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A friend of mine, Hugues, made me aware of a passed exhibit I missed because of COVID. It is now a virtual exhibit on the site of the bibliothèque numérique patrimoniale de la Ville de Versailles, La Sirène. Jenny de Vasson was a rich young woman living in the XIXth century, near Versailles. She was one of the first street photographers, a far predecessor of Robert Doisneau. She did that for fun mostly and left behind a wealth of photographs of her times, the people she met ad the places she visited. This is a wonderful walk through a distance time and space and a new window opened into the past.
What to do when you are bored and in lockdown? When you don’t have any new perspectives of discovering new horizons, new people and exotic landscapes and situations? Well… you put your coat on and get out to photography the beauty of your immediate surroundings day after day, preferably during the blue hour, at dusk, when no one is around. Carla Matthee, born in South Africa but living in Leiden since 2004, has created a beautiful series of intimate portraits of Leiden that can be visited on her website.
I took the opportunity of (still) open musea to visit the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam before it shuts down again for 5 weeks… Among a wealth of modern and contemporary art of the highest quality, a few photographs of their large collection are exhibited, among which four pictures by Cor Jaring, Who was very present in the Amsterdam of the 60’s. His photographs of John and Onno remained very famous to this day. At the same occasion, I browsed through a special exhibit of the recently passed Ulay. I cannot say I was impressed. Ulay was certainly an artist of his own but he existed for me though his relationship with Marina Abramović, present throughout as well.
I discovered the photos of Didier Bizet by chance, while browsing the emails I get from “L’oeil de la photographie”. I particularly fell in love with his “the big Lie” series of photographs of North Korea. As he puts it, it is “a trip to another world”. But Didier Bizet went further than the typical lines of obedient workers and students, the empty squares and the monumental statues of the Kim dynasty. A small, almost imperceptible, twist if you don’t pay attention and his vision of North Korea reveals the deadly absurdity of this regime. I let you discover it in the few extracts below and strongly invite you to explore his work further. Enjoy the massive pingpong player, the perfect student with a bubble gum, the AC/DC piano lesson and these two employees “steeling” the hammer…
Ed van der Elsken is back, at the Rijksmuseum this time. I always wondered how he “treated” Japan during his stays there in 1959-1960 and then in the second half of the 1980’s before his death in 1990. I was curious to see his “blessed eyes” fall upon this culture, so strange for us, so difficult to apprehend and to understand. His book about Japan “de ontdekking van Japan” remains almost impossible to get, so getting an insight on his vision of Japan, for a passionate lover of Japan like me, was crucial. Van der Elsken took the time, in Japan, to photograph not only the streets, the youth but also the a-typical Japanese: the yakuza, the sumos and the geishas. The result is stunning and triggers this deep desire to go back there very soon. The Rijksmuseum put together a large exhibition of his work, titled “a crazy world”, not only to show his Japanese pictures but mainly to get a deeper insight into the way he worked: multiple reframing of the same picture, to get the perfect balance for a publication or an exhibition. But what remains remarkable of Van der Elsken’s work, and for that matter for all the artists of that time, is to be seen on the several contact sheets exhibited: not many shots of the same subject, one, two, maybe three. We are far from the hundreds of shots one can take with a digital camera. One, two, three shots and the magic happens. Ed van der Elsken hd undoubtedly “blessed eyes” to get the decisive moment.
I went to the Rijskmuseum in Amsterdam for yet another van der Elsken exhibit. And I got to discover Wim Diepraam as well. Diepraam left a significant legacy of documentary pictures of The Netherlands in the 50’s and later. A country that does not exist anymore. 50 years of nostalgia, 50 years of photography, exploring the deepest layers of society. The glamorous and the ordinary. An excellent photographer of his time with a lot of empathy for his subjects. A discovery.
Steve McCurry continues to enchant me with his pictures. He has remained “in search of elsewhere” the title of his most recent book.
I never knew about the quaint museum of Hilversum, located in the beautiful building that used to be the townhall of the city. A large exhibition of photos by Belgian artist Lieve Blancquaert titled ‘Circle of Life’ makes use of the circular space on three stories to walk us around the circle of life, from birth to death and again. Date of birth, date of marriage, date of death summarise in few dry numbers our lives. Lives of hope, of suffering, of love, of pain, of tears and laughters. Lives of fun and sorrow, births of children and deaths of loved ones. Lieve went throughout the world, from her native Belgium to China, the USA, Ghana, Mexico, India and other places to show us that despite our differences, we all are human and we all go through the same phases of life, living them differently but none the less experiencing life in a universal way across borders, religions, social status. We are welcomed by a beautiful Japanese lady who invites us with a wink in her eye to enter the circle of life…
In a large exhibit, the museum of Amersfoort shows us what America is today. “This is America Art USA today” gives us a wide vision of the America of immigrants from the South, former slaves, far away from what’s shown everyday on Fox News. From the civil right movement champions now older, to the millennial wrapped in the American flag, from the reenactment of a slave rebellion to fresh immigrants hugging each other, the USA is showing its richness, its openness, its values. Let’s hope that THIS dream will become a reality again, very very soon.
It is never too late, one is never too old to discover a real jewel… 6 Mois “le XXI˚ siècle en images”, the 21st century in pictures. A beautiful format, a thick delivery literally full of pictures, a dream for those, like me, nostalgic of the photo reporters of the past, in these times of quickly browsing on the social networks and forgetting in the next second. This magazine is a real and rare pleasure. Browsing and dreaming through the pages in B&W and colours a moment to cherish. Thanks to Hugues for giving me this wonderful tip!
Visit to the newly created street art museum “straatmuseum” in Amsterdam-North in the impressive 7,000 m2 building of the former Nederlandsche Dok en Scheepsbouw Maatschappij (NDSM) shipbuilding company. A perfect location for such a collection of art. The high ceilings make the large paintings look small. with inspiration in comics and photography, but also in history, travels, personal experience, the various collection from all over the world is deployed in a street-like fashion. the visitor walks from street to street among the panels. I was particularly impressed by “Super Nurse” by Fake (Netherlands) and by “My death dream” by Cix (Mexico) inspired by the Mayan culture. ”La deriva” by Morcky (Italy) depicts the end of a love story that occurred in Amsterdam and Helen Proctor (USA) shows us a mountain landscape of Les Alpilles. A very nice experience in this new place, relatively remote and very quiet because of the current restrictions in place.
A large exhibit about Rotterdam at work at the Nederlands Fotomuseum. Not that the topic is exciting, but some jewels can be found in the large body of pictures presented, covering the whole 20th century. It shows a world that does not exist anymore. The modern Rotterdam harbour is high tech, the containers are moved around with computers, a society of services, of “working from home”. Difficult to imagine that only 60 – 70 years ago, a large population of workers, like this man staring at us with a cigarette pinched between his lips, lived in this busy city.
A disappointing series of photographs at the Somfy Photography award 2020 exhibit, with a theme of “Gimme Shelter”. More on this award here. Difficult to extract appealing pictures in this group of 9 nominations of young photographers from various places in Europe. More than the pictures themselves, it is the project that is judged. I was only sensitive to some of the shots by Jordi Ruiz Cirera (Spain) and Antoinette Nausikaä (NL). “La Espera”, Cirera’s project, explores the waiting, where as in “A river runs through me”, Nausikaä explores the confrontation of nature and civilisation along the river Seine.
WWII ended 75 years ago. A commemoration of 5 years of occupation of The Netherlands in Europe and Asia led to the Dutch public selecting 100 photos to represent this painful part of history. The result is a stunning exhibit in black and white and colour at the small Amsterdam Verzetsmuseum (resistance museum). It tells about ordinary people caught in extraordinary situations, violence, destruction, misery, hunger, sorrows and, retrospectively, about the absurdity of it all when, 75 years on, we are all one and we don’t spend hours and days without crossing the path of peaceful German tourists enjoying the fresh air of the North Sea beaches.
