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Now a classic, the Unseen festival took place over the weekend at Westergasfabriek in Amsterdam for its 8th edition. An occasion to see multiple facets of the photographic art, from classic black and white to the wildest uses of the medium. Young and old artists are confronting or complementing each other. Connoisseurs, collectors and ordinary people are strolling through the large exhibition area in the iconic gas tank. A surprise this year: the presence of Deck Gallery of Singapore exhibiting several pieces representing Singapore, among which an amazing “Hanging heavy on my eyes” by Ang Song Nian denouncing the haze issue in Singapore.
Berenice Abbott acquired a substantial fraction of Atget’s negatives in June, 1928, and quickly started work on its promotion. Abbott’s work on Atget’s behalf continued until her sale of the archive to the Museum of Modern Art in 1968. She published several books of Atget’s oeuvre like The World of Atget (1964), A Vision of Paris (1963), published a portfolio, Twenty Photographs, and wrote essays. Her efforts helped Atget gain international recognition. At the occasion of the retrospective of Abbott’s work at Huis Marseille, several Atget’s photographs printed by Abbott in 1956 are shown.
Berenice Abbott’s large retrospective at Huis Marseille covers her work from Paris to New York. She spent two years studying sculpture in Paris and Berlin and started her involvement with photography in 1923, when Man ray hired her as a darkroom assistant at his portrait studio in Montparnasse. Later on, she met and worked with Eugène Atget until his death. She then visited New York City where she realised most of her most famous work.
Brassaï views of Paris and its people are all breath taking. A Paris that does not exist anymore. Phantoms and shadows of things passed. A nostalgic trip back to the Paris of the 30s to the 50s.
Two photography giants are currently exhibited in Amsterdam. Brassaï at FOAM and Berenice Abbott at Huis Marseille with an extra thought to Eugène Atget, also shown in his relationship to Abbott. More impressions of these two exhibits in my news. Just follow the links. A ne manquer sous aucun prétexte!
The exhibition continues inside Queen Anne’s Summer Palace with photos dedicated to the velvet revolution of 1989. Seeing Havel and Dubček in the arms of each other is touching and allows strong souvenirs to resurface.
1945: “From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the continent”. Winston Churchill
1989: the curtain rises in Hungary, East Germany, Czechoslovakia and other countries, to never descend again.
2019: 30 years have passed – Fantastic and touching open-air exhibition around the Queen Anne’s Summer Palace in the royal gardens of the Prague Castle to commemorate the events of 1989 throughout the once called “east block”.
… with other photographers around fashion and the female body. Large exhibition of his works from the years 1950-2000 but also several works of his contemporaries and influences from previous historical periods. Helmut Newton in Prague: sophistication and beauty at Museum Kampa, the former Sova’s mills on the eastern bank of the Kampa island on the river Vltava.
Werner Mahler followed the miners of the Steinkohlenwerk Martin Hoop in 1975. An incredible testimony of the working conditions in the paradise of socialism. The coals miners are naked, with limited equipment and precarious working environment, extracting coal for the benefit of the homeland.
Germany 1993 – 60 years after the rise of the nazi Germany, 48 years after its fall, in a suburb of Berlin… meet, thanks to Ute Mahler, the friendly and sympathetic “Bomber”, a young East-German, living his passion in full daylight…
Ute Mahler followed Zirkus Hein between 1973 and 1974 within the borders of the GDR. Beyond the specifics of being a circus in a communist country in the 70’s, it is the human beings that Ute met that make these pictures remarkable.
A large retrospective of the work of photographers and partners Ute (born 1949) and Werner (born 1950) Mahler, both from the German Democratic Republic. A series of portraits of a small town today, of a circus in the 1970s, of a neo-nazi in the 90s, or of coal miners in the 70s show a not-unexpected facet of human beings confronted to adversity, boredom or simply poor living conditions. Stunning photographs showing some poetry were no one expects to find any.
Krijn Giezen (Noordwijk aan Zee 1939 – Caen 2011) was not really a photographer but used photography to document his discoveries and to develop, together with collages and installations mixing media, his conceptual art. He was fascinated by the smoking of fish on the coast line of The Netherlands and used this theme several times through the years.
