Actress Angela Featherstoneʼs first curated show, Fuck Pretty, is a collection of photographs by world-renowned and unknown women artists, whose work moves and inspires her. There are images from contemporary photographers Catherine Opie, Susan Meiselas, Tierney Gearon and equally important to the curator, an array of emerging artists, some of whose work the curator is proud to be showing for the very first time. The exhibit is accompanied by a musical score created by film composer Claudia Sarne (Book of Eli).
“In Dec of 2010, I found myself frustrated by forces beyond my control, alone and having just spent most of the year dealing with childhood trauma. I woke up, alone, right before Christmas and a conversation I had with my dear pal, Richard Jeni (r.i.p) came to mind. I had ranted to him about a deal gone south, ‘they always say, ‘she’s so pretty and funny’ but I say fuck pretty, gimmie money, get it now!’ Jeni laughed so hard and said, ‘Angie, FUCK PRETTY has to be the title of your autobiography.’
In a matter of minutes I found two great clips on youtube: The Network ‘I’m mad as hell and I’m not gonna take it anymore’ speech and a kickass clip of L7 at Cannes playing ‘Questioning my sanity’. I then found the quote: ‘in order for something to be beautiful it doesn’t have to be pretty’ – Rei Kawakubo.
Having had two to three good ideas before in my life – I knew I had something. I called my old pal, Gallerist Robert Berman and said I wanted to curate an all female photographer show called FUCK PRETTY. Luckily, he said yes.
Since December, the show has really come into perspective, thanks to the amazing collaborative efforts of these brilliant photographers. I have come to realize that this show reflects my life – where I’ve been, where I am and where I want to go – in a way I couldn’t articulate on my own: from abuse and desolation to anger, alienation, acknowledgment and unification. The photographs are all, in some way, a reflection of who I am. So in the end, Jeni was right. It is an autobiography of sorts.”
– Angela Featherstone
EXHIBITION: July 21, 2011 – August 20, 2011
GALLERY HOURS: 11 – 6, Tuesday – Saturday
RECEPTION: Thursday, July 21, 2011, 6:00 – 9:00 pm
LOCATION: Bergamot Station 2525 Michigan Ave #C2, Santa Monica Ca 90404
INQUIRIES: 310-315-9506 or email@example.com
About Angela Featherstone
The full impact of Angela Featherstone’s curatorial debut is in the cross hairs of the image narrative captured by the photographers and the personal narrative as extrapolated by Featherstone and further expressed via an installation that underscores a chronological journey of self-discovery and self-revelation.
An accomplished model and actress, Featherstone’s interest in photography began as a model when she worked with such greats as: David Bailey, Bruce Weber, Irving Penn and Piero Gemelli. As an actress, Featherstone is best known for her roles in The Wedding Singer, Friends and recently Beneath The Dark (IFC). Also an accredited writer, Featherstone has written for Time, Flare (Canada), Jane magazines and created sitcoms sold to Dreamworks, NBC and Sony.
In 2010 while reflecting upon childhood trauma, Featherstone was inspired to put together an exhibition that could shift that negative energy into a unifying autobiography emphasizing the enduring woman she has become.
The images from twenty famed and emerging female photographers engage in what Featherstone calls “the violent act of truth telling.” In other words: fuck pretty.
By Jim McKinniss
The following is a press release from Fraenkel Gallery in San Francisco about their show called RICHARD LEAROYD: Presences. Unfortunately the show ended June 25, 2011 and I was not aware of the show in time to inform the readers of this blog. However, Fraenkel Gallery has published a catalog of the images in the show. I have a personal copy of the beautifully printed catalog which may still be available by contacting Fraenkel Gallery. Contact information is provided below.
Historical note: The camera obscura was known to Leonardo da Vinci who remarked on it in 1490. The principles of the pinhole camera and camera obscura date to at least the 4th century BC.
