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JULY 2014

developments in photography

BETA developments in photography ISSUE 10 editor: Jeff Moorfoot design: Penelope Anne contact: beta@ballaratfoto.org web: beta.org.au All content in this magazine is Š 2014 of the Ballarat International Foto Biennale and participating artists, and may not be reproduced without the express written permission of the BIFB. Inc save for fair dealing for the purposes of research, study, criticism, review, reporting news. All other rights are reserved.

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Alec Dawson






Welcome to this, our tenth issue of BETA developments in photography. In this edition we bring you another five portfolios that explore the length and breadth of the photographic idiom. Each body of work, in it’s own way, takes us well beyond the mere representation of object or of circumstance. To me, 10 is the ‘thinking man’s’ edition of BETA, presenting images that allow the viewer to drill down well below the surface in the search for meaning. With each viewing of the portfolios in 10, my reading of the images develops new insights My interpretation of each body of work may have been furtherest from the minds of their creators, but they take me on my own personal journey, and isn’t that the element that makes art so interesting? We present for your enjoyment in this issue, bodies of work by three artists whom I had the pleasure of viewing at ‘The Meeting Place’ portfolio reviews at FotoFest, Houston earlier this year. We lead off with a split folio by Christa Blackwood featuring her trimonoprint

photogravure landscapes and wet plate collodion portraits, bound together by a ubiquitous ‘red dot’ – a red dot that can be taken as a rich metaphor for just about anything you care to put your mind to. Also from Fotofest we bring the portfolio of Juliette Conroy and her series ‘Disentergration’ basically, dust - a lyrical representation of the final destination for us all – ashes to ashes, dust to dust! ……. And lastly in this trio of Houston discoveries we present an intriguing body of work by French couple Françoise and Daniel Cartier with a photographic concept well and truly out of left field. These are not photographs. They are sheets of photographic paper, collected by the couple, and in most cases, exhibited without fixation so that the light sensitive halides react with the environment that manifest the paper with Rothko-esque fields of colour. Our home grown contributors in 10 are Mexican born, but Sydney based Alec Dawson – who presents ‘Nobody claps anymore’ a suite of staged film noir

pictures, both complex and unnerving in a body of work influenced by much lauded American photographer Gregory Crewdson. Dawson’s nocturnal tableaux weave a rich tapestry of sadness, yearning and despair. Alec exhibited as part of this year’s Head On Festival in Sydney, where I was privileged to have a special viewing of the show in the company of the artist himself. And we close our tenth issue of BETA developments in photography with John Bodin, who presents a selection of images from his book ‘Shrouded’. I am yet to decide if shrouded is intended as a homage to Christo, or a reflection on our societal obsession with packaging, but the end result is a veritable strip tease in reverse. ……..It makes you think, doesn’t it! For those of you who are new readers of BETA developments in photography, you can view issues 01 to 09 at the following link > issuu.com/ballarat_foto_biennale

Apologies to Kevin Horan, who was referred to as Keith Horan in his featured goat portraits ‘Chattel’ in 09 BETA developments in photography. I’ve checked with his mum, and he definitely is Kevin and not Keith. Not exactly sure how it happened, but it did and I am truly sorry for the mistake. ……..so who’s a silly goat now!

Jeff Moorfoot Creative Director Ballarat International Foto Biennale

Naked Lady A Dot Red


Naked Lady : A Dot Red and The Boys of Collodion, explores new perspectives on traditional genres and images found in landscape and portrait photography. By combining historical photographic techniques with more contemporary conceptual strategies, these works shift the focus of attention, and enable a reconsideration of its classical subjects.






Naked Lady : A Dot Red Christa Blackwood’s work employs both historic and modern photographic techniques to critique and give a contemporary and feminist voice to her photography. Exploring the idea of “the figure” with a red dot, back grounded by historical landscape photographs, tradition and contemporary theory mingle, merge and clash. These traditional landscapes - historically photographed by men - act as metaphor for a male view, and through this the feminine metaphor of the “red dot” emerges and creates a visual enigma which deliberately defies this tradition.

