Author: Susanna D'Aliesio

On show: Autophoto at Paris’ Fondation Cartier

By the end of the 19th century, the camera and the car had helped pave the way for a new, more modern perspective – images by freezing time, from multiple perspectives, and automobiles by speeding things up. Now the Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain in Paris is devoting a huge exhibition to the two, showing how they have altered our lives and our visions of them – and how they continue to evolve. As curators Xavier Barral and Philippe Séclier comment: “Over the last few years we have witnessed an industrial, societal and environmental turning point in automobile history. On the other hand, photography has never been shared so much.” With the automobile and the camera, they explain, everyone can be in action in space and in time – cars providing almost everyone, everywhere, with autonomy and movement, and the photography allowing them to record their presence in history. “It was time to unify these two popular techniques, which have transformed the social bond into an artistic journey,” say the curators. “And this is the first time that a photographic exhibition of this magnitude has been organised on this theme.” …

2017-04-20T17:05:34+00:00

Breakthrough Awards: how to impress judges Diana Markosian, Juno Calypso and Hayley Louisa Brown

“I like it when you can tell they had fun making it, that they did it for themselves before anyone else,” says photographer Juno Calypso. “That criteria probably doesn’t apply well to documentary projects but I take pictures of myself in wigs and tacky lingerie, so what do I know?” She’s a fast-rising star in photography who launched her career with a series of self-portraits playing a fictional character named Joyce, but she’s also helping out as one of the judges of this year’s BJP Breakthrough Awards. She likes underdogs and “a photographer or a subject that isn’t already over-represented in the history of photography”, she says but, having been on the other side of the fence, adds that she knows how scary it can be to enter a prize. ”I know how it feels to place all your hopes into a single competition,” she says. “I don’t want to make lazy decisions [when judging]. What I will say though, is even if you do get rejected – keep applying or just do your own …

2017-04-26T10:44:43+00:00

Meet the experts: Offspring Photo Meet returns to Hackney

“If you want to get your work seen and your talent celebrated you should look no further!” says Mimi Mollica, photographer and founder of the Offspring Photo Meet. “Photo Meet has become the hub photographers needed in London. With portfolio reviews, talks, workshops, projections, great offers and our beefed up Best Portfolio Award, the two-day event will be fun and inspirational.” Launched in 2015, Photo Meet returns to Hackney’s Space Studios on 12 and 13 May with a stellar lineup of photo experts, including a portfolio review including experts from Tate Modern, British Journal of Photography, The Photographers’ Gallery, The Observer, FT Weekend Magazine, Vice, and agencies, production companies, galleries, and publishers. Rising photographic stars Juno Calypso and Francesca Allen will join Tate Modern curator Shoair Mavlian on Friday evening to discuss making work in the internet era, plus rewriting the boundaries of the representation of sex, gender and identity. Jörn Tomter and Luke Archer will host the Saturday Beer O’Clock, presenting their self-produced and self-published magazines, Loupe magazine and I love Chatsworth Road. Laura El-Tantawy show her new …

2017-04-18T14:07:33+00:00

On show: Sergey Ponomarev’s A Lens on Syria

“With this exhibition, I will reveal something different to what Western and British society has seen about Syria,” says Sergey Ponomarev. “Most of the visual narratives that come from Syria are shot from the rebel side – people suffering from the government shelling, suffering malnutrition or lack of water, and just recently being attacked with chemical weapons. I will show images from normal life.” The Pulitzer Prize-winner is talking about his upcoming exhibition at the Imperial War Museum London A Lens on Syria, in which he’s showing two award-winning series created in partnership with The New York Times – Assad’s Syria (2013-2014) and Europe Migration Crisis (2015-2016). His mission, he says, is “to be the eyes of society”. Ponomarev has been following the Arab Spring since 2011, when anti-government protests first started to emerge in Syria but he says that from the start, “it was clear that photojournalist with Russian background couldn’t join the rebels”. Historically the Soviet Union supported the Syrian government and that remains the case today; “when the Free Syrian army clustered into several Jihadi groups, some …

2017-05-25T10:41:25+00:00

Breakthrough Awards 2017: getting the inside track from the judges

“A good project could be one of many different things,” says Vivienne Gamble, director at Seen Fifteen Gallery and Peckham 24. “Sometimes it will be the story that the photographer is telling that sets their project apart. The storytelling power of photography is one of the reasons that I’m most drawn to the medium. “I’m drawn to experimental projects, and to artists who are playing with or pushing the boundaries of photography,” she continues. “When it comes to choosing projects to show in the gallery, I look for ones that are going to expand beyond the confines of the gallery walls.” Gamble is one of the judges for this year’s BJP Breakthrough Awards, along with Emma Lewis, assistant curator at Tate Modern, Diana Markosian, photographer at Magnum Photos; Emma Bowkett, director of photography at FT Weekend Magazine; Maisie Skidmore, online editor at AnOther; Juno Calypso, artist; Hayley Louisa Brown, founder and editor of BRICK magazine and Lisa Farrell, head of exhibitions and events at British Journal of Photography. Now in their third edition, there are …