Fraenkel Gallery is pleased to present its first exhibition of photographs by the British artist Richard Learoyd. The works will be on view from May 5 to June 25, 2011. Learoyd’s minutely detailed, large-scale color portraits do not look like other photographs.
Made with a giant camera comprised of two rooms, Learoyd’s subject (generally a person, though sometimes an object such as a mirror) occupies one room containing a powerful light source, while the photographic paper occupies the adjacent camera obscura (“dark room” in Latin). Connecting the two rooms is a lens set within a bellows – an accordion-like contraption dating from the medium’s first century.
Learoyd’s pictures are unique direct-positive images produced without a negative. The photographs on view are images made by the direct record of light reflecting from the subject to the photographic paper, yielding portraits of unsettling psychological intensity.
Learoyd was born in 1966 in Lancashire, England , and studied at the Glasgow School of Art. He lives and works in London. His photographs have recently been acquired by The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Yale University Art Gallery, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Victoria and Albert Museum, among others.
Fraenkel Gallery is located at 49 Geary Street, 4th floor, San Francisco. Hours are Tuesday through Friday, 10:30 am – 5:30 pm, & Saturday 11:00 am – 5:00 pm.
For further information, please contact Carin Johnson at 415.981.2661 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Jim McKinniss
I added a new link to the sidebar Web Links. That link is to a British blog written by David Secombe called The London Column. David writes about British photographers and writers who have covered the city for the last 60 years.
The last three issues and the two upcoming issues feature text by V.S. Pritchett commenting on the culture of London in 1962. The text is accompanied by photographs of the late German photographer Evelyn Hofer which serve to put an exclamation point on Pritchett’s words.
Hofer was born in Germany in 1922 and died in Mexico City in 2009. She moved to Mexico with her family in 1942, then to New York in 1946. She had apprenticed with two photographers in Zurich before attempting a professional career as a fashion photographer.
Hofer used a five-inch viewfinder camera to make orderly and well-constructed portraits and scenic photographs. Her style centered on straightforward compositions that were clear, but not simple. Her portraits show subjects looking lost, sad, or at least ambiguous.
This is a terrific blog. Take a look.
By Jim McKinniss
Doug Stockdale (yes, me) at the studio of Edizioni Punctum, Rome Italy, photo courtesy Marco Delogu
I was recently in Rome in the studio of the publisher Edizioni Punctum, working on the final design of my new book photobook Ciociaria. I have provided more details of the how this design process evolved during the day, as well as more about the back story of this book and project, on my photoblog, Singular Images.
The book launch is planned to coincide with FotoGrafia: Festival Internazional di Roma 2011 in Rome on September 22nd. Please let me know if you plan to meet me there, it should be fun!
BTW, I have started an interest list for those who might want to purchasing this book. Meanwhile book signings are in discussion for Portland, Paris, PhotoLA and maybe Milan. Thanks to all of you who have expressed an interest to purchase so far, I really appreciate your wonderful response!
below: Marco Delogu, photographer/founder/publisher of Edizioni Punctum (standing) with the designer Leonardo Magrelli
Frank Pictures Gallery presents Joe Aker’s SEDUCTIVE SYNTHESIS, An Erotic Exploration Of Architectural Surface: Gaudi & Gehry from June 10th – July 30th. Aker, a renowned Architectural photographer, was intrigued by the undulating shapes of Barcelona’s Casa Mila, an expansive apartment building designed by Antoni Gaudi that had been photographed as a whole many, many times. Aker decided to look for the sensuous details inside of the work, where most people never look. He captured slopes of Casa Mila that resemble a woman on her back with her breasts gently reclining on either side of her chest and chimney details suggesting a male phallus. Within the Gaudi structure, as well as the luminous surfaces of Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, Aker delineated forms that are as supple and suggestive as contemporary nude sculpture. Printed directly on aluminum panels, Aker’s work asks that we fantasize and allow our imaginations to go beyond architecture to discover its underlying dynamic eroticism. “Looking beyond surface is important to my work”, says Aker, “I want to strip away the masks of the exterior and show the emotional charge that runs beneath form into feeling.”
Joe Aker’s architectural work has appeared in all the major architectural magazines and he has photographed projects for major architects and developers such as Hines, Transwestern, DMJM, Rotett Studio, Cesar Pelli, Robert Stern, HOK, Gensler, Kirksey, Picard Chilton and Duda Paine. He was recognized as Artist Of The Year by the Houston AIA chapter in 2007. He grew up in Oklahoma City and has a degree in Marketing and Economics from Central State University in Edmond, Oklahoma and a degree in Photography from Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York. Aker opened his own photography studio in 1978 and continues to operate it today as Aker Imaging Lab, recognized as one of the premier photographic and digital labs in Texas. In 2005, Joe began to exhibit his own fine art work. He has had two solo shows at the Deborah Colton Gallery in Houston and a solo show of his landscape photography in Galveston at the Buchanan Gallery. He has recently been commissioned to produce a large sculptural photographic work for a new education building in the Woodlands and installed a large permanent artwork in the lobby of the new Performing Arts Center at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. (Shown Above) His work has appeared in numerous museum group shows and in now in the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Arts Houston. He has lectured on photography worldwide.
This show closes July 25, 2011.
Frank Pictures Gallery is located in Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Ave, Santa Monica, CA
By Jim McKinniss
ROSEGALLERY is pleased to present REFLECTION our second exhibition of photographs by renowned Japanese artist, Tomoko Sawada.
Since her breakthrough series, ID400, which debuted in 1999, Tomoko Sawada’s work has remained at the cutting edge of contemporary art and conceptual photography. Sawada’s pictures focus exclusively on herself and her assumed identities; her signature being the uncanny ability to alter her persona time and time again and to produce simple but fresh images that raise questions about cultural identity, gender performativity, the perception of the “self” versus the “other” and authorship in photography.
Unlike artists Cindy Sherman, Nikki S. Lee and Yasumasa Morimura, with whom she has been compared, Sawada rarely recedes into a theatrical environment or complicates her imagery with melodrama or stagecraft. Instead she relies on variations of superficial details in costume, makeup and hair, posture and facial expression, to examine the tension between a public image on the one hand and what we believe is our individual or core inner self on the other. As the artist herself states, “I don’t become someone nor do my pictures have a referent outside of myself.”
In her latest series, Mirrors, Sawada once again tackles the issue of identity by questioning the boundary between one’s own appearance and the self-image reflected in a mirror. The dual images in each photograph are presented like twins and while they bear a striking resemblance to one another, a closer inspection reveals how different they truly are. In her series Decoration, which will also be on view, Sawada transforms herself utilizing a form of contemporary street fashion, which is highly popular in her native country of Japan. With all of the accoutrements characteristic of the Goth Lolita movement, the artist highlights the use of clothing and accessories to create a personal identity and at the same time illustrates the ubiquity and anonymity ultimately engendered by this manner of self expression. Together, the images from Decoration and Mirrors question the extent to which identity is actually an expression of an authentic self and not simply the dramatic effect of how we present, perform and continually reinvent ourselves.
Tomoko Sawada was born in 1977 in Kobe, Japan and studied at the Seian University of Art and Design. She has been the recipient of the Grand Prize at the Canon New Cosmos of Photography, the ICP Infinity Hyogo Arts Award and the prestigious Kimura Ihei Memorial Photography Award. Her work is held by internationally renowned collections at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the International Center of Photography, New York, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Essl Collection, Klosternerberg, Austria, the Fogg Museum of Art, Harvard University, Cambridge, the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles and the Brooklyn Museum.
Monographs of Tomoko Sawada’s work include: ID400, Seigensha Art Publishing, 2004; School Days, Seigensha Art Publishing, 2006; Masquerade, Akaaka Art Publishing, 2006.