Often and traditionally portrayed as nudes, the female body in photographs stands in stark contrast to the portrayal of men - often the ones taking the portraits - famous male photographers such a Weston, Steiglitz, Man Ray, etc, who commonly employed “the male gaze” approach. A final, distressing statement is made in the last photo of theseries, the red dot itself, with an anonymous female figure, divided. W. Tanner Young Filter Photo


















The Boys of Collodion The young bare-chested men in this series of portraits, with their freeflowng dark hair and their wide-opened stares, seem to harken back to the first decades of photography, as much as having been pulled from the local skateboard park. Glued to whatever it is that is confronting them head-on, their fixated gazes might betray the name of the place that they mythically hail from: Collodion, from the Greek kollōdēs, meaning “gluelike.”Looking as though they have become suddenly entranced by the song of the sirens, or nearly petrified by the head of the gorgon, the boys of collodion are our modern day kouroi. Stripped of colour except for a single red badge — medal and scar — they are glued and unglued at once. John Paul Ricco











Christa Blackwood is a photo, text and installation artist working with themes related to identity, history, and popular culture. Her visual voice was developed while a student at New York University, when she began producing street instal lation art such as Butcherknives (1991), a work that addressed issues of sexual violence. A chilling juxtaposition of billboard-like close-ups and text from poet Michelle Kotler, Butcherknives, was plastered all over the streets of lower Manhattan on the evening that the William Kennedy Smith verdict was announced. The poster’s timely and provocative appearance resulted in heightened critical attention for Blackwood, including an invitation to join the Women’s Action Coalition (WAC) from renowned artists and scholars, Kiki Smith and Lucy Lippard.

Her dream-like sequences and texts employ multiple techniques and methods, fusing traditional, historical and alternative processes with contemporary practices such as iPhone image-making and street installations. Blackwood received her MA in Studio Art from New York University and BA in Classics from The University of Oklahoma. Her work has been featured in several publications including The New York Times, NYQ, New York Newsday, The Village Voice and The Chicago Sun Times. She has exhibited in galleries and museums throughout the U.S. And abroad. The dot red series has been exhibited in Austin, TX this winter, 2014, and will be exhibited at The Candela Gallery in Richmond, VA and wall space gallery in Santa Barbara, CA this fall. Blackwood is currently based in Austin, Texas. website: christablackwood.com






Dust is the liminal matter of our daily lives, a matter we attempt to hide or avoid. Unavoidable, it is a condition of our future and our past. As Genesis 3:19 states “for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.” We create dust because we are.   Dust is implicit in our bodies, movement and existence.  We are constantly unconsciously shedding parts of ourselves creating both a physical and emotional past we do not want to recognize, one we try to brush away, yet is always with us.  We leave a trail of personal physical matter which mixes in corners and on windowsills with others who have passed through our province. In its most banal form it is matter we do not want to recognize, like a part of ourselves we want to avoid. And in its essence it is a part of our actuality we prefer to leave unspoken. Over a number of years Juliette photoraphed the dust that had settled on her windowsills, contemplating its emotional corporality outside of the physicality.   From the microscopic parts that make up these subtle hills and valleys, the individual fragments of a disintegrating world, to the immense dust rivers which transport the sands of the African desert to the east coast of the United States, these images reflect the idea that from the minutia of ourselves comes the vastness of our singular and collective existence.  



















Photographer Juliette Conroy was born in London, England. As a teenager she relocated to Australia where she studied art and design at the West Australian Institute of Technology. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. As an artist Juliette, through selective focus, indistinct images and cropping, uses the camera not to faithfully record the subject, but rather to create a distortion, an organic wave of shape and color, resulting in an image that is as much about feeling as seeing. Juliette’s work has been shown at art fairs, galleries and museums throughout the United States, including The San Diego Art Institute, Governors Island Art Fair and Safe-T-Gallery, Brooklyn. Her work has been selected by GLAAD for its annual Art Auction and by Architectural Digest for their 2006 Greenroom at the Emmy’s. Juliette’s work is in a number of private and corporate collections. website: julietteconroy.com


The chronic evolution of our lives can generate emotional cancers. In our youth, these cancers are small and neoplastic. For some of us, these small nuisances grow into oppressive and paralyzing monsters. Nobody Claps Anymore is my response to my own emotional cancers: regret, isolation, anxiety, and depression. It is my de facto art therapy. My photographic works are about internal emotional dramas which often reveal themselves in quiet solitary moments in people’s homes. I use cinematic lighting to dramatise these moments. The series’ title, Nobody Claps Anymore, was inspired by an emotional realization that I experienced when my plane landed in Melbourne. Hundreds of tons of metal, carrying hundreds of passengers, silently flared momentarily before the tires collided with the runway. The nose of the plane heaved forward. The reverse thrusters roared and rapidly decelerated the plane. As the plane turned off the runway onto the taxi-way the individual joints in the pavement were perceptible as the plane lumbered to the gate. Eventually the plane parked and I heard the sounds of belt buckles, zippers, and the rustling of bags. It all happened in silence. Not a word uttered. No applause. The audience had forgotten to clap.


nobody claps anymore ALEC DAWSON 47




















Alec Dawson is a Sydney based, Mexican-American artist who has been a fine art photographer since 2007. