Posts Tagged ‘stark

26
Aug
12

Mårten Lange : “Anomalies” Series (Photography)

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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“Untitled”
Mårten Lange
Photograph
2009
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“There is an optimal size of things,” Mårten Lange says. Lange believes in the power of the index. When viewed in sequence, his stark, black-and-white photographs of both natural and manmade phenomena resemble a meticulously assembled catalogue of objects whose common quality remains tantalizingly obscure, despite the undeniable sense that they are, somehow, related. Lange’s work underscores photography’s empiricism, its liberation from the subjectivity of other media. In his work, form is stripped of meaning and allowed to stand unadorned, ready for contemplation. Lange explains, “You’ve got this lens, which sees everything, but it understands nothing.” Perhaps his best-known work is Anomalies, his third self-published book. The format of the photos in Anomalies is very strict: all the images are squares (that most static and inert shape) with an object centered in the composition…

Shot in Sweden and Japan, the images in Anomalies are deliberately de-contextualized. Lange notes. “It’s not about a place. If you leave the place out of the story, the images can take on different weights. Places are really loud.” The objects that populate Anomalies, on the other hand, are suffused with a deep, seemingly impenetrable silence. Lange photographed most of the images in Anomalies with a medium format camera equipped with a large Metz flash that he hoped would help combat the inky darkness of the long Swedish winter. It had an even more powerful effect, he recalls. “The whole town became my studio,” he says. In many of the images in Anomalies, the harsh blanket of light effectively cleaves figure from ground, and a scalelessness pervades. An overturned bus, an origami crane, and a distant house could all be the same size, and all resonate with an uncanny strangeness…

Lange’s early interest in photography had more to do with the equipment than the images it could yield. “I was fixated on the machine,” he recalls. As a boy, he visited his grandfather, who had a darkroom in his basement. Lange took photographs of small birds amid the Swedish landscape using his grandfather’s telephoto lens. Traces of those early experiments remain in his current work, which resonates with the power of a focal object emerging from a scanned void. “Complexity resembles chaos,” Lange notes, adding, “Like reverse science, I’m creating the kind of evidence I need to prove my point.” Anomalies has in fact been compared to Mike Mandel and Larry Sultan’s seminal Evidence (1977), which similarly strips the context from the images it indexes. – [Extract : The Last Magazine #8]

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Mårten Lange : Website

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02
May
12

Ben Ali Ong : Photography Series

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‘Black Sun (The Art of Dying)’
Photography Series
Ben Ali Ong
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‘Black Sun (The Art of Dying)’
Photography Series
Ben Ali Ong
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‘Refluent Hours’
Photography Series
Ben Ali Ong
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‘Refluent Hours’
Photography Series
Ben Ali Ong
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‘Black Sun (The Art of Dying)’
Photography Series
Ben Ali Ong
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‘Ballads of the Dead and Dreaming’
Photography Series
Ben Ali Ong
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‘Songs for Sorrow’
Photography Series
Ben Ali Ong
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‘Songs for Sorrow’
Photography Series
Ben Ali Ong
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Throughout my work I have been primarily interested in the suggestive possibilities between the images, and the open narrative I can create by juxtaposing the interior and exterior world beside each other. Portraits next to landscape, for example, and the tension between these two environments. Whilst there are reoccurring motifs and symbols that appear throughout, the importance is on mood, metaphor and emotion, and how different subjects can both carry these feelings and somehow come together, creating my own ambiguous black and white world – similar in a way to the surrealist 1920’s film noir. Birds are frequent symbols that appear throughout the work. Inspired by mythology, they assume a variety of roles. They have been symbols of power and freedom throughout the ages, and are seen to link the human world to the divine. Silhouetted birds in the cloud scape, brooding vistas, faces emerging from darkness, all come together in an attempt to produce an imaginative and mysterious landscape. Early visual influences for me have been Caravaggio and Francis Bacon, beginning with a general attraction to the darker sensibilities of each artists work and it’s sometimes macabre nature. The use of stark, direct lighting and heavy shadows in Caravaggio’s paieces, as well Bacon’s apparent painted ‘blur’ have both made their technical influences. By shooting 35mm black and white film and layering negatives together during the scanning stage, as well as the use of surface scratching and inscriptions to the negative, I try evoke a dream like detachment of an earlier age. BAO

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Ben Ali Ong : Website

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04
Feb
12

Mary Christiansen : ‘Multi Plate Etchings’ (Prints)

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‘Himmerland’
multi-plate etching
107 x 107 cm
2008
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‘Untitled 2’
multi-plate etching
16.5 x 18.5 cm
2008
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‘Shadow line’
multi-plate etching
15.5 x 16.5 cm
2008
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‘Tilt’
multi-plate etching
19.5 x 20 cm
2008
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‘Untitled’
multi-plate etching
18 x 20 cm
2007
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‘Untitled’
multi-plate etching
15.5 x 17 cm
2007
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My pre-occupation as an artist is with creating highly distilled, contemplative nuances of feeling in print. I aim to compose images – drawn from nature and memory – of stark yet tactile forms, held momentarily out of balance; forms disappearing into immaterial shadows and configurations of form in spatial settings, undergoing transformation. I’m fascinated by forms appearing like projections onto surfaces, fragile and immaterial articulations, punctuated by the interplay of light and shade. Re-discovering delicate forms in space at distances defined by rhythm and structure, are of interest to me.

