Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Off To NYPH '09...

I'm heading down to New York tomorrow for the NYPH '09 festivities. In light of this, blogging will be put on hold for a couple of days. I will resume early next week.

For anyone still on the fence about whether to go, here is a quick rundown of some exhibitions and panel discussions.

All Over The Place!
Curated by William A. Ewing

Features the work of historical figures Ernst Haas, Jacob Holdt, Edward Steichen, and contemporary photographers Manolis Baboussis, Matthieu Gafsou, Oliver Godow, Tiina Itkonen, Anna Lehmann-Brauns, Juraj Lipscher, Virginie Otth, Philipp Schaerer, Joni Sternbach, Robert Walker, and Patrick Weidmann. What could possibly unite Edward Steichen’s seminal, if controversial exhibition, The Family of Man, with Jacob Holdt’s unblinking, unsparing view of American life a decade or two later? What are the lessons to be learned from unearthing early Ernst Haas color imagery? What do Haas, Holdt, and Steichen have to do with younger talents on our roster?

The more experience William A. Ewing accumulates as a curator, the more he is astonished to see the narrowness of our shared focus. So much fine work slips through our fingers; so much of the past remains unexplored; so much of what is banal today absorbs our attention. Yet here and there discoveries are made, surprising work from the past is uncovered, new visions emerge, simplistic ideas overturned. All over the place! has, therefore, two meanings: it aims to celebrate photography’s unruly nature, its rich diversity, and its refusal to fit into neat categories; it is also intended to remind people of the fact that fabulous work can come out of the Arctic as easily as it can come out of metropolitan chaos. Furthermore, the title applies to the dimension of time; “new discoveries” aren’t always of contemporary work.

Gay Men Play
Curated by Chris Boot

In his exhibition and a series of related panel discussions, Boot explores the theme Gay Men Play — the contemporary photographic representation of gay sex and gay recreational sexual identities. In an article to be published in the forthcoming summer 2009 issue of Aperture magazine, Boot argues, “The use of photography by gay men early in the 20th century is among the most interesting aspects of the phenomenon of photography now,” and his exhibition mixes the work of established photographers and artists with that of non-professional photographers. The main exhibition feature is a series of portraits by Stefan Ruiz of gay men geared up for play, shot during gay party weekends, in a mobile studio on the streets of San Francisco and Berlin. The exhibition also features an installation of photographs collected from gay networking websites by Christopher Clary, with projects by another 10 photographers shown on digital screens.

I Don’t Really Know What Kind Of Girl I Am
Curated by Judy Quon

In her exhibition I don’t really know what kind of girl I am, Jody Quon has assembled a gallery of portraits that expose, depict, and assemble the essence, features, and virtues of women as subjects. The show will feature the work of Edith Maybin, Valérie Belin, Rene & Radka, Grant Worth, Mondongo, Hank Willis Thomas, Katy Grannan, Sam Samore, Carlos Ranc, and David Sherry.

Home For Good
Curated by Jon Levy

Home For Good, the exhibition curated by Jon Levy and Foto8, celebrates photography’s ability to communicate, describe, and explain, while also remaining open to interpretation. The show features the work of Lorraine Grupe, Tim Hetherington, Simon Roberts, Chris Killip, Venetia Dearden, Seba Kurtis, Louie Palu, Bruno Stevens, Adam Nadel, and David Gray. The basic premise for Home For Good is, as the title suggests, home, the place we receive and experience much of our everyday photography. Newspapers, magazines, slideshows, and scrapbooks; these are the points of reference for the works we have chosen to exhibit. The title Home For Good also suggests its inverse, the world outside—presented here as work concerning international conflict. The exhibition explores the ways that photographs have been, and continue to be, used to connect people with issues, emotions, and events. The photographers chosen to represent this theme and the formats they have employed—from keepsakes in a family photo album to a modern, multimedia short film—embody the wide range of tools and ideas photography uses in its dual purpose of communicating public fact and personal feeling.

“Blogging and The Photography Community” - May 15th, 2009 at 11am

Joined by Jorg Colberg, this panel will include Cara Philips, Laurel Ptak, Andrew Hetherington and Brian Ulrich.

Note from Frank Evers - This panel promises an open-ended discussion on the current state of the blogging and the photography community, or what I lamely call the “photosphere”. If you think that you have any clue as to what is actually going on in photography today, then you will be hogging a seat from the early morn.
Audience participation is expected, so bring your brain.

Aperture Presents “Artist-Publisher: Mass Produced for Mass Dissemination” - Thursday, May 14, 2009 @ 5:00 pm

The panel discussion series, Aperture Presents, premiers with acclaimed NYPH08 curator and Aperture publisher, Lesley A. Martin, moderating the discussion ”Artist-Publisher: Mass Produced for Mass Dissemination”. Participants will include Jason Fulford and Leanne Shapton (J&L Books); Richard Renaldi (Charles Lane Press); and others to be announced.