"Vera & John" is a collection of photographs that Jason Wilde made from notes that his mum, Vera, left for his Dad, John. Without Vera's knowledge, John and Jason saved more than 90 notes between 2005 and 2014. Jason then set about making more than 4000 photos of paving stones on specific streets in Camden, north London, where they and five generations of Jason's family have lived, using those images as the background for his photographs of the notes. Simply brilliant, fascinating, and fun.

View the full screen magazine photo feature - These are but a few of the insights into the life of Vera & John. See more: Jason has launched a Kickstarter campaign to turn this into a book. Enjoy the video promo, and drop a bit of cash - the pound is so weak you can get a book for $26! Contribute here.

"The idea of making a project about my mum and dad came to me while visiting their home in 2005. With no one home I had a rummage through the fridge and food cupboards before making a nice cup of tea. Leaning against the wall next to the kettle was a note. I had been collecting notes since 2003 for a different project (called 'Silly Arse Broke It') and realised that this single note outlining that evenings dinner arrangements was a potential project."

See "Silly Arse" here in aCurator Magazine.


 "Change" is a series of photographs of American quarter-dollars that Ralf Graebner found on the streets of New York City, intrigued by "the metamorphosis of these quarters from looking identical when they were minted to looking distinctly unique after they had been exposed to various harsh environments over time." 

View the full screen magazine photo feature then come back and learn how he does it!

He creates these graphic depictions by combining thousands of thin image slices made with a macro lens to produce a "three-dimensionally stitched image." Hard to reckon so here's the full monty on his method:
"I am using a technique called "focus stacking" to overcome two limitations of conventional photography, namely, extremely limited depth of field in macro photography at open aperture, and loss of detail through diffraction when the aperture is stopped down.
In other words, in conventional single-shot macro photography you either have to accept shallow depth of field but good detail where in focus, or more depth of field but overall soft images due to the detail-robbing effects of diffraction when you close the aperture.
What I do instead is take pictures with extreme shallow depth of field (around 1/100 of a millimeter!) but with the highest image quality where the image is in focus, and between each exposure I move the camera in increments of 1/100mm towards the subject. In order to capture a subject that requires 1 millimeter of depth of field with this technique I need to make 100 exposures. These 100 shots are then analyzed by a software that determines what's in focus and what's not, and merges everything into one image with complete depth of field, discarding what's out of focus."
Phew! Not enough for you?
"I repeat this process 30-40 times, photographing small sections of the coin, until all of the subject is captured. These 30-40 focus-stacked images are then stitched together to become the final image. With this technique I capture so much detail that I could create 10' x 10' prints that are tack-sharp. The limitations are merely the maximum width of chromogenic paper available, as well as portability of the prints: more than 7 feet, and I would run into problems getting the prints through regular-sized door frames."
See some that did make it through the door, at Fuchs Projects, 56 Bogart Street, Brooklyn, NY 11206 during Bushwick Open Studios, September 30 to October 2, 2016. 

Did you know? A quarter costs 11 cents to produce. 

 Cherry Lips © Pacifico Silano

 Contributing editor to this blog Efrem Zelony-Mindell is not only a great writer, and artist, he is also a great curator. Never doing anything by half, Efrem put together a fascinating group show that is running now through September 23, 2016 at the Rubber Factory down on New York's lower east side - 29 Ludlow to be precise.

Untitled © Izaac Encisco

I credit Efrem for keeping me on my toes and making sure I don't get too comfy in my taste. There is such a variety of works here that the show feels huge but is in fact small and easily consumable. You can read a proper sensible interview on Humble Arts between Efrem and Stephen Frailey, head of SVA's photography program and founder of Dear Dave magazine, which is concurrently featuring the images from this show. 

Marital Troubles © Ilana Savdie

The full list of exhibited artists is: Thomas Albdorf, Ellen Carey, Alli Coates, Joy Drury Cox, Dillon Dewaters, Izaac Enciso, Aaron Hegert, Nico Krijno, Namsa Leuba, Ryan Oskin, Signe Pierce, Ilana Savdie, Pacifico Silano, and Quinn Torrens.

Untitled II, from the series "The African Queens" © Namsa Leuba


Mickey Aloisio may have the best tactic to banish the dilemma of how to make a nude subject instantly comfortable for the camera. "I'll get naked too, that's fine." He tells me it happens just like that. Everything's ok if you're naked together. Aloisio's body of work Gay Wildlife makes you comfortable. His passion for his community and his peers is instantly read in the photographs. There's something individual and unique about each subjects gaze into the camera. Aloisio and his subjects talk the entire time they're shooting; they share roles of dominance and submissiveness. That performance isn't one that happens in the photos, but there is something matter of fact and bare that results in the images from those interactions.

© Mickey Aloisio

"I love photographing the bear community because bears have this confidence about them. Maybe it's taken them a long time to achieve, but they understand the beauty of their bodies." The men in Aloisio's images give him something, but they are also able to take something from him. So do we as viewers. These photographs establish a connection and allow for the ability to be a part of a very significant and established history of camaraderie among certain types of men. The photos aren't just of naked men; they're about people. The men in Aloisio's images are more bare than naked, they tell us something about themselves. The playfulness of his imagery and the subject overcomes a very human feeling - nervousness.

