in Paris on November 22 at the age of 69, is recalled by his close friend, the photography critic Gerry Badger. The first thing to be said about Lewis Baltz is that he was one of the most intelligent of photographic artists. To say that may seem redundant, because any artist in the premier division – and Baltz was certainly in the premier division, up near the top of the table – is going to be intelligent. But there are different kinds of intelligence. Eugène Atget was undoubtedly intelligent, but it is unlikely that it was of the order of Baltz’s, which was prodigious, both in terms of his art, of his artistic milieu, of the other arts, and most importantly, of the world around him, which he regarded with a degree of healthy scepticism. Baltz was a leading figure in …

2014-11-29T16:28:32+00:00

Sputnik Photos: a portrait of Europa

BJP

It is one of those sweltering, sunny days in Warsaw – Poland is surprisingly hot in the summer, the polar opposite of the severely depressing, minus-degree winter. I’m meeting up with members of the photography collective Sputnik, which specialises in similar contradictions. Like its namesake, it’s a small blip in space in the grand scheme of things, but it manages to transmit around the globe. Focusing on substantial social, cultural, political and economic dispatches from Eastern Europe and the countries that were, until relatively recently, satellites of the USSR, its work speaks of the complexities of the exciting – and traumatic – transformation from communism to capitalism, and the ways in which these countries struggle with their newfound identities. There are nine photographers in Sputnik – Andrej Balco, Manca Juvan, Andrei Liankevich, Michal Luczak, Justyna Mielnikiewicz, Rafal Milach, Agnieszka Rayss, Adam Pańczuk and Jan Brykczyński – and I am joined by the last four, all based in Warsaw. My first impression is that they are a focused and diligent group of serious-minded, smart individuals, but …

2015-11-30T16:39:02+00:00

I Witness

BJP

If visual journalism is on the decline, you wouldn’t know it from this year’s World Press Photo competition, the winners of which go on show today at the Royal Festival Hall in London. Selected from 98,671 photographs submitted to the contest organisers, the exhibition showcases the best entries across eight categories. Including individual images alongside photo essays, they highlight some of the major news stories of last year, such as the Westgate Mall massacre in Nairobi and the collapse of Rana Plaza in Dhaka. But they also highlight many of the slow-burning issues that continue beyond the daily news cycle, such as people migration – as portrayed in the overall winning photograph by John Stanmeyer. “It’s a very sophisticated, powerfully nuanced image,” says Jillian Edelstein, one of the jury members of this year’s World Press Photo. “It is so subtly done, so poetic, yet instilled with meaning, conveying issues of great gravity and concern in the world today.” The picture portrays African migrants on the shore of Djibouti City at night, raising their phones in an attempt to capture …

2015-04-17T14:19:38+00:00

BJP Staff