This text and the accompanying photos are taken from Judith B. Herman’s article of January 29, 2013 that appears in Slate.com.
All photos are copyright by Aline Smithson.
Aline Smithson loves garage sales. When a single weekend of scavenging yielded a print of the famous 19th-century painting by James McNeill Whistler’s “Arrangement in Grey and Black Portrait of the Artist’s Mother,” a leopard coat and hat, a 1950s cat painting, and a chair just like the one in Whistler’s painting, something clicked. Her years of art education, fashion editing, and honing her darkroom skills, plus her sense of nostalgia, love of family, and wacky sense of humor all came together to produce what Smithson calls “the series that put me on the map.”
Over a period of two years, her mother, who was in her mid-80s, sat erect in the “Whistler chair,” presenting her left profile and a perfect deadpan expression in front of Smithson’s lime green garage door for 20 versions of “Arrangement in Green and Black, Portraits of the Photographer’s Mother.” Instead of Anna Whistler’s voluminous black Victorian dress and white lace cap, Katrine Kleihauer Smithson is decked out in get-ups such as a grass skirt and a safari suit. Smithson scoured thrift stores and eBay for costumes and bad paintings with matching themes.
By Jim McKinniss
I spend a good amount of time looking at photographs whether in books, museums, galleries or on-line. So naturally I’m frequently finding photos that cause me to take a closer look at the photographer’s work.
The photos above were created by some of the photographers I know from my on-line journey through the photo world. I like their work and since I write this blog I’m showing it to you.
By Jim McKinniss
M+B is pleased to present Jessica Eaton’s first Los Angeles exhibition, Polytopes. Eaton’s latest work views the world through the capabilities of photography using a wide array of experimental, analogue-based photographic techniques such as color separation filtration, additive color theory, multiple exposures, motion blur, in-camera masking, cross polarization and lighting techniques. Building on her highly reviewed series Cubes for Albers and LeWitt (cfaal) with Polytopes Eaton develops more configurations from repeated fragments, constructing sculptural works on sheets of large format film. The haunting, luminescent images bloom and grow before the viewer, the result of layered time and additive color theory. Polytopes runs from November 3, 2012 through January 5, 2013, with an opening reception for the artist on Saturday, November 3 from 6 to 8 pm.
Eaton shapes her latest artistic output “in camera” through multiple exposures and the use of different colored filters. In two new works, cfaal 276 and cfaal 279 the tactile, present nature of the work is exemplified through lush details of textured wood grain and large brush strokes radiantly depicted under added colors, their reflections offering up an engaging dimensionality to the work. Bold, vibrant angels energetically cut across space in Eaton’s Tri/Colour/Angles work, the moment of potential, surprise and experimentation revealed at their aligning points. The use of the artist’s studio as laboratory further expands in Eaton’s Interpolation Dramatizations and RGB Weaves – the artist’s analogue take on a digital solution. Through multiple exposures Eaton uses blur and stepped exposures to symbolize the bicubic smoother or Nearest Neighbor – interpolations algorithms used by imaging softwares such as Photoshop. Eaton’s process and the fascinating result is a conversation with the world, navigating the forces of time and space the viewer is presented with a striking sense of possibility.
Jessica Eaton (b. 1977, Regina, Saskatchewan) holds a BFA in photography from the Emily Carr Institute in Vancouver, British Columbia. Her work focuses on the possibilities of the medium and is often experimental in nature. Jessica has been the recipient of the Grand Prix du Jury for the Hyères Fashion and Photography Festival 2012, Foam International Photography Magazine Talent Call 2012, the Bright Spark Award for the Magenta Foundation Flash Forward Emerging Photographers from the UK, Canada and USA 2011, “Hey, Hot Shot”, Jen Bekman Gallery, 2010 and was awarded a Canada Council for the Arts research and creation grant 2011. Eaton’s photographs have been published in numerous publications including Foam, Border Crossings, The British Journal of Photography (cover March 2012), ARTnews (cover image March 2011), BlackFlash, Colour Magazine, Pyramid Power, Hunter and Cook and Lay Flat 02: Meta. Jessica Eaton lives and works in Montréal. This is her first solo exhibition at M+B.
For more info, please contact Alexandra Wetzel at M+B at (310) 550-0050 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
M+B Gallery is located at 612 North Almont Drive, Los Angeles, California 90069
This exhibition runs through December 22, 2012
By Jim McKinniss
dnj Gallery is pleased to announce its upcoming exhibitions by gallery artists Dylan Vitone and Richard Gilles. The main gallery will feature “Leisure” by Vitone. Gallery II will display “Towers” by Gilles. These are both artists’ third solo exhibitions at dnj Gallery.
“Leisure” includes work from Vitone’s “Yellowstone” and “Rutland” projects. In “Yellowstone,” Vitone investigates modern society’s interaction with nature, capturing the throngs of tourists who flock to the historic park. In contrast, in the “Rutland” project, Vitone explores less mainstream pursuits at Skatopia in southern Ohio. Photographing the skate enthusiasts who camp there, Vitone looks beyond the tough exterior of youth counterculture to find an underlying beauty and naïveté. Together, the projects form a dialogue about the role of leisure in American society.