Objectifs, the Centre for Photography and film is boldly “examining Singapore women’s private lives, and queer female relationships” in two exhibits “The hour before she sleeps” by Mindy Tan and “How she loves” by Charmaine Poh. Nothing offensive (to me) despite the big warning at the door “Please note this exhibition is rated Restricted 18 (Homosexual content). Age-checks may be required prior to entering the gallery”. Showing artists whatever their sexual orientation is a big progress for Singapore as homosexuality is not officially recognised.
Objectifs, the centre for photography and film in Singapore continues its discovery journey of the great photography artists of Singapore. After Mr Lui, it currently gives a large exposure to 87-year-old Lim Kwong Ling with his “Portrait of Home” exhibition. Breathtaking views of daily life in the Singapore of yesterday.
I took the opportunity of a short trip to Singapore to meet my old friend and fellow photographer Mr. Lui. We spent an hour evoking souvenirs and browsing through an amazing collection of colour photos spanning the 60’s and 70’s and all the cultural communities of Singapore: another treasure worth discovering.
Andy Warhol was a son of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. A visit to the Steel City was an occasion to also pay a visit to the museum dedicated to the artist, as Warhol took his inspiration from existing photographs.
Armando Jongejan (1960) spent several years of his life taking photographs of the monks’ life inside the St.Adelbert abbey of Egmond-Binnen. The result was exhibited during the Foto Festival Naarden, along with his book “Monnikenleven”. Although the topic can be perceived as very dry and confidential, Jongejan was able to depict the simplicity and humility of a monk’s life within the walls of an abbey.
Photos hanging in the open air on the gates surrounding the church of Naarden. An interesting way of exhibiting photographs.
Helena van der Kraan is a Dutch photographer born in 1940. She was featured in an exhibit of her most stunning portraits, in the attic of Naarden’s beautiful city hall.
At the Foto Festival Naarden, a beautiful exhibit in an old church: Eddy van Wessel is a Dutch photojournalist of the old type: the kind of Don mcCullin and Gilles Caron… hardship, tough environment, boots on the ground, close to his subject, great black and white pictures. Eddy van Wessel just was back from a trip in Irak, tracking the last followers of ISIS in their forced exile from their heaven on Earth caliphate…
Attended the Fotofestival Naarden 2019 held in multiple locations of the gorgeous Naarden vesting. An occasion to see the work of some refreshing photographers, like Thijs Wolzak who took pictures of people in their living environments. Weird, unusual, funny, astonishing, as the people in general can be.
A very unusual exhibition at the Rotterdam Kunsthal: The Anarchist Citizenship: Ode to Youthful Daredevils gives us an insight on on the young Somalilanders, inhabitants of Somaliland, dress and behave in their country. The installation consists of juxtapositions of photos printed on silk and plexiglass. They move with the air being displaced as we walk through it. The project is a collaboration between Amal Alhaag and Nadine Stijns.
Well known for his black and white photographs taken in Amsterdam and Paris in the 50’s, Ed van der Elsken also took throughout his life a large amount of pictures in colour on slides predominantly in the 60’s and 70’s. The fotomuseum in Rotterdam restored these pictures to their original glory. The result is a magnificent ode to life and love and a touching homage to human diversity. From Amsterdam to Dhaka, from Cuba to Tokyo, Ed van der Elsken shows his profoundly humane eye and sincere love for people. The large collection of photographs is presented in a buoyant way, as a celebration of humanity.
Coup de ❤️ for the photos of Alejandro Cegarra, an extraordinary young (29) photojournalist from Venezuela, featured at the 2019 World Press Photo exhibition. His series “State of Decay” got him am award for Long-term projects. The Venezuelan society has been in a long state of decay, degrading day after day under Chávez and now Maduro with no sense of an outcome, happy or else. We see it every day on TV and then zap to some other news. The people of Venezuela suffer it day after day, with violence, deprivation, tears, political chaos, No way for them to zap from this daily nightmare and move on to something better. Cegarra has documented over the years this violence from within and brought back powerful pictures of an unimaginable turmoil with a divided society of ordinary people rising up to the occasion or not.