While visiting the ‘China imagined’ exhibit in Breda, I stumbled upon (and bought in a heartbeat) what looked like a great book by a photographer I didn’t know… Carl de Keyzer. Carl visited the USSR of Gorbachev in 1989 and brought back stunning black and white pictures. The cover of his book and the topic immediately resonated in me… and I drew the parallel with the amazing photos of Henri Cartier-Bresson assembled in his 1973 ‘A propos de l’URSS’ (About Russia) but HCB reported on the URSS of Brezhnev, at the peak of the soviet power. Looking a bit further, I realised that Carl, a Belgian, was a member of Magnum… this explains that… Great photographer. I am looking forward exploring his other projects in Cuba and North Korea.
The old KPN building in the centre of Breda is the perfect location for a broad exhibit of contemporary photography from around the world. Large empty rooms, high ceilings, wide windows letting a beautiful summer light bathe the ample displays. I decided to focus on two of the many photographers displayed at the occasion of this 2020 edition: “Three colours I know in this world” by the young Romanian photographer Kingsõ Bede. Kingsõ did not grow up in Ceausescu’s Romania but was marked by the traumas her parents lived through. Her pictures are haunting us long after we leave the building. Luis Cobelo comes from another part of the world, also marked by continuous traumas: Venezuela. His series Zurumbático shows bizarre situations depicted by the word itself, a mixture of dazed, bemused, stupid, melancholic, gloomy, dull, puzzling and drunk… the feeling we leave with.
An astonishing contrast at the Church of our Lady built from 1410 onwards. First and foremost the series “Watering my Horse by a Spring at the foot of the Long Wall” by Xu, Xiaoxiao who travelled 25,000 kilometers along the Long Wall to document the lives of the people she met. Xiaoxiao shows them in their daily lives and rites. Many more photos can be seen on her web site right here. In any case, she definitely is my Coup de ❤️ of this festival. Feng Li invites us to his weird White Night. After Nanjin in 2016 and Paris in 2017, he is now exhibiting in Breda. Guo Yingguang depicts the Bliss of Conformity in a poignant installation from the matchmaking corner in the People’s Park of Shanghai where desperate parents trying to find a spouse for their daughter. The church of Our Lady was caught in the statue storm (Beeldenstorm) of 1566 and became Protestant after that. Some damage is still visible today but the main statue of Virgin Mary is still intact, offering an amazing echo to the young Chinese gymnasts. We finally leave China to go back to the vibrant brabantian southern city of Breda after a farewell from two young Chinese ladies from Shanghai.
At the occasion of Breda Photo 2020, a trip through a weird gallery of portraits by young photographers from various horizons, genders and breed. Baqteria, also known as “the Ghost rider” is from Kibera, the largest slum of Nairobi. Hatti Rees is British. Not sure if Britain is still on Earth at this point in time, after its divorce with the EU. She/he is showing disruptive auto-portraits from another galaxy. Finally Bruin Parry, a Dutch artist with Down syndrome, puts on a performance as a free-styling dancer on the Johnny Jordaanplein in Amsterdam.
Coup de ❤️ for the photos of Romain Laurendeau and his series on “Kho, the genesis of a revolt” depicting the demonstrations against the sclerotic military-backed regime of Algeria: a country where the “80 plus” generation leads the “30 minus” population – How can that work? Romain Laurendeau is among the people when he takes his pictures. One of his shots stuck in my memory: the portrait of this woman in the crowd looking at the young boy on the shoulders of a demonstrator. Photojournalism at its best, chapeau!
The world press photo edition 2020 is again in the beautiful Nieuwe Kerk on the Dam in Amsterdam. A regular rendez-vous with photography. Many subjects cover the world events, my favourite. This year, an excellent series by Romain Laurendeau on the Kho movement in Algeria. More to come on that.
After several months of coronhibernation, it seems that the world has decided to continue turning. FOAM in Amsterdam has reopened its doors and offers a small travel through the 1970’s of Vivian Maier in full colours. Vivian Maier was well known post mortem (she died poor and anonymous in 2009) for her discrete black and white street photography but we can see here a series of color photographies showing an America yet familiar (clothes, attitudes, expressions, black children with fear in their eyes, black men selling cheap items on the street, huge cars passing by) but at the same time an America that is no longer: Those white women with excentric wild glasses, curlers and fancy dresses, tailleurs and white gloves are no longer strolling the streets of Chicago, New York or elsewhere. At that time, Nixon was president and America was undisputed. Its people were living their American dream, mostly unconscious, if not ignorant, of the surroundings. As the newspaper reports: “Bombs saved lives” said Nixon… and they believed it. 50 years later, the black children still have fear in their eyes, black men are still having lesser jobs but those white ignorant people that believe that America is stil the way it was are no longer nonchalant and insouciant – and that’s the way it should be.
