Photography Submissions Due February 22 To Light Work
Too Hard to Keep (Syracuse) is a communal archival installation for photographs, photo-objects, and digital files to exist when they are too difficult to destroy yet remain too hard or painful to hold on to.
Submissions will be accepted by February 22, 2013 for the exhibition that runs April 4 through May 31, 2013
The idea for the show started in 2010 by Chicago-based artist Jason Lazarus. He initiated a growing archive of photos deemed “too hard to keep.” T.H.T.K. (Too Hard to Keep).
Participants have the option to show the photographs shown freely with other photos in the archive, or to have them displayed face down, which adds a charged significance to each object.
Site-specific installations will develop out of this expanding collection. With T.H.T.K. (Syracuse) Jason Lazarus will shares part of the larger archive alongside anonymous local submissions in a carefully considered installation at the Light Work gallery in Upstate New York.
The exhibition will be on view April 4 – May 31, 2013. A reception will be held April 4 from 5-7 pm, with a gallery talk from the artist at 5pm.
How to Submit Photographs to T.H.T.K. (Syracuse)
To be considered for exhibition or publication, submissions arrive at Light Work or should be dropped by Friday, February 22.
Photographic prints or objects may be mailed in an envelope to:
Light Work ATTN: Too Hard to Keep 316 Waverly Ave. Syracuse, NY, 13244.
Drop off photographs anonymously in the drop box located at Light Work in Syracuse, New York, prior to and during the exhibition.
Fine art photograph made in Beijing, China, during a very, very cold evening at twilight as the sun just set in a park. Taken with a tripod, with an exposure of probably several seconds (Steve Giovinco).
The evening’s chill did not dissuade hard-core fine art photography enthusiasts from making the frigid Chelsea trek. First stop was Yossi Milo and American architectural photographer Ezra Stoller. What is most striking about many of the black and white vintage photographs is seeing what American once was and once did: this America was filled with machines. The post war photographs describe type-writer sized adding apparatus lined on conveyor belts; red and green ribbons of Life Savers on the assembly-line; printing presses and other photo-mechanical processes; a room-sized early IBM computer.
Michael Benson, a writer, photographer and filmmaker, sifted through 50,000 images of the enormous NASA archives. Some images Benson used date from the 1970s, although he started this body of work in 1995.
Zwelethu Mthethwa at Jack Shainman Gallery
Zwelethu Mthethwa presented three projects at Jack Shainman Gallery. The Brave Ones depict photographs of young church devotees who’s custom is for young men to wear pleated skirts, bowties and decorative headwear; Hope Chest shows married women next to their furniture gift—the last one they are likely to receive from their family; and, most interesting, are the bare hostel room interiors of migrant workers of Johannesburg and Durban of The End of an Era. Here, the two are spectacular large color photographs in the far back room that have a wash of red/pink and yellow that is overwhelming and moving.
Two highlights were Patricia Piccinni’s stunningly odd merging of the hyper real and the unreal sculpture, “Eulogy,” and British painter Justin Mortimer’s large chilling photo-based dark painting—a highlight of the evening.
Amy Stein and Stacy Arezou Mehrfar teamed together for the show, “Tall Poppy Syndrome.” The photographs, created in Australia’s New South Wales during a month long trip in 2010, attempt to depict the supposed egalitarian approach to life Down Under, and contain a range of image types–landscape, portrait, et. all—and a variety of presentations—some prints were displayed in salon-style groupings, some as small framed prints, some intermingled with a several larger pieces.
2012 in fine art photography had many highlights. Here are some picks from the last year.
Holy Motors and Contemporary Fine Art Photography
Although a film, Holy Motors explores many contemporary fine art photography concepts prevalent today. The film seems to ask: are we all just playing a role? Much of this exuberant and indescribable mash-up of a film, directed by Leos Carax, not only references other film genres, but also covers similar conceptual territory as Cindy Sherman, Jeff Wall and Greg Crewdson.
Hurricane Sandy Hits and Devastates New York Photography/Art World
Hurricane Sandy hit the New York art/photography world with a wallop towards the end of 2012. Weeks and months after Sandy hit Chelsea, galleries were decimated and some will never reopen.