More on his website
The world press photo edition 2019 is upon us. The exhibition is presented in the beautiful Nieuwe Kerk on the Dam in Amsterdam. As usual, our eyes are confronted with a sum of misery, tears, blood, human suffering, absurdity, mal treatment of women and children. But yet, these are the best photographs of events and people around the world. My good friend Thierry calls it “the horror of the world that feeds the photojournalists“. This horror is relentless but, once in a while, there is some hope, like this picture by Iranian photographer Enayat Asadi of illegal refugees waiting to take a ride on a wagon at the eastern border of Iran and where one of the immigrants is comforting his companion. A simple image showing two human beings helping each other.
The Deutsche Börse art collection comprises approximately 1800 works from over 120 international photographers, including famous names like Diane Arbus or Walker Evans. FOAM in Amsterdam proposes a large exhibition “Changing Views – 20 Years of Art Collection Deutsche Börse“. The first part of this exhibition in four parts is titled “Chapter 1: Germany” and shows the view of their own country by various German photographers.
Everlasting coup de ❤️ for the photos of Ed van der Elsken, this time, spotted on the walls of the AMC hospital in Amsterdam. Ed van der Elsken was extremely active in the years 50 and 60 and at the top of his art, both in Amsterdam and Paris, but also later on in Japan. I associate his black and white photographs of Paris and Amsterdam with the nostalgia I have for a world that does not exist anymore, for a moment of my life and a period of time that will never be back. A world where life appeared simpler, where happiness was within reach, where artists were gathering to reinvent the world permanently, where a laughter, a glass of wine, an animated discussion with a good friend could make your whole day. Of course, the 50’s and 60’s were also full of pain and drama, wars and misery but what’s left behind now from that era, apart from the History with a big H, is the humanist approach to everyday life.
Itinerrands playing it iconic, in front of MBS, thanks to Susan.
… and finish with some collages by students – a collection of hybrid icons.
A visit in London would not be complete without spending some time at the Saatchi gallery, looking at the bizarre pictures of Jessica Craig-Martin.
In a day rich of visual wonder, strolling through the photographic collection of the V&A Museum.
Taking the opportunity of being in Tate Britain, discovering a Czech-born photographer and her portraits of people in their everyday lives.
A fantastic comprehensive exhibition of Don McCullin at Tate Britain in London. An oeuvre spanning over several decades and all the continents. Don McCullin has been everywhere with his profoundly human eye. No one can put it better than himself “Photography for me is not looking. it is feeling. If you can’t feel what you’re looking at, then you’re never going to get others to feel anything when they look at your pictures”. I am glad I was able to be there.
Itinerrands taking an olympic walk on the shores of Marina Bay in Singapore, thanks to Susan.
Lost paradise, haunted places, souvenirs of past battles, a reflection of age and death, Sally Mann explores in this exhibit the Deep South of the USA.
Visited a small scale exhibition of young Latino talents at the Houston Center for Photography. “Photography at its limits” explores “the regimes of power that have naturalised and popularised the use of the photograph as a means of tracking and controlling the world at large”…
Itinerrands on a nostalgic trip to Chaville, France, the town where I grew up. Merci beaucoup Evelyne pour ta contribution discrète à cette période.
Just for Facebook, because nudity in Art is not acceptable to them (but genocide seems to be), a link to my website page to signal this interesting exhibit at the Sieboldhuis in Leiden.
The Sieboldhuis in Leiden was purchased by Ph.F.B. Von Siebold (1796-1866) to exhibit his collection of Japanese objects. it is now a foundation established “to further express the long and special ties between the Netherlands and Japan”. There was a new occasion to visit this special place during the recently opened photo exhibition titles “Japaans naakt” or “Japanese Nudes”.
Coup de ❤️ today for Pearl Gan, a Singapore photographer and dear friend who recently published her new website. Pearl describes herself as a storyteller who tells stories with her images. She was heavily involved in the Asia Malaria project with the University of Oxford, which described the damages of malaria in Asian populations. She loves to get close to the people she photographs, capture them in their day to day activities, get to know them and their stories. I particularly enjoy her black and white portraits, but not only…
Coup de ❤️ today for Anette Brolenius discovered at the Cobra Museum of Modern Art. Anette was born in Stockholm and now lives in The Hague. Her serie of portraits of women’s rights activists, male or female in the exhibition “Unsung” are just stunning. More on her photography can be discovered on her website.
