Yan Wang Preston’s Mother River is both a physical odyssey through China and a metaphor for its evolution, travelling from the traditional culture still seen to be seen at its source through to the rampant modernisation approaching its mouth. “Modernisation is reaching everywhere in China, although in Tibet the degree of modernisation is not the same as in Shanghai,” Wang Preston tells BJP. “I wanted my pictures to document this gradual change along the river’s journey.” Born in China, Wang Preston originally studied Clinical Medicine in Shanghai – a family choice which she had never felt passionate about, she says. She worked as an anaesthetist for three years after graduating, but eventually quit took a break to go rock climbing. “During this process, I met a British climber and ended up marrying him,” she says. “I knew that I’d come to live in the UK at some point.” Making the move in 2005, she found that “the prospect of living a new life in a new country presented itself as an opportunity to choose my own destiny”. A keen …
This year’s edition of the biennial photography festival Format foregrounds work that describes the world around us at a specific moment in history. Habitat is a broad and yet provocative theme, one that is designed to interrogate not only our physical surroundings such as land, sea, plants, other humans and wildlife, but a range of less tangible and often more visually evasive things – the digital and political worlds, for example, or mass migration – which nevertheless have considerable repercussions on our lives. “I wanted to offer up experiences concerning the complexity of our existence on the planet,” says festival director Louise Clements, interviewed for the March 2017 issue of BJP. “Climate, migration, technology: they all seem to be accelerating and the consequences are quite momentous. We are impacting the geology of Earth. It was important to me to do something vital. As a festival, we’re not just here to celebrate the achievements of the artists; we also want to have some kind of impact.” Work by more than 300 artists and photographers will be …
The artist is showing new work at the Roman Road gallery, in an exhibition called TYO2-LDN4, which gathers together images made in the last year in London and Tokyo, always at night. Cairns started the original LDN project in London in 2008, and exhibited the work at Les Rencontres d’Arles in 2013; he went on to publish an ebook, LDN EI, which used hacked Kindle e-readers to present deliberately damaged analogue prints in electronic ink. In 2015, Cairns was awarded the prestigious Hariban award, which allowed him to learn about the collotype printing process at the Benrido Collotype Atelier in Kyoto. In this exhibition he’s showing his LDN4 Collotype Glass Plates, plus the same images printed on Japanese Gampi paper. He is also showing photographs from Tokyo petrified on Kindle screens removed from the original reader. The exhibition is open until 22 April 2017; a retrospective of his work in London, Tokyo, Osaka, Los Angeles and Las Vegas, which includes a text by Tate Modern’s Simon Baker, will be published this year by Morel Books. www.antony-cairns.co.uk www.romanroad.com
The director of the Musee des beaux-arts, le Locle shares what made this year for her – and what she’s looking forward to
Shot on the salt pans of Botswana and reworked in the dark room, Chloe Sell’s latest series is a meditation on the cyclical nature of life
Marking the twenty-year anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to Chinese sovereignty from British rule, a new exhibition at Impressions Gallery explores the entwined histories of China and the UK, traced through the family history of photographer Kurt Tong.
In January and February 1991, as the United States–led coalition drove Iraqi forces out of Kuwait, Saddam Hussein’s troops retaliated with an inferno. As the desperate efforts to contain and extinguish the conflagration progressed, Sebastião Salgado traveled to Kuwait to witness the crisis firsthand.
When was the first time you became aware of photography? How old were you? One of my favourite books as a child was a photographic book on Iceland that I found on the street with my Mum. It contained so many wonderful film spreads of Iceland (mostly aerial shots, and a lot of sheep farming). I am deeply attached to the book and take it wherever I go. I always vowed to go to Iceland as soon as it was possible. I went, last month, and finally got to take pictures of my own. One day I would like to see it in a helicopter, if I keep down my carbon footprint for a bit. How did you learn to become a photographer? I was taught how to use a darkroom by a few people at various stages during my childhood. I have barely any technical knowledge yet. I’m working on that. I started off working with an SLR, so learned the basics, but then went to digital for several years before returning to film. …
A little-known series of photographs of the state of Nevada, shot in the year 1977 by the late American landscape and architectural photographer Lewis Baltz, is about to go on show for the first time.
During pilgrimages to his native Hale County, Alabama, William Christenberry has recorded the changing appearance of the region’s natural landscape and vernacular architecture in diverse formats and media since the early 1960s. The work is shown for the first time at New York’s Pace/MacGill Gallery, in an about to launch exhibition.