This exhibition runs 9 July – 17 September, 2011
Opening Reception. Saturday, July 9, 2011 from 6-8.00pm
Rose Gallerey is located at 2525 Michigan Ave, #G5, Santa Monica, CA
For more information please contact Shaun McCracken at email@example.com
By Jim McKinniss
Over the past decade Sara Jane Boyers has photographed 50 Chinatowns in the United States and Canada. The series began in San Francisco in 2001, home to the oldest Chinatown in America and the largest Chinese community outside of Asia. This initial examination awakened Boyers’ childhood memories of visiting the Los Angeles Chinatown near her father’s downtown office, and inspired her to begin a tour of Chinatowns across North America.
In Finding Chinatown, Boyer’s first solo exhibition at Craig Krull Gallery, her work explores the breadth of the Chinatowns that now range from historic to new strip malls serving the growing Asian population. Throughout, Boyers focuses on the detail of the everyday as she examines these portals into the American dream.
Her sensitive photographs convey the brightness of calligraphic signs, the steam of busy kitchens, and the silence of back alleys. Boyers remarks, “I am fascinated by the light, vibrance and history of the Chinatowns. The vitality of each living, changing community and the general welcoming nature of those who pass through inspire me always. What intrigues me most are the still moments, even in the oft-frenetic mist.”
Concurrently, the gallery will present exhibition of photographs by John Huggins entitled American Landscape. Known for his work in the Polaroid transfer process (the technique of transferring the emulsion from a Polaroid to another piece of paper), in this new series Huggins has enlarged original 4 x 5” transfers into 30 x 40” archival pigment prints. This expansion enhances the grain of the original photograph and the fiber of the paper, resulting in heavily textured images that suggest the quality of a tapestry. The amplified dimensions allow his work to encompass the grandeur of the American landscape, exploring iconic locales such as Niagra Falls, as well as emblematic themes like the American Flag and Baseball. A native of Southern California, Huggins is equally motivated by his personal history of place, as exemplified in his series of Malibu surfers.
Huggins was honored earlier this year with a retrospective at his alma mater, Hampshire College, which displayed works seen in this exhibition.
This exhibition runs July 30 – September 3, 2011
Artist reception on Saturday, July 30 4 – 6 pm
Craig Krull Gallery is located at Bergamot Station
2525 Michigan Avenue, Building B-3
Santa Monica, California 90404
Tel: (310) 828-6410 . Fax: (310) 828-7320
Tuesday – Friday, 10:00a.m. – 5:30p.m.
Saturday, 11a.m. – 5:30p.m.
By Jim McKinniss
The current issue (September 2011) of B&W + COLOR magazine has a feature on the color photography of Neil Krug. Krug lives in Kansas and has just published the book, Pulp Art. The book publisher is Nazraeli Press.
The photographs in the book have been created through a collaborative effort between Krug and his supermodel wife Joni Harbeck-Alexander who plays the roll of muse to Krug. The work is idiosyncratic to say the least. Most of the photos have been cross-processed and/or heavily manipulated in the wet darkroom.
Although many people will find that Krug’s photography offends their photographic aesthetic, I see that he has brought a unique sense of the narriative and a strong visual language to his work. You can see some of Neil Krug’s work, including images from Pulp Art, at this website: http://www.neilkrug.com/
By Jim McKinniss
ASSISTING ANSEL; Insights and Images by Alan Ross
Ansel Adams is arguably the most famous photographer of our time. There have been numerous shows and exhibits of his classic images, and books and articles published detailing the f-stops and techniques behind those images. But until now, there has never been a show about/that reveals the man behind the camera–who he was as a person, how he worked, what motivated him to expose film to light, his marvelous/magical sense of humor.
“Assisting Ansel: Insights and Images by Alan Ross,” is the story of the artist, mentor and friend through the eyes of the assistant who spent more time with Ansel than any other assistant, save one. Using his own photographs of Adams working in the field and in the darkroom, personal notes and letters from master to apprentice, anecdotes and recollections, Ross paints a picture of the iconic photographer as only an insider could. 20+ original Adams prints will be featured; among them will be several Adams images from Ross’s personal collection, including the rarely exhibited Portfolio VII, as well as several Ross originals with an emphasis on those made just before, during and after his tenure with Adams.
