Magazine


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aCurator is pleased to begin a new year with an artist whose work I have admired for some time. 

Jen Davis' photographs have been widely exhibited since she graduated with her BA in 2002 (she subsequently gained an MFA in Photography from Yale University School of Art in 2008), and I have seen them in many, varied locations, most recently as part of FlakPhoto's 100 Portraits series. Brian Clamp introduced me to her photographs some time ago. It wasn't until I met her at Aperture's Snap! Benefit* in November, that I worked up courage to press her about a feature. She kindly pulled the images together during the holidays and here we are. Thanks to mutual friend, photographer Adam Krause, for endorsing me.

View the magazine full screen photo feature.

Untitled No. 34, 2010 © Jen Davis

*click through for a great pic of Jen at the event!

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Urszula Tarasiewicz is a graduate of the Polish National Film School. She says she occupies her time with "large format prints, making modern photo murals with minimalistic landscapes, pictures for interior decoration and film, theater and television scenography." She's currently working 14 hours a day on a movie set.

Her latest body of personal work is 'New Urban Legends', a project featuring local children dressing up as heroes and villains from their neighborhood. Here we present a selection from 'Firemen'.

Urszula shoots on a Hassleblad, on film.  

View the magazine full screen photo feature.

Check out some of Urszula's books.

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As of today, December 13th, 2010, a repeal of the heinous 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' act looks to be beyond hope. The act prohibits any homosexual or bisexual person from disclosing his or her sexual orientation or from speaking about any homosexual relationships while serving in the United States armed forces. Any person supporting this inhuman, impractical and absurd effort, rooted in religion, makes me about as mad as anything. I am humbled to publish a selection from Jo Ann's series 'Proud to Serve'.

'Proud to Serve' is a portrait project featuring Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) American service members who served their country in silence or were discharged under the current law, 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'.

There are roughly 65,000 gay service members currently serving in the armed forces. Since 1994, nearly 14,000 service members have been discharged for being gay. There are more than one million gay veterans.

Documentary photographer Jo Ann Santangelo is putting a human face on the statistics of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'. Over the last two years she has visited the homes and documented the stories of these men and women. More than half of the portraits featured in 'Proud to Serve' took place on Jo Ann's recent, twenty-eight day, 10,167-mile road trip around the United States. All images are available in a self-published eighty-two page, full-color, limited edition photography book.
 
'Proud to Serve' is currently on exhibit at The LGBT Center 208 West 13th Street, NYC.

View the full screen magazine photo feature.

Corporal Robert Potter © Jo Ann Santangelo

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Robert Herman is a true New Yorker with a body of photographs to prove it. The many images he's made for his upcoming book "The New Yorkers" are a great insight into the past 20+ years of culture, fashion and the changing environment in the metropolis. But Robert went to South Africa recently and I was interested to see how he'd report back.

"This was my first visit to South Africa and I fell in love with the country and its people, feeling welcomed and very much at home.  The 'revolution' is still fresh here and going on a road trip through the southern Cape inspired me. The people have not become cynical as of yet, but it is a complex land with many obstacles to overcome. Although it is a country with abundant natural resources, the wealth is in very few people's hands. The tension of economics and race is something that I find extremely compelling to try and capture. I find many parallels to America's past and present in South Africa. Empathizing with all sides, I look forward to witnessing, on a return trip, their continuing attempt to make a fair and unified country from the promise that was the end of Apartheid." - Robert Herman, December 2010



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Untitled, 2009, from the series 'Detroit' © Ian Willms

With a powerful spread of talent working around the world, Boreal Collective is an example of a small group of enlightened photographers coming together with their own voices and their own brand. With agencies disappearing and editorial assignments of any import few and far between, I expect to see more like this in the future.

In this feature, images from:

Ian Willms: "The photographs in 'Detroit' were made with a $30 plastic camera, manufactured en-masse in the 1980s for working-class families in China. The camera uses 120 format film and is equipped with a single element plastic lens. The body of the camera leaks light and scratches the negatives, while the primitive lens blurs and distorts the images. This camera was the absolute minimum amount of equipment available for me to create this series of photographs; anything less would have been ineffective and anything more would have been excessive."