Kati Horna, Eva Besnyö and Ata Kandó are three photographers who studied under the then famous photographer József Pécsi in Hungary. They were not as widely known as their male contemporaries and compatriots Brassaï, Robert Capa and André Kertész. All three were forced to flee Hungary in the 1930s. They all settled in different places (Mexico for Horna, The Netherlands for Besnyö and Kandó) and continued to exercise their art in their new home. The beautiful Cobra Museum of Modern Art in Amstelveen devotes a large space to all three in a huge exhibition around Kati Horna mainly “Kati Horna, Compassion and Engagement”.
A very bizarre, well-visited exhibit in the Gemeentemuseum in The Hague: a large retrospective of Erwin Olaf’s work for his 60th birthday. Olaf is a famous Dutch photographer. Most pictures cannot be shown here. Not my cup of tea as we say in French, but still worth the visit for education purposes mainly.
An unusual photo exhibit at the Resistance Museum in Amsterdam: the German troops invading Holland on May 10th, 1940 took photographs as if they were mere tourists. This must have been a walk in the park for them…
A strange exhibition at the Nederlands Fotomuseum of Rotterdam. An installation by Alfredo Jaar based on a photo of Koen Wessing taken in Nicaragua during the last days of the Somoza regime. The exhibit continues with a series of chilling photos from The coup of September 11st, 1973 in Santiago. The famous photos of blind military repression haven’t aged at all and are still very vivid.
Coup de ❤️ today for Merel Schoneveld, a young street photographer from The Hague, discovered during the Haute Photographie Rotterdam 2019. Her black and white pictures, taken mainly in The Netherlands, show a very diverse population, living together in this old country, in their day-to-day interaction with each other. Merel is among them, discreet but yet very present and engaged in their lives. She discovered this passion for photography very late in her young life and has created a large body of work to this date, all visible on her web site and instagram accounts. Merel’s web site can be seen here and instagram feed there.
Fourth edition of this salon/exhibition, during Art Rotterdam Week 2019. Younger and older talents are presented by International galleries. The prices are exorbitant but the photographs worth admiring. I have extracted some of the gems I particularly enjoyed.
Without knowing it, some places and attitudes shared with Martine Frank…
Robert Doisneau spent a lot of time photographing musicians and singers. Maurice Baquet and his cello of course, but also the famous singers from the 1950’s to today. A sweet and nostalgic trip down memory lane at Cité de la Musique in Paris.
A wonderful Martine Frank exhibit at the newly moved Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson in the heart of Paris.
Saskia van der Linden, a local photographer, took amusing pictures of famous Noordwijker in poses from famous paintings. Where different arts meet. A small scale exhibit is currently held in Grand Hotel Huis Ter Duin.
The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam has a rich collection of photographs but those are timidly presented in a remote corner of the vast museum.
The Dutch Café by a young photographer Stacii Samidin at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. A celebration of the Dutch diversity in a historical place.
Itinerrands taking a stroll in the heartland of Singapore in Toa Payoh. Thank you Chen Ee for your kind efforts!
Itinerrands on Sentosa Island in Singapore. Back to where it came from. Thank You Susan!
An article in Le Monde about HCB’s more intimate pictures.
Meeting Jimmy Nelson (and Stephanie van der Wiel) for his massive book “Homage to Humanity”. An excellent initiative by Boekhandel van der Meer in Noordwijk
The full article can be found here
I am very proud to announce that Mr. Lui Hock Seng’s artistic talent will be recognised in a solo exhibition starting on February 8th, 2018 at Objectifs – Centre for Photography and Film in Singapore.
All Photos © Mr. Lui Hock Seng
More information: https://www.objectifs.com.sg/passing-time/
Visiting the Peter Hujar exhibit at Den Haag Foto Museum. Active in the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s until his death in 1987, Peter Hujar took pictures of his contemporaries, like Susan Sontag and William Burroughs.
