Author: Tom Seymour

Susan Meiselas on shooting Carnival Strippers

“It’s getting near show time!” the voice would boom out over the cheers of the punters. Susan Meiselas would hover at first near the back of the tent. “Don’t be shy, take your hands out of your pockets, take your money out of your wallets. Rest your elbows on the stage and look up into the whole, the whole goddamn show. Show time! Where they strip to please, not to tease!” Susan Meiselas was 24 when she started Carnival Strippers. It was the summer of 1972, and her photography experience was limited to portraits of her housemates in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She had just completed an MA from Harvard, yet she still was shy and unsure of herself – very unlike the direct intellect of today, who treats Magnum’s offices like second homes.

2018-01-22T10:52:31+00:00

Peter Mitchell on A New Refutation of the Viking 4 Space Mission

For more than 40 years, Peter Mitchell has been quietly making photographs of his surrounding environment in the north of England. He’s done so with the minimum of fuss, without any fanfare or desire for the public eye. Now he’s finally been awarded his first major survey show, A New Refutation of the Viking 4 Space Mission, opening a week before the closing of his exhibition at Rencontres d’Arles. A recluse he may be, but Mitchell is also extremely influential. “It’s a mystery to me,” he says with a shrug, when I ask him how he’s achieved such a feat. “But there you go.”

2018-01-09T09:09:10+00:00

Q&A: Mimi Mollica on the impact of the Sicilian Cosa Nostra

Tormented by a traumatic past and challenged by a difficult present, Sicily is still haunted by the destructive presence of Cosa Nostra. In Terra Nostra, Mimi Mollica shows this problematic entanglement, focusing on the legacy of the Mafia in Sicily. Born and raised in Palermo, Mollica says the series was a labour of love on his homeland, and he tells BJP how he created it, and how he got into photography in the first place.

2017-12-05T10:48:23+00:00

Hilla Becher on making art and a life with Bernd

One of the dominant influences in contemporary European photography is wheeled into the restaurant at the NRW Forum, a grand art gallery a stone’s throw from the Rhine. It’s the height of the Düsseldorf Photo Weekend, and people of all ages are passing through the galleries on either side of us. Many of them won’t realise it, but most of the photography here is deeply indebted to this slight and unassuming woman, born in East Germany before the war, and now happily talking over pasta and wine in the café. She has now been without Bernd, her husband, for more than seven years, after he died from complications during heart surgery. That straight bob of blonde hair is greying. She is now 81, and sits slightly stooped in her wheelchair. You have to strain to hear what she says, yet she recounts her life with a remarkable wit and poise. Some people start to switch off at this age; Hilla Becher, it seems, could not be more connected to her surroundings. She met her husband in …

2018-01-09T09:32:08+00:00

From the BJP archives: Jason Evans on Jamie Hawkesworth

“I admit didn’t really get the fuss about Hawkesworth when he first started to make ripples in 2010 with his portraits shot in Preston Bus Station (a centrepiece of Brutalist architecture set for demolition ahead of a successful campaign to have it saved and listed), and his signing to Julie Brown’s M.A.P agency, but I have been won over by the ongoing developments in his work,” wrote Jason Evans for BJP in 2015; two years later and the institutions are also catching on, as Hawkesworth’s forthcoming solo show at the Huis Marseille in Amsterdam shows

2017-08-02T15:12:23+00:00

Ones to Watch: Rose Marie Cromwell

Rose Marie Cromwell went beyond the cliches to build an expressionistic homage to the Cuba she knows and loves. “I wanted to make images that investigated my complicated relationship to this specific place, rather than trying to document something ‘about’ Cuba,” she says.

2017-06-15T13:08:57+00:00

Washington Post’s Age of Walls wins WPP’s Innovative Storytelling Prize

Donald Trump’s Mexican wall may have got the headlines over the last year, but walls – in a very physical sense – are being built between nations all over the world, at a pace and urgency under-reported by the world’s most viable media organisations. “In many ways, the barrier-building is being driven by fear,“ The Washington Post wrote in the introduction to New Age of Walls, a multimedia investigation detailing each of the 63 border walls and barriers, many of them newly constructed, that are now dividing nations across four continents. New Age of Walls was the winner of the Innovative Storytelling category in World Press Photo’s Digital Storytelling contest, an award for a piece of journalism designed specifically for the online space. “Most of the new walls are being erected within the European Union, which until recently was nearly borderless,” The Post wrote. “Britain is going further, rolling up its bridges to the continent by voting to exit the E.U. “Intended to counter migrants and terrorist attacks, these moves are not limited to Europe. In the Middle …

2017-02-16T13:02:33+00:00

BJP Staff