Ross will personally, in an intimate setting, reveal his captivating and often humorous experiences, as well as provide insights on the making of some of the most recognizable images that have shaped the realm of contemporary photographic art.
Preview Dinner/Reception: Friday, August 19th
–Invitation only, limited to 18/20 people
–$200. per person
–Dinner in the gallery, featuring fine wines and beverages, followed by a personally guided private tour of the exhibit, with time for questions, stories, etc.
Opening Reception: Saturday, August 20th 6PM-
–The Gallery will be open to the public, no charge
–Alan will be giving a personal lecture/presentation, with slide show; $35. per person; $50. per couple. Hors d/oeuvres and refreshments will be served.
Artist-in-Residence Master Sessions – Sunday, August 21st
–One-on-one time with Alan for portfolio reviews, help with camera issues, refreshers on the Zone System, technical problem solving, etc.
–Booked in 1/2-hour increments, with a maximum of 2 hours per person, at $150 per hour.
One-Day Field Session Workshop – Monday, August 22nd
–A day in the field with Alan
–Limited to 10 people, any level accepted although folks should have some working knowledge of their equipment (don’t want someone who’s never taken his/her 4×5 out of the box, for example)
–Fee of $200 per person
One-Day Darkroom Demonstration – Tuesday, August 22nd
–One-day darkroom demonstration in Ludo Leideritz’s darkroom.
–Would include masking technique
–Limited to 10 people
–Fee of $200 per person
For more information contact Ludo Leideritz phone: 949-350-9370
Gallery located at 211 E. Columbine Suite G-1, Santa Ana, CA
dnj Gallery is pleased to announce its upcoming exhibition Out of Con(text), a group show of several dnj Gallery artists, featuring the southern Californian artist Andrew Uchin in Gallery II.
Please see the July 9, 2011 Photo Exchange entry for the images of the other photographers presenting work in this group show.
dnj’s summer group show, Out of Con(text), displaces each gallery artist’s work out of the context of his or her own vernacular and places it within our summer exhibition. Out of context or in context, text, texting, text me, are all words and phrases used every day that invoke meaning within the framework of language. That language can be the precise written word, or merely a visual language of an artist. The chosen works both perform together and yet only reveal a small glimpse into the photographer’s intended meaning.
Michael Eastman, Richard Gilles, Cynthia Greig, Annie Seaton, Bill Sosin, Tom Stone, David Trautrimas, and Dylan Vitone are all represented and exhibited by dnj Gallery. Without exception each artist eagerly investigates the world surrounding him/her, and has built a strong point of view and personal visual expression. By placing work ‘out of context,’ the gallery hopes to highlight some of our favorite images in a more unique and select presentation.
Andrew Uchin, presented in Gallery II, included in this group show, illustrates actual ‘text’ by portraying its physical parts. He loves books — he grew up surrounded by them and that has led him to an earnest interest in their design and display. Books are the subject, theme and focus of investigation of Uchin’s work. He captures the ethereal and the delicate quality of books, also with a nostalgic eye. Books become a reflection of the age in which they were published. “The text on the spine, cover or title page, when highlighted, becomes a poignant story about time, place and meaning.”
This is Andrew Uchin’s first solo show at dnj Gallery. He earned his MA of Inter-Arts at San Francisco State’s School of Creative Arts, and has exhibited in northern various California. Uchin has lectured throughout the United States on books and photography, while being published concurrently. He lives and works in Pasadena.
dnj Gallery is located at 2419 Michigan Ave., Santa Monica, CA
EXHIBITION: Out of Con(text)
Gallery II: Andrew Uchin
SHOW DATES: July 23- September 3, 2011
RECEPTION: Saturday, July 23, 5-7pm
GALLERY HOURS: Tuesday – Saturday, 10 am -6 pm
PHONE: (310) 315-3551
By Jim McKinniss