Another exhibit left a vivid memory in our minds: the repetitive pictures of Hans Eijkelboom. He took hundreds of pictures of people in the streets of European cities, matching them on clothes patterns or types. Here the green loden.
Visiting again the Sebastião Salgado exhibit Genesis in Rotterdam is like visiting an old friend… no need to recap, no need to catch up, it is well known territory, immediate understanding and the same awe is there! We can continue where we left it, one year ago, in Singapore. Marvellous setup, breath-taking pictures, really worth the trip. From Africa to Antarctica, from North America to Asia, Salgado’s Genesis pictures have something biblical about them. Our Earth and their inhabitants are just amazing and we should be reminded of that constantly.
Very big Bruce Davidson exhibit at the Nederlands Fotomusuem in Rotterdam. Pictures from the 50’s to the recent years, from New York to Paris. The famous pictures from his most famous series, from East 100th Street, to Brooklyn Gang, to Paris, to Los Angeles. The social struggles in the USA in the last 50 years. Nothing much has changed today.
Unseen Amsterdam is “the leading platform for contemporary photography”. Unseen Amsterdam was returning for its sixth edition at the beautifully rehabilitated Westergasfabriek this weekend. A beautiful vivid show of photographs, combined with a superb Autumn Dutch weather.
More details: www.unseenamsterdam.com
Pearl is a compassionate photographer. She is able to establish contact with her models and take the most natural compelling pictures of men, women and children in various Asian countries. The Asia Malaria Images Exhibition will be held between 2 – 29 September 2017 at the Promenade Level 8 of the National Library Singapore, 100 Victoria Street, Singapore 188064
The Black & White houses remain a fascinating topic for the expats in Singapore. History, architecture, style attract the people from overseas to these very special Singapore houses. I had the opportunity to help the French La Gazette team illustrate a series of articles about the Black & White houses. The result of this work was published in the July-September 2017 La Gazette magazine.
Photos © Albert Sim
Photos © Albert Sim
Go check the portfolio here
Taking care of the living by caring for the dead: a visit to a cemetery is always a good way to determine that…
Go check the portfolio here
Esther van Vechgel has captured Singapore in her “Double Stillness” series, expressed in different layers in the photographs. “The hectic city’s of Asia are potraited in a quiet way, to create a moment of stillness and wondering”
Esther is one of the regular participants to the ArtWalk@Wessex
More information about Esther: http://www.esthervanvechgel.com
Everything started when reading the following article in the Straitstimes:
Mr. Lui Hock Seng is a 80 year old Singaporean cleaner with a special talent: photographer. He has been recording life in Singapore with his camera since the early 60’s. A raw artistic talent and a tremendous historical value, and yet, totally unknown to the public!
I reached out to Venessa Lee, the author of the article, and to my surprise, she answered. I expressed to her my desire to own a copy of Mr. Lui’s “Clarke Quay’s Teochew Market”… it took a while, but here we are and it is simply gorgeous.
Venessa organised the gathering at SPH, Singapore Press Holdings this Thursday. Mr. Lui is a delightful, funny and witty, very modest gentleman and a great artist. He took the time to share with me some of his shots and I encouraged him to sort his negatives, to digitise them and to think about an exhibition of his work in Singapore.
On my side, I pledged to do my best to help him.
I am now the proud and unique owner in Singapore and elsewhere in the world of a piece by Lui Hock Seng, the hidden wonderful artist!
Mr. Lui is still taking pictures with his brand new Nikon, offered by the Japanese company, and still “looking for the weird and beautiful” as he puts it.
More information: https://www.worldpressphoto.org
Angeline Teo is a passionate photographer whose love lies in black-and-white film photography. In this journal, she keeps a memory of her first experience of Bhutan, a special place where life is simple and the people readily smiles with kindness.
If you are interested, contact Angeline directly.
A great exhibit of his work at Sundaram Tagore Gallery @ Gillman Barracks
4 very intense days in Japan with Glenn, Hannah and Karin on a photo shoot.
More to come here…
More news coming very soon…