Thursday, April 16, 2009

Judgement Day

Panel review day is upon what better topic to research than the jurors themselves?

4/17 edit: unfortunately when I finally came across the blog postings with my jurors' information I found there may actually be two Alice McCabe's in the world, and from the sound of it, the below mentioned will not be meeting with me on Monday. Also George Naan? Doesn't seem to exist in the interworld, mayhaps it's spelled differently? Anywho, I still found the 25 year old Alice McCabe to be an interesting human being, so I'll leave the post up.

Alice McCabe was raised in the Australian outback and moved to London when she was six. Deeply inspired by a show of Arthur Boyd's work at the Australian Embassy in 1996, she realised that she wanted to be a painter.

"The theme of the supposed exotica and quest for paradise intrigues me. My new paintings are not about the people or animals that develop in them. I am still not interested in the human body. The figured scenarios provide a tool by which my thoughts can be played out. My work is about the later egos of everyone and the hidden side of everything."

Monday, April 13, 2009

Joel Sternfeld

'Joel Sternfeld, (b. 1944, New York City), is widely regarded as one of the most influential and important fine-art color photographers in the world, noted for his large-format documentary pictures of the United States and establishing color photorgaphy as a respected artistic medium. He has many works in the permanent collections of the MOMA in New York and the Getty in Los Angeles. He has also "raised" and influenced an entire generation of color photographers including Andreas Gursky who borrows many of Sternfeld's techniques and approaches.'

Review: Oxbow Archive by Joel Sternfeld

Thursday, April 9, 2009


"Friday, April 03, 2009
The Singularity
# posted by jdg @ 11:01 AM

Last week I read in the morning paper about a street here where 60 out of 66 homes were vacant or abandoned on a single block. The reporter called it a "ghost street." Yesterday I found myself in the area. Other than an errant sofa, the street was completely empty, almost peaceful. I took a photo of every house on the north side of one block and then stitched them together. If you were to compare the current international housing crisis to a black hole sucking the equity out of our homes, this one-way street near the northern border of Detroit might just be the singularity: the point where the density of the problem defies anyone's ability to comprehend it. These homes started emptying in 2006.

Click on the image below to load a large file in your browser and then zoom and scroll right. This is the entire north side of the block: every home, every lot. You'll notice the fourth and seventh homes appear occupied. Pay attention to the state of all the other houses rather than the terrible stitching job:

This is just another virtually-abandoned block in Detroit. Eventually the burned houses will collapse; the boarded-up houses will burn. Someday it will all be green.

But this is what it looks like today."

At first glance, this photo montage looked like prime 'wild vs. civilization' material. When I opened the accompanying text, however, I realized it was another devastating 'man vs. economy' (read: family man vs. wild with greed corporate man) struggle. If I have to directly answer how this is effecting my photography, one answer would be that I simply can't afford the cost of film and processing anymore. My job security is dubious at best, and somedays I wonder where my next rent check will come from...a switch to digital was one of my first budget cuts; hey man, times are tight.
But, on another note, I could imagine a conceptual shift in this series or a similar offshoot to include the effects of man on man, in turn, returning himself to a lesser degree of civilization.
At the very least, or at the lowest common denominator, you can see how this blog post is relevant to us all. Scary.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Amanda Friedman

Amanda Friedman is originally from suburban Detroit. After graduating from RIT in 1998 she made the move to Los Angeles. She shoots for a variety of different clients including Time, Newsweek, Travel + Leisure, Budget Travel and London’s Sunday Telegraph. Her photos have been published in American Photography annuals 15, 17 and 18 and she was also a 1999 Surface magazine Avant Guardian.

Interview with Amanda Friedman

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Anderson Gallery Entry

....and rejection

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


"We have all become numbed with photography, there is no denying it, but a chunky camera made almost entirely of plastic has been put on this Earth to save us."

Some history on the Dusseldorf School of Photography:  'A group of students at the Kunstakademie Dusseldorf in the mid 1970s who studied under the influential photographers Bern and Hiller Becher, known for their rigorous devotion to the 1920s German tradition of Neue Sachlichkeit (New Objectivity). The Bechers’ photographs were clear, black and white pictures of industrial archetypes.'

And now:  'Word on the street in Berlin has it that there's a massive reorganization going on in Düsseldorf. Apparently, the students were required to sell all their large-format equipment and to instead use Holga toy cameras. Several people independently told me about this, and over the past few days I have been trying to get this confirmed in Düsseldorf (where I know some people). All I managed to find out is that in all of Düsseldorf, Holgas are completely sold out! Apparently, some students are trying to figure out whether using a "Colour Sampler" camera will do - I guess habits are hard to break?!'

This bit o' street gossip made me chuckle when I thought of how I went from using my holga camera to pushing my digital SLR to produce holga-like images. It was simply a matter of cost and convenience for a high-production portfolio series, I still carry my holga with me when I'm shooting outside the context of a series. I would love to hear more about the push to get rid of large format analog photography equipment (required to sell, really? not just asked to put it aside for a semester?), a plastic camera is surely more convenient, but you can't brag that it's much more cost effective or environmentally friendly. It's also an interesting breach from the historical 'New Objectivity' school of photography because you really can't get more subjective or sentimental than a holga image. Maybe it was just a push to put away the giant cameras and force students to get more intimate with their subjects. Hmm.