After making two trips to the West Bank twenty years apart, Belgian photographer Frédéric Moreau de Bellaing has collected his photographs into a book, titled "Lueurs d'espoirs / Glimmers of Hope." The book shows de Bellaing's travels through everyday life in both 1995 and 2015.
The book includes an essay by Leila Shahid, Palestine ambassador in France and then Belgium for the last 20 years.
Here is Frédéric's own statement:
"When I present this project, the same question comes back again and again: "Why Palestine?" Of course there is my indignation against oppression but, rightly, some respond to me that the Palestinians are not the only ones suffering. As often in this case, it is the personal journey that makes the difference.
The first intifada broke out in 1987. I was 16 years old. TV screens fed me up me with pictures of teenagers fighting with stones against heavily armed soldiers. I was shocked but the media release their floods of dramatic images all day long drowning indignations in an ocean of bad news.
Two years later when I began high school, I met Mina Shamieh. He was Palestinian and student like me. He was a warm person and his smile was disarming. We quickly became good friends. Until then, the Palestinian issue was but a media abstraction. Through my friendship with Mina, it took human shape.
The media feed us with pictures which are sometimes sensational but generally disconnected from human touch and identification to the Palestinian people has, for too long, take shape through empathy for their suffering.
To overcome this cathodic anesthesia, we must awaken the sympathy and empathy, in other words, we must become human.
With "Glimmers of Hope", I hope to convey the warmth and the desire to live which inhabit the Palestinian people.
To you, Mina, my old friend, with whom I have enjoyed sharing the small pleasures of everyday life."
New Yorker Erica Price gives us a last glimpse at the Streit matzo factory, which recently left Manhattan's Lower East Side for a new home in New Jersey. Streit's kosher food was established in 1916 by Aron Streit, a Jewish immigrant from Austria, and the factory was making matzos at their Rivington Street location since 1925, operating two 75-foot ovens, producing 900 pounds of matzo per hour.
Betty Davis, 'They Say I'm Different' photo shoot, Just Sunshine Records, 1974. Photo by Mel Dixon. Courtesy of Light in the Attic Records and powerHouse Books
Lost Rockers: Broken Dreams and Crashed Careers (powerHouse Books) is a fascinating collection of tales about musicians who almost made it, back in a time when really making it through hard work and dedication, without entering a TV talent contest, was an option. "Some were ahead of their time, some were ill-equipped to deal with success, some simply fucked up."
Gloria Jones, Los Angeles, 1973. Photo by Jim Britt
'Lost Rockers' digs deeply into each of the 20 or so musicians in the book, with several pages about their histories, success and failures, and even lyrics, accompanied by lots of great photos and ephemera. I was interested to see Betty Davis on this list, but the book suggests her "cuckolded" ex-husband, Miles, played a role in her early retirement from the industry. It is hard to summarize what went awry for each here in the blog, so go ahead and pick up a copy of the book for under $30.
Rik Fox, hair metal hero, Surgical Steel, 1986. Photo by Michael Richard Sneeburger. Courtesy of the Rik Fox Archives
Kenny Young, "Bow Wow, Kenny with his Pomeranian," New York, 2003. Polaroid Color 668 by Gail Thacker. Courtesy of Gail Thacker
Chris Robison and David Johansen with Andy Warhol, Max's Kansas City, 1975. Photo by Bob Gruen
Cherry Vanilla, New York, 1978. Photo by Leee Black Childers. Courtesy of Leee Black Childers
Gonchigsuren has launched a fundraiser not just to have his worthy book published AND have an exhibition, but ALSO included is a competition for young photographers - he is a noble man with a fantastic archive who deserves your backing. This is the first campaign I have seen in a while where the book is under $50 - it's $39 and will be well worth it (+ shipping!)
Please spread the word and help show the world this little-seen history "One feature of this book is showing the difference between daily lives in socialism and democracy." I challenge you to watch the video and not fall in love.