My objective is to create a state of suspension of individual elements, caught in a complex of layers with deceptive simplicity. The creation of these images is intuitive in nature. The creative process is ongoing, with every intuition, reflection and configuration, pre-figuring another possibility. The printing process is an integral part of my working process. The separation and building up of layers, multiple overprinting, the use of inks of differing viscosities – these modifications inform the work as it evolves. The tactile qualities of print-making, the depth and richness of surface, are crucial. – [Artists Statement]

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Mary Christiansen : Hughson Gallery

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21
Jan
12

Jehsong Baak : Photography Series

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“Nothing is more abstract than reality.” –  Giorgio Morandi

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‘Night after Night’ Series
Jehsong Baak
Photograph
1998-2010
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‘Mendes Gans’ Series
Jehsong Baak
Photograph
2008
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‘Mendes Gans’ Series
Jehsong Baak
Photograph
2008
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‘Shelter’ Series
Jehsong Baak
Photograph
1987-1990
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‘La ou Ailleurs’ Series
Jehsong Baak
Photograph
2006
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‘Shelter’ Series
Jehsong Baak
Photograph
1987-1990
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‘Shelter’ Series
Jehsong Baak
Photograph
1987-1990
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Baak freely acknowledges that Robert Frank and Joself Koudelka have served as inspirational mentors in his work. The parallels in the lives of these three photographers are striking as are the basic themes of their work. Yet Baak maintains his own visual language and context that is complex and poignant, creating a personal path so that his work serves as confessions and insights into his persona and life.

The continuity of his photographs and his aesthetic impact are best described as Caravaggesque chiaroscuro. The eerie and surreal prints are of high contrast and a grainy black and white, a result of photographing at night in stark and desolate places. The subjects in these photographs are friends, intimates, and subjects encountered in daily life. Whether the figure is a man or woman, boy or girl, his photographs evoke the feeling of a self-portrait, irrespective of the difference in subject, time or locale.

Baak’s photographs break the stereotype and generalization that photography is a reflection of reality. his photographs reflect his past and present, memories and emotions as if he’s on an endless voyage and his photography is a way to trace his path. While many photographers are engrossed with or attempt to capture too many thoughts and ideas instead of seeing and feeling what subjects are actually at their disposal, it’s refreshing to marvel at his ability to be intuitive and spontaneous. – [Bio]

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Jehsong Baak : Website

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10
Jan
12

Doug Aitken : ‘Altered Earth’ (Arles, City of Moving Images)

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The surreal, cratered salt mines and desolate marshlands of the Camargue region of Southern France are hauntingly navigated in this exclusive excerpt from ALTERED EARTH: Arles, City of Moving Images, a new multimedia production from artist Doug Aitken. The culmination of three years’ work, ALTERED EARTH explores the ever-evolving geography and ecosystem of the Camargue, a boundless wilderness between the tributaries of the Rhone south of Arles. “It’s so remote, a natural place that does not seem to change. But then you start to notice that everything is in flux,” explains Aitken. [Ex : Nowness]

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“The project came out of a casual dinner amongst friends who had connections with the Camargue. They were speaking about this place that has an incredible resonance. It’s very surreal, very stark. There is a rawness and sense of survival that captured my imagination. I had a glass of wine that was on a paper napkin and I noticed drips from the red wine starting to bleed into the pulp of the napkin, just as they were talking about the Rhone River and how it cuts through the wetlands.

I felt like I was holding the geography in my hand almost, this perfect square with a river running through it. I began to fold the napkin as they were speaking into an origami-like shape and realized that what I was actually doing was taking the landscape and dividing it. When you divide something and multiply it, it creates shapes, forms and structure, which eventually creates architecture.

The idea came to me really quickly that it would be interesting to take the geography of Camargue itself and divide it—in so doing creating this set of restrictions, that this region, this space, will be the only space we film in. We’ll look at the different symptoms of this place and move from there; let the landscape, and what you find when exploring and discovering it, create the texture of the narrative.”

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Doug Aitken : Website

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06
Jan
12

William Eckersley : “Dark City” Series (Night Photography)

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Initially inspired by the stillness of London at night, photographer William Eckersley began experimenting in late 2007 and after four years of stunning large format photography, he’s published a book of these works called ‘Dark City’ which promise a compelling view of unseen London. –  view here

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‘Factory, Tree And Moon Behind Silhouette, RM9’
(c-type print / 2010)
“Dark City” Series
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‘Spotlit Steps From Fire Exit, SE1’
(c-type print / 2008)
“Dark City” Series
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‘Trolleys In Car Park, CR0’
(c-type print / 2010)
“Dark City” Series
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‘Bridge Over Canal, E15’
(c-type print / 2009)
“Dark City” Series
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‘Bend In Pedestrian Tunnel, SE1’
(c-type print / 2008)
“Dark City” Series
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‘Shopping Arcade, SE1’
(c-type print / 2008)
“Dark City” Series
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‘Lake And Four Housing Blocks, SE2’
(c-type print / 2010)
“Dark City” Series
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At night, a once flat world illuminated by dull, grey daylight is transformed under the cloak of darkness. Garish spotlighting casts deep shadows and silhouettes, with hues of pink, cyan and orange. The stage is devoid of its human players and seems to showcase the scenery’s forgotten beauty, revealing a stark and otherworldly aesthetic in a city drained of its occupants. The built environment, deliberately contrived to service the needs and desires of humanity, makes sense in the context of teeming human life – without this however, its inherent functionality no longer visible, our urban spaces appeared to stand forlorn, waiting to be judged on their genius or folly, beauty or ugliness… [Extract : Stucco Press]

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William Eckersley : Stucco Press

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Ai : Series : Photography Book

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