All posts filed under: New Talent

Image © Ren Hang, courtesy Stieglitz 19 gallery

An interview with Ren Hang

BJP

“I do not think nudity is challenging – nudity is common, everybody has it,” says Ren Hang. “I like people naked and I like sex; I use nudity so that I can feel more realism and sense of presence.” But whatever his view, his work has proved controversial in his native China, where galleries have found it difficult to show his images and “no Chinese fashion magazines let me make images”. Even so, he’s exhibited in China, Italy, France, Russia, Israel and Sweden, published his work in magazines around the world, and published several books, with organisations such as the respected Editions Bessard. “Ren Hang’s images challenge conventional codes of morality in a still highly conservative society,” states another of his publishers, Editions du Lic. “[…]The artist’s homeland remains harshly censorial against any material it deems immoral and Hang’s work certainly plays with fire.” Editions du Lic claims Hang is part of a new breed of 21st century Chinese artists, “riding the wave of modernisation and cultural reawakening in China”; Hang sees things more simply, …

2017-02-27T16:01:52+00:00

From the series Farang © Francesco Merlini

Ones to Watch: Francesco Merlini

BJP

“I was 13, standing on the balcony at home holding the first digital camera my family had ever owned. I was staring into the viewfinder trying to frame a flower, my eyes wide at its reproduction on the small screen,” says 30-year-old Francesco Merlini of the first picture he ever took. “I was struck by the immediacy of the photographic medium, the ease with which you can create something visually pleasing.” Merlini studied industrial design at Politecnico di Milano, and though photography featured in his life from an early age, he never considered dedicating himself to it. Like many of his generation, he used his camera for little more than documenting his life – his mates, girlfriends, trips. “Some photos worked but there was no meaning behind them, there was no purpose,” he says. “They were snaps. “The turning point came in 2010 when I started working at Prospekt [the agency of which he is now a member] as a photo editor and sales manager. I started doing scans and photographing events, developing my own …

2017-02-27T15:02:00+00:00

sophieiceland4

Sophie le Roux’s dreamlike Icelandic landscapes

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. …

2016-11-21T19:25:08+00:00

From My Winter Holiday in Beijing © Cedric Van Turtlebloom

My Winter Holiday in Beijing

Cedric Van Turtlebloom’s contemporary documentary style centres around everyday life – but not as we know it. Currently editing his second photobook, in which he takes a quizzical look at China’s burgeoning middle class and its penchant for artificial ski slopes, his visual stories are anything but conventional.

2016-09-09T22:51:30+00:00

From the series Mimasu © Karim Skalli

Mimasu: a visual diary of observations

Karim Skalli understood as a child, when visiting his family in Casablanca, that light is not merely a source of illumination – it’s sensorial, evoking a mood or a feeling when it beams through crevices in curtains and on to objects in the home. One of six children, his mother and father would pile them all into a big red van and travel across continents – through England, France and Spain – to reach Casablanca, the birthplace of his father. “We couldn’t afford to fly because there were just too many of us, so my father would drive: it would take days. There wasn’t much to do on those trips, so I used to stare out the window, looking at all the different landscapes, the different cities, the different people. I was captivated by the soft tones the sun cast as it set. Those trips were my window into the world beyond – almost literally,” says Skalli. Light shapes our relationship with both interior and exterior spaces; for example, it plays a significant role in …

2016-08-09T15:10:25+00:00

BJP Staff