2017-05-05T11:50:07+00:00

Tomasz Laczny on “helping refugees spread their forgotten stories”

Tomasz Laczny’s work is rough and striking – striking enough to have caught the tutors’ eyes at the BJP x Magnum Photos workshop on Storytelling, Collaboration and Advocacy earlier this year. The workshop was a theme close to Laczny’s heart because he’s both shot refugees and helped them depict their own lives, and because his preferred medium is the photobook. His project 40/place which does not exist was shot in a refugee camp in Dakhla, Algeria, and looks at the Saharawi, “exiled people living in the Sahara desert and waiting 40 years to go back home”. The resulting book, which he brought to the workshop, juxtaposes shots showing the harsh reality of daily life in the camps with satellite photos showing their isolated position in the desert, “to highlight the fragile existence of the people suspended in this non-place”. It received an honourable mention at the Dummy Award Kassel 2016. While working on 40/place which does not exist Laczny decided to run a photographic workshop for young people living in the camps, “to help them to spread to the world their forgotten story”. …

2017-04-10T11:42:59+00:00

Book: Julia Fullerton-Batten’s The Act shows the performative side of voluntary sex work

Julia Fullerton-Batten has often trained her camera on women. Her first series was a semi-autobiographical look at the transition from adolescence to womanhood; Unadorned looked at the concept of beauty; Korea at traditionally dressed women in ultra modern cities. Now, “after  a year’s preparation”, she has completed The Act, a study of women who voluntarily undertake sex work in the UK. The project stems from a personal curiosity about what drives these women, some of whom are university educated but risk social stigma and family disapproval to pursue their chosen career. “Although the subject matter was clear in my mind from the outset, having little knowledge of the sex industry I wasn’t at all sure how to go about the project, how to find models, what settings and how to shoot the scenes,” says Fullerton-Batten. She enlisted a casting agent to help and found nearly 100 women prepared to get involved. “A self-professed sex worker defines her profession as consensual and breaks it down into two categories: sex work where direct contact is involved in a private setting, …

2017-04-06T13:51:09+00:00

Photobook: Metropolight by David Gaberle

Five years ago David Gaberle went through “a really rough time” after moving to London. A friend suggested he pick up a camera to help process his experience, and he found that photography “really eases the experience of the sensory overload that comes with living in a big city”. By 2015 he was ready to embark on an ambitious new project inspired by this work, and invested all his savings in travelling to the world’s biggest cities to shoot them. On the move for eight months and changing location every few weeks, he covered over 3600km. “The constant search was the happiest time of my life,” he says. Originally from the Czech Republic, Gaberle studied anthropology back home and has a researcher’s perspective on the modern metropolis. “In the big cities, people spend less time with other people which means they have more time to become different, developing themselves,” he says. “There are more interesting personalities in the cities.” At the same time, though, he finds big cities can be “really dehumanising”, because “they have an effect on how …

2017-05-25T10:46:44+00:00

BJP moves to a creative new hub in London’s East India Dock

Established in 1854, BJP is the world’s longest-running photography magazine, with a longevity built on innovation. We showcase the most important pioneers of photography, but we also keep on top of new trends ourselves, sometimes literally moving with the times to stay at the centre of Britain’s creative scene. Founded in Liverpool, the magazine moved to Covent Garden in 1864; in 2007 we moved to Soho, long at the heart of London’s media industry. In 2013 we settled in Shoreditch, an area then synonymous with art and creative businesses; but the area is changing fast so we’ve now moved again – to the up-and-coming East India Dock. “We are excited to be one of the first creative young businesses to be making the move to East India Dock, at the start of its transformation into a creative London hub,” says Marc Hartog, CEO of BJP‘s publisher Apptitude Media. “This is an exciting new chapter for BJP in the digital and social era and it is important to be in an environment which the team will enjoy and in which the …

2017-04-04T14:22:36+00:00

Breakthrough Awards: Jan McCullough one year later

It was while leafing through a 1950s manual for military wives she’d found in a secondhand shop that photographer Jan McCullough came up with the title for Home Instruction Manual. The innovative project, which explores the concept of the ideal home, scooped the Northern Ireland-based photographer first prize in the Graduate – Series category of last year’s BJP‘s Breakthrough Awards. Renting an empty home for a month, she decorated it according to contemporary DIY advice she found online and photographed the results in a deadpan, deliberately amateurish style. For the Breakthrough group show in East London’s Truman Brewery, McCullough decided to include a huge roll printed with this advice alongside her pictures. Showing her work in this way kickstarted an interest in more experimental exhibition strategies, and McCullough has discovered “an enthusiasm for the possibilities of a physical installation in a gallery context”. “I’m interested in developing this aspect of my practice, considering new ways to present my work specific to its subject,” she continues. “I want to play around with how my installations could …

2017-05-08T15:30:24+00:00

BJP Staff