All posts filed under: Exhibitions

The Critic, 1943. Image © Weegee/International Center of Photography, courtesy Howard Greenberg Gallery

On show – Weegee’s iconic images of New York’s seamy underbelly

Born near Lemburg in what’s now the Ukraine, Usher Fellig emigrated to the US in 1909 when he was ten. There he acquired a new, Anglicised name, Arthur, and started working as a photographer just three years later. In 1924 he was hired as a darkroom technician by Acme Newspictures (later United Press International Photos), and by 1935 – “spellbound by the mystery of murder”, as he put it – he had left to become a freelance news photographer. Centring his work around Manhattan’s police headquarters, his seemingly uncanny ability to get to crime scenes early earned him another new name – Weegee, inspired by the Ouija board (though another account traces it to his time as a darkroom “squeegee” boy). His talent for prescience was actually down to a portable police-band shortwave radio, which he got permission to run in 1938 – the only New York reporter to do so. Adding a complete darkroom in the boot of his car, Weegee was able to get his sensational images to newspapers such as the Herald-Tribune, Daily News, Post, The Sun, and PM Weekly long before anyone else. …

2017-02-23T12:57:39+00:00

Image © Maisie Cousins

Francesca Allen and Maisie Cousins celebrate strong women

“In a society that profits from your self-doubt, liking yourself is a rebellious act,” say photographers Francesca Allen and Maisie Cousins, the photographers behind KKOutlet’s first joint show I Feel Sick/Hot Flush. Allen, who’s a regular for publications such as Riposte, Noisey and The Fader, has taken one room and is showing portraits of “powerful, fearless women at the height of their sexual freedom”. Cousins, who featured in the Creative Review Photography Annual and Vogue Photo Festival last year, has devoted the second space to darkly humorous collages. “They’re taking what has traditionally been a male gaze and making it into something of their own,” runs the gallery press release. “However, they’re not just rehashing pseudo feminist versions of bygone erotic photographs; there’s flesh and sexuality, but their images are more than that. There’s a huge sense of fun, rebelliousness and unashamed hedonism.” The exhibition is open until 27 February at KKOutlet – London’s very own KesselsKramer outpost, which also features a well-stocked bookshop. www.kkoutlet.com www.maisiecousins.com www.francesca-allen.co.uk  

2017-02-22T16:30:24+00:00

Tooting, London, 1975. From the series Family Units © Edward Barber

Obituary: Edward Barber 1949-2017

It’s a terrible shock and great sadness to be writing about Ed in the past tense. He was a great friend of mine for nearly 40 years, a man who believed passionately in the power of photography to show how people live, how they protest against the powerful and how people create things that counteract the corporate machine. We worked together on many projects for the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) and at the Half Moon Gallery and its magazine Camerawork. Ed was one of the original members of the collective at the Half Moon in Alie Street, Whitechapel, with fellow photographers Jenny Matthews, Mike Goldwater and Paul Trevor. This was to prove to be incredibly dynamic and brilliant group who curated numerous influential photographic exhibitions, many of which were by photographers who have continued to produce important work, as they have themselves. Ed had the idea of laminating the exhibitions, at first because the roof leaked in Alie Street and plastic lamination made them waterproof. He began touring the laminated exhibitions, sending them by …

2017-02-21T17:09:29+00:00

From the series Talcum © Seba Kurtis, courtesy Christophe Guye Galerie

Seba Kurtis’ new work on migrants goes on show

It was discarded by the side of the road in Austria – a poultry lorry seeping human decay. When the authorities entered in August 2015, they found 71 bodies collapsed in a heap of necrosis, among them children, one a baby. All had died of asphyxiation. Beyond the horror, the discovery pointed to a complex global network of traffickers and asylum seekers. Some of the dead were confirmed as Syrian; others were harder to identify. The owner of the lorry, which had set off from Budapest, was a Bulgarian of Lebanese origin. Shortly after, the Hungarian police detained three East Europeans and an Afghan, all likely “low-ranking members of a Bulgarian- Hungarian human-trafficking gang”. A week later, a photo of three-year-old Alan Kurdi’s body washed up on a beach near Bodrum, went viral, putting an innocent human face on the migration crisis in Europe, which by now had become a deeply divisive political issue. The lorry in Austria was different. The victims remained invisible. The descriptions of the discovery forced you to make your own …

2017-02-20T13:14:43+00:00

From the series A Smiling Man A Hidden Snake © Yurian Quintanas Nobel

An uneasy vision of Sri Lanka in A Smiling Man and a Hidden Snake

Before Yurian Quintanas Nobel went on holiday to Sri Lanka, friends told him how welcoming the people there are. “And they really are,” he says, “but I always felt there was a kind of darkness in this country. “The recent history of Sri Lanka is very painful in human terms,” he explains. “The country suffered a long civil war that finished only eight years ago, and they had a devastating tsunami in 2004. I remember one afternoon I was taking pictures of a ruined house when a man came out to say hello. We talked for a while and then he told me that his wife and his child had died in the tsunami, and he pointed next to us where they were buried. “These kinds of situations shocked me, and influenced me more than other things like the hospitality of the people and the beauty of the country. What I had in mind while taking pictures was that not everything is what it seems. Sometimes things are not as beautiful as you thought and sometimes, …

2017-02-16T14:01:11+00:00

Installation shot of Incoming by Richard Mosse in collaboration with Trevor Tweeten and Ben Frost at The Curve, Barbican. Image © Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Barbican Art Gallery