Jonathan Taggart: "Ninety per cent of ecovillages and intentional communities don't make it past the planning stage or fail within the first year, and it is easy to see why: environmental ideals come in a variety of strengths and focuses, and the shared goals that initially unite members can later widen the rifts between them. While Whole Village has moved steadily towards its goal of sustainability since its founding just a few years ago, the success of the community rests as much on achieving social sustainability as environmental sustainability."

Rafal Gersak: "On a Friday afternoon... many can be found spending time with friends at a local pool, flying kites or visiting a nearby lake. For some there are even dog fights and the country's only golf course is located on the outskirts of the city. In these moments, the conflict seems a very distant thing. But reminders of war's long-held grasp on Afghan society are hard to miss."

Brett Gundlock: "The powerful, violent moves intimidate at first; but the rawness of the arm swings and chest pops is the voice of the dancer. This story is about a group of friends, each from a completely different background, brought together by Krump."

Aaron Vincent Elkaim: "Aaron specializes in editorial photography and has prioritized his personal work focusing on documentary photography with a cultural investment. He believes that the greatest photography is open ended; he doesn't believe in a beginning middle or end to a photo story but simply wishes to illuminate it, urging the viewer to ask questions rather than simply providing answers."  

View the magazine full screen photo feature

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Dave Land is a British-born, Berlin-based photographer, who was first inspired to create by the photographs of O. Winston Link. With an exhibition on in Berlin right now, aCurator presents a selection of Land's images of decay and destruction. They are taken in and around Berlin and capture what is left of history - slowly deteriorating and subject to vandalism. You can see the show at Galerie am Rathaus, Berlin-Schöneberg, until November 25th.*

"I first need a motif which I know will enable me to create something unique. Often, I will revisit a location to improve the shot if necessary. I use layers quite a lot, but hopefully subtly. I have some custom layers which I will apply to an image, sometimes all over the image or maybe just in one small area - it depends. I may work on an image for a day or two, sometimes a week. I try various ideas out until I have something I'm happy with and often that never happens! Each image that I do finish though is unique."

View the full screen magazine photo feature

*Exhibition extended by popular demand, through November 28.
Stage Left © Dave Land

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Another accomplished youngster. I'd seen one of Argentinian photographer Alejandro Chaskielberg's images illustrating a fiction piece in the New Yorker earlier this year. More recently, when I saw he was part of the Brighton Photo Festival, I visited his website and was just as thrilled by his work as I was the first time I saw it. I am particularly drawn to this series, 'Borders'; as Alejandro puts it, he is working with photography "in the border of the reality. Creating fictional scenarios with real people and situations." Chaskielberg shot on 6x6 positive film with a Rolleiflex.

Other projects include a unique series on the Argentine financial crisis in 2001, and more recently his ongoing project 'The High Tide: Native Islanders and the Community of the Paraná River Delta' which documents the Guaraní culture, and for which he received the 2009 Burn Emerging Photographer Grant. Chaskielberg was included in PDN's 30, 2009, 'Our Choice of New and Emerging Photographers to Watch'. And speaking of watching, here's Chaskielberg being interviewed in Brighton.

View the full screen magazine photo feature.

© Alejandro Chaskielberg

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aCurator is proud to present images from the digital exhibition '100 Portraits - 100 Photographers: Selections from the FlakPhoto.com Archive'.

November 6-13th is Fotoweek DC, and as part of the event, the city of Washington will be transformed into a nighttime gallery. The festival has traditionally leaned toward photojournalism but is introducing an art photo component with the 100 Portraits projection this year. Andy Adams, editor and publisher of FlakPhoto.com and Larissa Leclair, photography writer and curator, are presenting an exhibition drawn from the digital archive that has developed over four years of daily updates on Flak Photo. In the new tradition of online curation and celebrating the burgeoning online photo community that Flak represents, the two made their selections together in a series of Skype video chats.

