"Few things in this world make sense to me. Photography, and the lyrics of a man who sounds like a muppet crooning, happen to be two exceptions. I am attracted to people who find a way to manifest their obsessive qualities into something physical. 'Carnivores and Destructors'* documents people infatuated with the pop singer Morrissey and the various dimensions of this fixation.
Enjoying a band is an abstract idea - the individuals I chose to photograph translate this into something beyond just music and integrate these concepts into a tangible experience and way of life. Somewhere in this self imposed isolation, comfort and safety are found, and that is what fascinates me." - Adam Krause
It isn't every day that a submission speaks to me in the way Adam Krause
's did. We share a huge love of Morrissey, and with these great photographs this was an obvious feature for aCurator.
, photographer of the 'Developer Tray
' series, invited me to the SVA
gallery in New York's gorgeous Starrett-Lehigh building in Chelsea to view the Photo, Video and Related Media graduates' theses. Cyr's prints look as stunning on paper as in my magazine!
Among a lot of interesting work (surprisingly, plenty shot on chrome and neg as well as digital) I was particularly drawn to Janosch Parker
's 'Primordial Ooze Ensemble'. I saw large oil painted canvases that I understand he had made in China. "...the result of a series of performances in which Parker, also known as Jan Ebeling, submits to a number of vulnerability tests. Employing ingeniously designed mechanical devices and organic substances ('primordial ooze'), Parker seeks to express with self-deprecating wit our precarious human condition. Based on photographs of performances, these oil paintings evoke the grand tradition of European history painting."
Wash © Janosch Parker
"I was working on a travel story in Ethiopia when I heard about the estimated 80,000 children living on the streets of Addis Ababa. I extended my stay by a few days and start researching and photographing the story. Through a local NGO I was able to make contact with Bruke, a 15 year old boy, who like thousands of other street children had sought refuge underground, making his home in a small drainage hole in the middle of the road. The Merkato commercial center of Addis Ababa has become the de facto place for Ethiopian children escaping rural poverty, AIDS, abusive families, the clutches of indentured servitude and human trafficking. Thinking they have found a haven, they instead find the Merkato a harsh and dangerous environment. These children face the obvious daily struggles of finding food, protection and safety, and are forced to deal with the lingering and constant threat of sexual predators who prey on the vulnerable street children. With no social welfare system and the lack of enforceable child rights in Ethiopia, the children find themselves, in essence, in a state of civil death - the legal status of a person who is alive but who has been deprived of the rights and privileges of a citizen or a member of society.
I spent two days with Bruke, learning about what brought him to the streets and how he survives. For a short while I was able to get sporadic reports on his well-being from my fixer who passed through the area. For the last 2 1/2 years I have not had any news. I am planning to return to Ethiopia later in the year to expand on the work I started there, and with the hopes of finding Bruke again." - Jason FlorioView the magazine feature
.© Jason Florio
Photographer Dirk Anschütz
asked me to write something for his blog, The Heavy Light
, about how I put together aCurator magazine. So, I reluctantly talked about myself again...
A man after my own heart, he entitled it 'How aCurator's Curator Curates'. From Giddy Up © Dirk Anschütz
is a photographer
and a master printer - he owns and runs Silver 68
, a traditional black and white lab in Brooklyn. He is a faculty member at ICP and is in his final semester pursuing an MFA from the Photography, Video and Related Media Department from the School of Visual Arts.
John is contacting photographers, their studios, estates, assistants, to determine whether any developer trays remain in their collections. Unfortunately, a lot have been discarded over the years, but as you can see in his ongoing project John has successfully photographed several. Enjoy letting your imagination run wild as to which of your favorites might have been printed in these.
"From the mid nineteenth century until today, silver gelatin printing has been one of the most utilized photographic processes. From classic reportage to fine art photography, the majority of it was performed in a black and white darkroom until the mid-1970's. As recently as 2000, black and white darkroom classes still served as the location for introduction to photography courses.
The digital advances in photography over the past ten years have been remarkable. Digital manipulation is found in most contemporary work, even within these developer tray photographs. This shift from film-based to digital imaging is occurring at a rapid rate, which is why photographing developer trays is a timely endeavor. Many photographers, printmakers, and photographers' archivists have already discarded or thrown out their developer trays because they believed they were no longer significant or useful. Irving Penn's developer trays have been thrown away, as have those of master printer Richard Benson. I am photographing available developer trays so that the photography community will remember specific, tangible printing tools that have been a seminal part of the photographic experience for the past hundred years. By titling each tray with its owner's name, I reference the historical significance of these objects in a minimal manner that evokes thought and introspection about what images have passed through each individual tray." - John CyrView the magazine feature
.Barbara Mensch's Developer Tray © John Cyr
, this time with Miss Sara Rosen
, about the inspiration for, and mission of, aCurator Magazine
There were many gorgeous-looking books laid out at the Aperture
press preview, not least of all 'Destroy This Memory', photographs by Richard Misrach. The book is being published to coincide with the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and accompanied by an exhibition on view at the New Orleans Museum of Art July 24 - October 24, 2010.
"The photographs in Richard Misrach's 'Destroy This Memory' (Aperture, August, 2010) are an affecting reminder of the physical and psychological impact of Hurricane Katrina as told by those on the ground, and seen through the lens of a contemporary master. Rather than simply surveying the damage, Misrach - who has photographed the region regularly since the 1970s, most notably for his ongoing Cancer Alley project - found himself drawn to the hurricane-inspired graffiti: messages scrawled in spray paint, crayons, chalk, or whatever materials residents and rescue workers happened to have on hand. At turns threatening, desperate, clinical, and even darkly humorous, the phrases he captured - the only text that appears in the book - offer unique and revealing human perspectives on the devastation and shock left in the wake of this disaster."
Destroy This Memory, photos by Richard Misrach
Afterlife 2 © Michael MassaiaBaron Wolman
recently introduced me to the work of Michael Massaia
, a young, New York-based photographer who uses a large format view camera and makes his own platinum/palladium prints. He describes the images as "one shot" candid scenes that have been pushed to their limit via film developing and printing techniques. Should you find yourself in Texas, Michael has a solo show of his platinums opening on June 12th at Afterimage Gallery
in Dallas. He is also represented by Gallery Two Seventy
in NJ.Afterlife 1 © Michael Massaia
Deep in a Dream 1 © Michael MassaiaDeep in a Dream 2 © Michael Massaia
aCurator is proud to support Snap Galleries
of London, England.
"Marianne Faithfull is the subject of our next full length exhibition, which features unseen images by Dennis Morris from the iconic Broken English session.
It's always a pleasure to work with Dennis Morris, a really inspirational photographer with an exceptional archive. This exhibition is a real exclusive - with the exception of the classic Broken English cover image, shown alongside, the images we will have on display in this exhibition have never been seen before. We will be posting further details on the website when the exhibition opens, but please do come and see this fabulous show, which starts on 11 June 2010.
Please note that edition sizes for Dennis' Marianne Faithfull collection are going to be reassuringly small. For example, the Broken English cover image, shown here, will only be offered in two sizes - with a 15 x 15 inch image size in an edition of 15, and a 30x 30 inch image size in an edition of 8.
If you can't wait and want to get this classic piece at the best possible price, you can order one right now here
."Marianne Faithfull © Dennis Morris