As with his earlier series, Vitone stitches together several images to create a nearly 360-degree view, which, as he states, “allows [him] to show simultaneously details and relationships at multiple spacial and perceptual levels….” “Working in the tradition of street photographers and social anthropologists such as Milton Rogovin and Bruce Davidson, Vitone makes extended portraits of communities through intimate observations of their everyday rituals.” (Leah Ollman, Los Angeles Times, 10-24-08).
Vitone is an Associate Professor in the School of Design at Carnegie Mellon University. He holds a B.A. in Photo-communications from St. Edwards University and an M.F.A. in Photography from the Massachusetts College of Art. His work has been featured in solo and group exhibitions throughout the country and is in the permanent collections of many museums, including the George Eastman House, Rochester, New York and the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C.
Gilles’ “Towers” series in Gallery II captures pairs of vertical structures set against stark panoramas with ample skies and low horizons. He views the towers as “sentries standing watch over the landscape” and, with Google Maps to help him scout locations across the United States (including many in California and Nevada), is meticulous about adhering to the rigid formula of pairs. “Towers” is a continuation of Gilles’ ongoing exploration of the unnoticed and overlooked, and is an invitation to consider both the condition of the terrain and the symbolism of the structures occupying it.
Gilles earned his B.A. in Fine Arts from San Francisco State University. His work has been exhibited in California and throughout the country and is in the collections of the Southeast Museum of Photography, Daytona Beach, Florida and the University of California, Davis, Richard L. Nelson Gallery & Fine Arts Collection, Davis, California.
SHOW DATES: January 12 – February 23, 2013
RECEPTION: Saturday, January 12, 6 – 8 pm
GALLERY HOURS: Tuesday – Saturday, 11 am – 6 pm
dnj Gallery 2525 michigan avenue, suite J1, santa monica, ca 90404 www.dnjgallery.net
For more information or images, please contact Cambra Sklarz at (310) 315-3551 or email@example.com.
By Jim McKinniss
On December 1, 2012, Los Angeles Art Association (LAAA) will present the 2012 Open Show, LAAA’s signature survey exhibition of the very best emerging contemporary art. The 2012 Open Show is juried by Rebecca Morse, Associate Curator, the Museum of Contemporary Art (MoCA).
Distinct by design, LAAA’s annual Open Show has developed into one of the most potent survey exhibitions of emerging art.
The opening reception is from 6 to 9pm on December 1, 2012 and runs through January 4, 2013 at LAAA’s Gallery 825.
Featured artists include:
Ted Andersen, Robert Boyd, Gary Frederick Brown, Ellen Cantor, Philippe Chambon, Charles Christopher, Joy
Curtis, Pam Dixon, Jeanne Dunn, Frances Elson, Jeanie Frias, Tina Frugoli, Josh Geyer, Matthew Miles Grayson,
Michael Griesgraber, Chong Hahn, Cindy Jackson, Caroline P.M. Jones, Motoko Kamada, Niku Kashef, Susan T.
Kurland, Sandra E. Lauterbach, Echo Lew, Heather J. Lowe, Matthew Marchand, Luigia Martelloni, Avery Mazor,
Crystal Michaelson, Rodney Millar, Tanya Nolan, Joanne Patterson, Karen Pendergrass, Osceola Refetoff, Alain
G. Roger, Joy J. Rotblatt, Larisa Safaryan, Samantha Senack, Cory Sewelson, Kathy B. Shapiro, Karen Sikie, Lisa
C. Soto, Fabrice Spies, Susan Swihant, Jane Szabo, Guillermo Valentin, Sasha vom Dorp, Jenny Wiener, Michael
Reception: 6-9pm, Saturday, December 1, 2012
Location: Gallery 825 – 825 North La Cienega Blvd. Los Angeles 90069
The 2012 Open Show runs through January 4, 2013.
For more information, visit http://www.laaa.org or call 310.652.8272.
By Jim McKinniss
I posted a blog entry about the Mapplethorpe exhibition at the Getty Museum a few days ago. Well, there is a second Mapplethorpe exhibition in Los Angeles at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
The X, Y, and Z Portfolios (published in 1978, 1978, and 1981, respectively) by American photographer Robert Mapplethorpe (1946–1989) summarize Mapplethorpe’s ambitions as a fine-art photographer and contemporary artist, reflecting the tripartite division of his mature work: homosexual sadomasochistic imagery (X); floral still lifes (Y); and nude portraits of African-American men (Z). Mapplethorpe’s work has consistently provoked strong reactions, notably during the so-called Culture Wars of the 1980s. The exhibition is an opportunity to assess Mapplethorpe’s confrontational photographs—with their paradoxical mix of classicizing, austere form and raw, uninhibited content—through three series that defined not only his artistic career, but also a moment in American cultural politics. The exhibition, together with the Getty Museum’s concurrent In Focus: Robert Mapplethorpe, celebrates the landmark joint acquisition, in 2011, of the Robert Mapplethorpe Archive by LACMA, the Getty Museum, and the Getty Research Institute.
