Hanna Moon was born in South Korea, Joyce Ng “spent her youth in the multitude of sprawling malls throughout the city of formerly-colonised Hong Kong”; both are now based in London, where they’re fast making their mark in fashion photography. They’ve joined forces for an exhibition at London’s Somerset House titled Hanna Moon & Joyce Ng: English as a Second Language, which explores their take on Western conceptions of beauty.
The exhibition includes new work commissioned by Somerset House as well as images from the photographers’ archives: Moon opted to shoot two of her favourite models – Heejin, from South Korea, and Moffy, from London, in Somerset House’s handsome Neoclassical buildings; Ng, who prefers to street-cast, chose to make images with people who work in, or were visiting, Somerset House. Also shot at Somerset House, Ng’s images were inspired by the 16th century Chinese novel Journey to the West.
Fashion photography is changing – as Holly Hay and Shonagh Marshall, co-curators of a new three-part project entitled Posturing: Photographing the Body in Fashion, will attest. In November 2017, the pair held a London exhibition which placed 42 framed photographs and six magazine shoots in a west London space. It called into question both the function of this branch of contemporary image-making and the changing role of the figure in fashion imagery, placing work by Johnny Dufort, Marton Perlaki, Charlie Engman, Brianna Capozzi and others side by side. The show was followed by a specially commissioned film by artist Coco Capitán, Learning to Transcend the Physical Barrier That Owning a Body Implies, examining the respective practices of a choreographer, an artist and the founder of a traditional film-based darkroom, interrogating physical selfhood in all of its guises. This month, they launch the third part – a book created with Self Publish, Be Happy, in which photographers, stylists, editors and set designers respond to ideas about the body in fashion.
“Throughout human history the depiction of the human body has been curiously investigated,” writes BJP‘s assistant editor, Izabela Radwanska Zhang. “In its rawest form, artists have dedicated their lives to perfecting it on paper – god and icons of religion and spirituality rendered in perfect anatomy. This changed with the arrival of the camera, and gradually our viewpoints of the figure became manifold.” We contemplate some of these viewpoints in this issue, which looks at the depiction of the human form and the ways in which contemporary image-makers are pushing its representation. From Amsterdam, we have Carla van de Puttelaar and her compelling work on the female nude, which takes inspiration from the Old Masters. Photographing female figures of the art world, Van de Puttelaar creates portraits that are both elegant and empowering in her ongoing project Artfully Dressed: Women in the Art World. Elsewhere, we feature a new three-part project by co-curators Holly Hay and Shonagh Marshall titled Posturing: Photographing the Body in Fashion, which explores the changing representation of the body in the ever-morphing fashion world. “It’s about …
Casting from the street and creating near-future looks, South African photographer Kristin Lee Moolman is creating “a new African mythology”, say her fans, which has already featured in an exhibition at Somerset House, and in fashion magazines such as Vogue