Richard Mosse – Incoming

“A camera is a sublimation of the gun,” Susan Sontag wrote in her seminal collection of essays On Photography, first published in 1977. “To photograph someone is a subliminal murder – a soft murder, appropriate to a sad, frightened time.” But for Richard Mosse’s latest work, Incoming, his camera wasn’t a sublimation – it was the weapon itself. The Irishman’s rise has been vertiginous. Graduating from an MRes in cultural studies in 2003, a decade later he was representing his home country at the Venice Biennale, by way of a postgraduate course in fine art at Goldsmiths, an MFA in photography at Yale University and dozens of solo and group exhibitions in between. In 2015, the Irish photographer was nominated for membership of Magnum Photos – he was to be one of the youngest members of the prestigious agency, invited on the back of one extraordinary photography series, his Congo-based Infra work, which had won the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize a year earlier. But, even as he was welcomed in by Magnum, Mosse privately harboured an increasing sense …

2017-02-22T11:48:48+00:00

Turkan 2010 © Wolfgang Tillmans. On show at Wolfgang Tillmans: 2017 at Tate Modern 15 February - 11 June

Wolfgang Tillmans: 2017 opens at London’s Tate Modern

“He’s not a prophet, but he sees where things might go because he has an eye for the world,” said Chris Dercon, director of the Volksbuhne Berlin and co-curator of Tate Modern’s Wolfgang Tillmans: 2017 show at its press view this morning. A huge 14-room exhibition it bears out Dercon’s words with installations such as the ironically titled truth study centre, a collection of newspaper and magazine clippings, objects, drawings and images, that reflect on media representation of facts and our propensity to believe what we want despite them; also on show are Tillmans’ pro-Remain posters from the recent British referendum on EU membership. A close-up shot of a car headlight shot in 2012 is accompanied by the thought (in the exhibition booklet) that headlights are more angular now, “giving them a predatory appearance that might reflect a more competitive climate”; shots taken in nightclubs are interpreted in terms of the freedom might experience in such places. Other images show apples, celebrities, static interference; a specially-designed room, The Playback Room, is devoted to sharing recorded music on state-of-the-art equipment. The subject matter varies but …

2017-02-14T19:16:04+00:00

A young boy playing with a "pipa" (kite) on the roof of an unfinished condo. It is one of six buildings originally constructed for the middle class about 30 years ago; the mega project stopped after the construction company hit a financial crisis, and squatting started soon after. From the series Copacabana Palace © Peter Bauza

Peter Bauza’s Copacabana Palace wins at World Press Photo

Copacabana Palace is a complex of six concrete shells in Rio de Janeiro’s Campo Grande neighbourhood – buildings left unfinished 30 years ago after an economic crash stalled a housing project. The name comes from the eponymous five star hotel that looks over Rio’s Copacabana Beach, but the complex is also known as “Jambalaya”, the title of a Brazilian TV show, and “Carandiru”, the Sao Paulo prison where more than 100 inmates were massacred by police in 1992. When they were first abandoned, the Copacabana Palace buildings were looted and gutted of pipes, wires and electric cables. The hall floors have collapsed in many places. One building is completely uninhabitable, but the other five house about 300 families, some of whom have been squatting there for decades. German-born photographer Peter Bauza started taking pictures of them in June 2015, often sleeping in their homes. “When I appeared, they were just surprised to see a gringo there,” says Bauza. “I told them that I had an idea, that I would like to document their daily lives – their …

2017-02-14T14:09:10+00:00

D is for Deconstruct. Photos are often reliable documents that show things as they truly are. But just as you cut and paste with paper, scissors and glue, so too can you deconstruct and rebuild a photo – snipping, clipping and nipping as you please. Image from the series “I want to be...”, 2014, Kid’s Wear magazine, vol. 40 © Achim Lippoth, taken from the book ABC Photography

Making photography as easy as ABC

ABC Photography, a children’s guide to photography featuring images by Martin Parr, Wolfgang Tillmans, Nan Goldin, Alec Soth, Sebastiao Salgado and many more, opens at the V&A Museum of Childhood this weekend. Inspired by the recent book edited by Jan von Holleben – who also shoots children’s books himself – the project takes one photographic concept per letter to explain ideas such as deconstruction, composition, exposure and perspective. The text, by Monte Packham, is child-friendly and witty, and draws on the images to make a satisfyingly holistic whole. An exhibition by Tom Hunter called Searching for Ghosts also opens at the V&A Museum of Childhood this weekend, featuring work made with children living on the Boundary Estate. ABC Photography is free, and is open until 11 June in London’s V&A Museum of Childhood. ABC Photography, ed Jan van Holleben, is published by Tarzipan Books. Searching for Ghosts by Tom Hunter is open until 21 January 2018.

2017-02-09T13:54:22+00:00

From the series Manhattan Sunday © Richard Renaldi

Richard Renaldi reflects on shooting Manhattan Sunday

It’s Saturday night, and darkness has spilled across the city, transforming Manhattan’s sidewalks into a catwalk of bacchanalia, spotlighted by street lamps and neon piping. Clusters of sinewy figures in tank tops lean on metal railings outside favourite haunts such as Studio 54 or Paradise Garage, hips cocked, smoking cigarettes. A wall painting of a large, fleshy tentacle reaching out of a rolling wave frames a set of black doors with signs indicating ‘General Admission’ and ‘VIP Only’. Stepping into a hidden world, you head downstairs and join a steadily expanding crowd of bodies swaying to tribal house beats, swirling in artificial mist and the odour of hormone-spiked sweat laced with chemical stimulants. Faces blur. Everything begins to lose focus. It’s just past midnight when we join photographer Richard Renaldi’s journey through the night. The timestamp [00.07] captions the first image – a shiny, half-full dance floor – in his new photobook, Manhattan Sunday, published by Aperture. Shot over five years, the book delineates a night out on New York’s gay clubbing scene, celebrating its …

2017-02-16T13:39:12+00:00

BJP Staff