© Mickey Aloisio

Sometimes it's incredibly difficult to be comfortable in your own skin and know who you are. Gay Wildlife is Aloisio's way of talking to these men who captivate him and finding out who they are, who he is, and what his community of peers is all about. These men come from all walks of life, and by photographing them in their private spaces their personalities shine through. The work is a collaboration. It'd be too easy to say these images are pornographic, position and environments are sexual, our bodies are simply the form of who we are. Just because we don't know these men doesn't make these photos voyeuristic. A huge part of any great portrait is not knowing who's in the picture. Aloisio just wants to allow these men a platform and voice to be heard, they are beautiful.

© Mickey Aloisio

© Mickey Aloisio

© Mickey Aloisio

© Mickey Aloisio

© Mickey Aloisio

© Mickey Aloisio

© J A Mortram

 Through his ongoing commitment to Small Town Inertia, Jim Mortram is dedicated to showing what life is like for people living in the margins of society. Basing his experiences solely around the area in which he lives, we see how the system is failing his neighbours and by extension the disadvantaged across the UK.

"Witnessing Tilney1's battle with Paranoid Schizophrenia over the course of the past 12 months, his medication changes, his endurance in isolation, his fight to exist and to navigate existence with and often without the regular support and contact with professional care teams, has been both terrifying and illuminating."

"It was as though watching a man drowning beneath the ice. I see him hitching for breath, chest heaving, eyes wild, fingers whipping at the indifferent, almost invisible, wall above.
I can do nothing but witness." J A Mortram, 2016

Film about Jim by Neale James
"This short film documentary introduces one of photography's more altruistic photographers and the people for whom his pictures have made real life impact."


Being on the receiving end of all sorts of submissions each day is a privilege I do not take for granted. Blaise Djilo is a photographer in the Cameroon who sent over an email upon discovering aCurator. Here is a small sample of his photographs of the everyday. You should also check out his photographs of Japanese dance Butoh performed in Africa.




© Leland Bobbé

Marvelous news in from Leland Bobbé that 18 of his photographs from 1970s New York City have been acquired by the savvy curators and collectors at the Museum of the City of New York. Congratulations and well deserved.


All images © Leland Bobbé

© Filip Wolak Courtesy MCNY

Our pals at the Museum of the City of New York and El Museo del Barrio announce this year's line up for their outdoor Wednesday parties celebrating summer and uptown NYC! Don't miss the tribute to Prince!

Wednesday, August 3
 The Museum of the City of New York | A Tribute to Prince
- Joey Carvello and DJ Woof spinning the Purple One's grooves
- Carlos Neto teaching street jazz dance moves

El Museo del Barrio | Bling it On
- DJ Oscar Nñ spins a blend of urban and virtual club sounds with latinx undertones
- Design your own fashion accessories
- Curator led tour of ANTONIO LOPEZ: Future Funk Fashion

© Filip Wolak Courtesy MCNY

Wednesday, August 10
The Museum of the City of New York | NYC's Greatest Hits
- Misbehaviour of Mobile Mondays! spins the Big Apple's most memorable songs
- Karen NG's dance troupe performs with trumpeter Omar Akil Little
- Book launch of Alan Bortman's Uptown & Downtown: Old Skool Paintings on NYC Subway Maps with an all-star crew of graffiti writers - get your copy signed!
El Museo del Barrio | Sew What
- DJ Riobamba returns with Digital Diaspora tunes!
- Weave your own textile using synthetic materials
- Live fashion illustrations by Steven Broadway and friends
Wednesday, August 17 | THE FINALE
The Museum of the City of New York | 80'S Dance Party
- Misbehaviour & DJ Boogie Blind of Mobile Mondays! spin Hip-Hop, Pop, and New Wave!
- Uko Snowbunny teaches Hip-Hop dance
El Museo del Barrio | Revista Fashionista
- DJ Oscar Nñ closes out Uptown Bounce
- Create your own fashion zine
- Curator led tour of ANTONIO LOPEZ: Future Funk Fashion

© Filip Wolak Courtesy MCNY

© Jamel Shabazz from "Back in the Days" coloring book, published by powerHouse Books

The press release tells you all you need to know about this brilliant new publication (August, 2016, powerHouse Books). If you aren't familiar with the wonderful archive of Jamel Shabazz, get busy. This book is a real treat, and affordable enough to get one for everyone on your holiday list. It's fun for ages 1 - 100! I asked the publicist for enough to fill mine but she not unreasonably sent me only one. 


"Straight from the old-school streets of NYC at the dawn of the hip-hop scene comes Back in the Days Coloring Book. Here is your chance to redraw the birth of old-school hip-hop fashion: hangin' in Harlem, kickin' it in Queens, and cold chillin' in Brooklyn. Based on the legendary and original street-style book, Back in the Days by Jamel Shabazz."


"Style with an attitude not seen in fashion for another 20 years to come, Shabazz's subjects strike poses that put supermodels to shame--showing off Kangol caps and Cazal glasses, shell-top Adidas and suede Pumas with fat laces, shearling coats and leather jackets, gold dookie chains, door-knocker earrings, name belts, boom boxes, and other 80s designer finery. Featuring 30 original drawings, now it's your turn to get in on the action. Pull out your Crayolas and markers and help everyone look their best by adding your own vibrant colors to these fly outfits."

What a brilliant and accessible way to keep your images out there!




All images © Jamel Shabazz from "Back in the Days" coloring book, published by powerHouse Books

Forrest Mars Jr. 1985 © Yousuf Karsh

Forrest Mars Jr. of Mars, as in Mars Bars, has died aged 84. Mars Jr. and his siblings maintained chocolate independence, so Mars is not owned by a petrochemical company. How refreshing.

I wish I were a "chocolate billionaire". Is it too late?

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