It was in 2010 that Robert Rutöd first contacted me and made me smile with his photographs. Since then he has stayed right in the zone, consistently entertaining. So I'm happy to report the news that he has collected 50+ into a new book.
"Being at the right place at the right time is usually associated with happiness and success. But what happens when we are at the right place at the wrong time? Do we even know that this is the right place? And what if it turns out that it is the wrong place after all? But the right time!"
'Right Time Right Place' received several awards including the New York Photo Award, the Special Prize of the Czech Center of Photography, and most recently Artist of the Year at Dong Gang International Photo Festival 2015 in South Korea.
Don Whitebread is a self-taught photographer whose photographs have been widely exhibited and well published. He fell for the night skies when camping as a kid, are he makes these mainly in the sweeping American West. Don also now teaches others the art of night photography. Visit his website for magnificent flora and fauna and more.
Some of Don's gorgeous photographs made in Yemen, in 2010, were published here in the blog in 2011. Don was able to visit as Yemen was "on the cusp of political and environmental disasters that may soon put an end to the Yemeni's proud, traditional and ancient lifestyle."
You've got to love a public installation! Emma Blau's Face Forward exhibition, on now in London, England, is an installation of supersize prints of locals with whom Emma collaborated to make these fabulous portraits.
"Face Forward is a public art exhibition created by award-winning photographic artist Emma Blau that utilises building site hoardings in the Church Street area of Westminster, which is currently undergoing regeneration. A resident herself, Blau's large-scale photographic portraits feature local people who will be affected by the huge transformations taking place in their neighbourhood. Face Forward is on display throughout 2016."
The issue of gentrification is being addressed in photography quite extensively at the moment but Emma's project elevates the issue with its impressive installation. Not an easy challenge to host an exhibition in the streets - imagine the logistics!! Check out the installation photos.
Emma will lead a tour of all three streets on April 27th, 2016. Head over to the official Facebook page for details.
She Who Tells a Story: Women Photographers from Iran and the Arab World opens at the National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA) in Washington, DC, on April 8, 2016, with an opening reception on the 7th, and runs through July 31, 2016. The exhibition "challenges stereotypes surrounding the people, landscapes, and cultures of the region, and provides insight into political and social issues. The exhibition presents more than 80 photographs and a video installation. These provocative works - most created within the last decade - range in genre from portraiture, to documentary, to staged narratives."
Gohar Dashti, Untitled #1, from the series "Today's Life and War," 2008, Chromogenic print, 27 5/8 x 41 3/8 in.;
"The title of the exhibition is inspired by the Arabic word rawiya, which means "she who tells a story." It is also the name of a collective of women photographers based in the Middle East founded in 2009. Women worldwide have been pioneers in the mediums of photography and video since their inception. This exhibition demonstrates that the work of women photographers continues to resonate on a global scale."
Rania Matar, Stephanie, Beirut, Lebanon, from the series "A Girl and Her Room," 2010; Pigment print, 36 x 50 in.;
"Each artist in She Who Tells a Story offers a vision of the world she has witnessed. The photographers' images invite viewers to reconsider their own preconceptions about the nature of politics, family, and personal identity in the Middle East."
Rania Matar, Reem, Doha, Lebanon, from the series "A Girl and Her Room," 2010; Pigment print, 36 x 50 in.;
Newsha Tavakolian, Untitled, from the series "Listen," 2010; Pigment print, 39 3/8 x 47 1/4 in.;
Courtesy of the artist and East Wing Contemporary Gallery
Nermine Hammam, The Break, from the series "Cairo Year One: Upekkha," 2011; Chromogenic print, 23 5/8 x 23 5/8 in.;
Courtesy of Taymour Grahne
Shadi Ghadirian, Untitled, from the series "Qajar," 1998, Gelatin silver print, 15 3/4 x 11 7/8 in.; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Museum purchase with the Horace W. Goldsmith Fund for Photography and Abbott Lawrence Fund, 2013.571;