"As an added fine art component to the NightGallery projections, this screening features 100 dynamic portraits from an exciting group of contemporary photographers in all stages of their careers, each selected from the digital archive on FlakPhoto.com. Our decision to highlight work from this website celebrates the role that a thriving online photography community plays in the discovery and dissemination of work produced by significant artists in the Internet Era. Contemporary photo culture is marked by a continuous flow of images online, and our aim is to take a moment to recognize some of the noteworthy photographs published in this ever-expanding archive over the past four years. In this context, projected several times larger than life, these portraits look back at us and embody a louder voice in the discourse of the gaze." - Andy Adams + Larissa Leclair


To learn more about the contributing artists and to see all 100 portraits, view the full online exhibition.

100 Portraits -- 100 Photographers: Selections from the FlakPhoto.com Archive from FlakPhoto.com on Vimeo.


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ClampArt is very pleased to present an exhibition of work by artist Lori Nix, her first solo show at the gallery.

Since the mid-1990s, Lori Nix has been building tiny dioramas in her studio in Brooklyn which she then photographs with a large-format 8 x 10-inch camera. The monumental prints that are produced showcase the wondrous and obsessive care that goes into every minute detail of Nix's breathtakingly convincing miniatures.

For her newest body of work, "The City" (2005-2010), Nix has been constructing indoor, post-apocalyptic, urban scenes imagining what the city may look like when all the humans are dead and gone.  As critic, Sidney Lawrence, wrote in 'Art in America':  "The implications of Nix's tableaux never seem to stop.  Oddly endearing, terrifying and often electrifyingly plausible, they prod us to ponder the fact that, like it or not, our fate is uncertain."

Due to the great pains the artist takes in attending to every last feature of her constructions, some of the artworks, such as her new masterpiece, "Map Room," require up to six months to realize. Thus, Nix's scenes are highly planned in advance, and her output notably small.  ClampArt has been patiently waiting three years for the artist to produce enough work to mount a solo exhibition.

Lori Nix has received several photography awards. She is a 2004 New York Foundation for the Arts Individual Artist Grant recipient.  In 2001 she was awarded a residency at Light Work (an internationally recognized photography organization in Syracuse, New York). Nix was a 1999 recipient of an Ohio Arts Council Individual Artist Grant; a 1998 recipient of a Greater Columbus Ohio Arts Grant; and she participated in the Artist in the Market-place program at the Bronx Museum of the Arts in 2000.  Museum exhibitions include 'Fresh! Contemporary Takes on Nature and Allegory' at the Museum of Glass, Tacoma, Washington; 'Picturing Eden' and "Vital Signs" at the George Eastman House in Rochester, New York; Katonah Museum of Art's 'I Love the Burbs' in Katonah, New York; and 'Innocence' at the New Britain Museum of Art, New Britain, Connecticut; to name just a few. Her work is represented in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas; George Eastman House, Rochester, New York; Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas; and the El Paso Museum of Art, El Paso, Texas; among many others. - Brian Clamp, Director.

The City opens at ClampArt, NYC, on November 4th and runs through December 18th, 2010.

View the full screen magazine photo feature.

Control Room, 2010 © Lori Nix

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aCurator is proud to support Aperture Foundation.

Paul Strand (born 1890, New York; died 1976, Orgeval, France) was one of the great photographers of the twentieth century. As a youth, he studied under Lewis Hine at the Ethical Culture Fieldston School, going on to draw acclaim from such illustrious sources as Alfred Stieglitz and Edward Steichen. After World War II, Strand traveled around the world - from New England to Ghana, France to the Outer Hebrides - to photograph, and in the process created a dynamic and significant body of work. During the 1970s, major exhibitions of his work were displayed internationally, cementing his reputation as one of the greatest American photographers.

'Paul Strand in Mexico' is an exhibition of over a hundred photographic works including vintage prints and previously unseen documents and ephemera related to Strand's time in Mexico and is accompanied by a printed volume that documents the complete photographic works made by Strand during his 1932-34 trip to Mexico as well as a second journey in 1966 -- a total of 234 photographs, 123 of which have never before been published.

The exhibition is at Aperture through November 13th but you can see Strand's 'The Mexican Portfolio', presented by Aperture, at the Bronx Museum of the Arts, through January 2, 2011.

View the full screen magazine photo feature.

Woman and child, Hidalgo, 1933, courtesy and copyright
Aperture/The Paul Strand Archive

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