Many galleries abutted the flood zone and have saw water enter their spaces. Galleries such as David Zwirner, Gagosian, CRG, Fredericks & Freiser and others felt the direct impact.
Luc Sante Lecture at SVA
One of the best talks on photography in 2012 was the photographic explorations of the past conducted by Luc Sante at SVA.
Luc Sante’s most interesting discussion was on crime photography. He centered on unknown New York crime photographers and remarkably did not include Weegee the Famous. He showed many photographs of both interiors and exteriors, remarkable only for their lack of drama or compelling visual elements. It was this very subject of banality that lead one to conclude that this could only be a crime scene, and this was chilling.
Eliot Porter at MoMA
One oddly compelling show were the previously little-seen photographs of birds by Eliot Porter at MoMA. The selection, organized by contemporary artist Trisha Donnelly, was a strange grouping of birds in nests, taken in the 1940-1950s.
Strangely, it seems these were all taken without Eliot Porter actually seeing what he photographed. The images must have been at low light or at night and required flash. Also, being so close to the subject–the lenses didnt seem to be extremely long telephone ones–seems impossible without disturbing the feeding, resting, etc. of the birds. So, remarkably, they must be taken intuitively.
Arm Chair Photographer: Doug Rickard
A compelling gallery show was Doug Rickard’s photographs at Yossi Milo Gallery. Although several photographs of Rickard’s were exhibited at MoMA the previous year, this show presented a fuller context, which served them well. Here Doug Rickard didn’t take the photographs in a traditional way. Rather, he observed them from Google Street View, and reprinted them. As a result, the highly blurry and sometimes extremely pixilated photographs have a appearance of a realist daydream. There is something about the act of looking–not from the real street but from Street View–that makes these photographs powerful.
Faking It: Manipulated Photography Before Photoshop at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
Early 2012 brought Adobe’s Photoshop CS6, and with it many, many changes for fine art photographers. Some included an interface change, greatly improved performance, new ACR controls, video editing support, and much more.
Pinterest: A Place for Photography
If you’ve not already heard, one of the fastest growing site is Pinterest. Its focus is on images and is a great place for photography and browsing images at a glance. Most of the images fall within the usual range but some include Duane Michaels, Bill Brandt and others.
The End of Kodak
Kodak filed for bankruptcy in 2012 and sold most of its business as the once mighty photography giant slowly fades.
New York Foundation for the Arts Program Officer, Christa Blatchford, conducting a Work Sample Seminar at Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center in Buffalo, NY.
There are some interesting and helpful tidbits for applying for the NYFA grant.
Fine art photography was on view in Chelsea as the 2013 season starts (many are happy to see 2012 go; lingering remnants of Hurricane Sandy remain in the form of still-dark galleries).
Sabine Hornig at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery
Starting at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery’s main floor gallery are photo sculptural installations and traditional photographic prints by German artist Sabine Hornig. Although she presented several pieces using transparent images mounted on Perspex and resembling a half open room which is experienced by walking around the multiple layered images, the traditionally printed and framed photographs seemed more to my liking. These were of shop and store windows, doors, and views within views, photos within photos.
Dirk Stewen at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery
Upstairs at Tanya Bonakdar are more photographs, and are by Dirk Stewen. Here, similar to the work downstairs, are sculpturally-based work using photographs, photographs with collage and some nearly “straight” photographs.
Several black and white images of a man turned holding a subway poll and taped or collaged with another image in the smaller gallery were oddly compelling, and were the most simple and effective.
Charlotte Dumas Anima at Julie Saul Gallery
Next: Charlotte Dumas: Anima at Julie Saul Gallery. Here, are mysterious and emotive images of horses. In “repose”, resting and in their stalls are large 44 7/8 x 59 7/8” (edition of three; smaller size available) portraits of the majestic burial horses of Arlington National Cemetery. They are shot using natural light. From afar, they look photographic; on closer inspection (“pixel-peaking”) the prints are quite noisy—the digital equivalent to grain—and this can be distracting, at least to me (full disclosure: I’ve made many high-noise images, so I wont begrudge a fellow artist creative license to print as they see fit).