This exhibition runs October 21, 2012–March 24, 2013
5905 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles CA 90036
Phone: 323 857-6000
By Jim McKinniss
Lest I Forget – Ciociaria copyright Douglas Stockdale
I am very happy to announce that my photograph “Lest I Forget” from my Ciociaria project and photobook, was curated into the December group exhibition at the Orange County Contemporary Center for Art (OCCCA).
The exhibition will have two opening, the first is this Saturday, December 1st, from 6pm to 10 pm and the second will be on January 5th, 2013, also from 6pm to 10 pm.
A very nice way to finish the year! (and of course, to start the new year) My thanks to the curator, Jeff Alu.
BTW, the Ciociaria trade edition as well as Limited Edition book + print are still available from both photo-eye and Ampersand Gallery.
A key figure in late 20th-century photography, Robert Mapplethorpe created work with a distinctive tension between opposites: sacred and profane, mainstream and underground, light and dark. From his early Polaroid portraits, to his fashion photography and later controversial work, Mapplethorpe’s photographs are well-ordered and emotionally restrained, with dangerously chaotic and sensuous elements below.
Born in Queens, New York in 1946, Mapplethorpe studied graphic arts at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn before dropping out in 1969. He met the musician, poet, and artist Patti Smith in 1967 and they lived together as intimate and artistic partners until 1974. In 1972, Mapplethorpe met two influential curators. John McKendry gave him his first Polaroid camera, with which he made self-portraits and portraits of his friends and acquaintances in the art world. Samuel Wagstaff, Jr. later became the artist’s lover and mentor. By the mid-1970s, Mapplethorpe had acquired a medium format camera and began photographing the world of New York’s S and M clubs.
Mapplethorpe refined his style in the early 1980s to create elegant figure studies, delicate floral still lifes, nudes, as well as glamorous celebrity portraits. His preference for simple compositions and a sophisticated use of lighting to articulate subtleties of form distinguished his mature work
His career was successfully championed by pioneering photographs dealer Harry Lunn, who along with Robert Miller and Robert Self, published portfolios of some of the artist’s most challenging work. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Mapplethorpe’s X Portfolio was at the center of an American culture war over whether public monies should be used to underwrite art some deemed obscene or blasphemous.
In 1989, at age forty-two, Mapplethorpe died from complications of AIDS. A year earlier, he had established the foundation that protects his work, promotes his legacy, and supports the causes he believed in, such as art programs and HIV/AIDS prevention and care.
This show runs October 23, 2012–March 24, 2013
By Jim McKinniss
The following text is from Aline Smithson’s Lenscratch.com. You can see the entire blog posting at:
Margaret de Lange lives and works in Norway. She studied photography in Oslo. She has held solo exhibitions among other places in: Tarragona, Brussels, Paris, New York, Stockholm . She was recognized for Best portfolio at the Photo Festival in Arles, France, and with an Honorable mention by the Leica Oskar Barnack Award. She has published two books, Daughters and Surrounded by no one with Trolleybooks (London) .
In her series entitled, Daughters, Margaret presents black and white photographs taken of her two daughters during the summers of their childhood. Though the project began in 1993 and continued through 2002, it wasn’t until both daughters were old enough to grant their permission did de Lange take the step of exhibiting the work.
The images depict the two girls enjoying their summers out of doors, barefoot and often bare-bodied, in a dark and grainy, high-contrast style. In the photographs, the children seem to be a part of the nature around them, with dirt and grass clinging to knees and feet, with hoods of animal skin; they become like the creatures of Scandinavian folklore that, as de Lange explains, “were said to appear at twilight, and were always beautiful, but often evil as well.” And so we view the daughters, captured as they linger in a hazy half-darkness, in that time between day and night and an age between child and adult, exploring, discovering, and experiencing all of those little adventures which amount to growing up. These “creatures” exhibit their initiated ways through various little clues: dead birds hanging from string, bold stares from beneath fury capes. All together, the effect is unabashedly dark and earthy, yet calm and elegantly matter-of-fact.
By Jim McKinniss
Andres Vanegas Canosa or Andy VC as I know him is a Colombian freelance photographer of Spanish decent. I’ve watched Andy’s adventures through his photography for several years now.
The photos above are taken from his series on leprosy. Some of Andy’s other series are about Laos, Columbia, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Morocco. Andy also has a series on 103 year old people.
The danger inherent in Andy’s work means that he is constantly on the move. In my email today he told me that he is having to move very fast and that even owning a laptop puts him in danger. Fortunately in a few days Andy will be in a much safer country.
I admire Andy’s work and want to share some of it with the reader. You can see more of Andy’s images at http://www.andyvc.com/
By Jim McKinniss