Coup de ❤️ for the photos of Jule Forth. Jule is a talented young lady with a mission: as a cultural anthropologist, she wants to “visually document the (extra) ordinariness of everyday life”. She’s done that in Leiden, her hometown, India and Iran. In these troubled times of staying at home, a refreshing view on mankind and stunning pictures of far away. I highly recommend a visit to her website here.
While passing by in Maastricht, a nice step out to a humanity on its way to extinction. Jimmy Nelson is exhibiting his Homage to Humanity at the Museum aan het Vrijthof: beautiful people magnificently shot by Nelson with respect and care. And Stephanie van der Wiel is not far…
A new discovery today: the massive oeuvre of Eddy Posthuma de Boer. A giant in the footsteps of Henri Cartier-Bresson, Ed van der Elsken and Robert Doisneau. At 88, Eddy can look back at more than 60 years of pictures taken all over the world. Nostalgia for a world that was and is no more, for an Amsterdam that one can only dream about today. His colour portraits of the 70’s in the Netherlands are particularly touching – one can clearly see the evolution of the population of then and now. Eddy Posthuma de Boer was a photojournalist. He preferred greatly having one of his photographs on the front page of a newspaper and thereby reaching 275,000 readers at once, rather than a few hundreds at an exhibit. The photomuseum in The Hague is however paying a well-deserved homage to this great and modest giant.
Exceptional series of breath-taking portraits of flowers – a “tribute to flowers”, by photographer Richard Fischer at the flowerart museum of Aalsmeer.
Three very different exhibits at Fotomuseum Den Haag: Richard Learoyd, known for his portraits of sad looking skinny ladies but much preferred for his black and white landscapes, “La Soupe de Daguerre” displaying some of the photographs owned by the museum and finally a small exhibit of early photographs, when “Photography becomes Art” exploring the history of this art with spectacular views taken in the XIXth century.
Documenting The Netherlands today. This is the task Martijn van de Griendt was given by the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, with emphasis on the new codes of behaving around modern technologies and in groups. Bright colours, young and old, an in-depth dive into the Dutch society and the psyche of the country.
A marvellous exhibition of the fascinating Henri Cartier-Bresson’s trips to China in the periods 1948-1949 and again 1958. This very broad display shows a wide range of well-known photographs and also gems never seen before. It also provides an in-depth view on how HCB worked. Definitely worth an extended visit.
An exhibit high in the air, on top of La Grande Arche in La Défense, for a photographer taking things from the heights… Yann Arthus-Bertrand and his beautiful shots from the skies: a marvel for the eyes.
Large Paris Photo fair in a wonderful place: le Grand Palais in Paris. A huge amount of artists, old and new, presented by a good hundred of international galleries. Difficult to make a representative selection of the art seen, so I will just give some of the pictures that I particularly enjoyed, with a coup de ♥️ for the crazy and wild images of Hassan Hajjaj.
Fantastic exhibition at Japanmuseum Sieboldhuis in Leiden of the delicate etchings of Tanaka Ryōhei. The beauty of Japan in all its splendour. A remarkable work of precision leading to a photographic view of the country.
The association Stadsfotograaf Leiden gives a yearly opportunity to a photographer to portray the city and its inhabitants. In 2018-2019, this chance was given to a group of seven young women anthropologists. The result of their work was displayed in the local newspaper and also in an exhibition.
Jimmy Nelson relentlessly travels to the most remote places on Earth to document the vast diversity of the human species. He brings back stunning pictures of our humanity. He calls it its “Homage to Humanity”, a magnificent collection of individual histories and a warning signal for a future without them? A small scale exhibition of some of his photographs is presented for a month at Kunsthuis Leiden.
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…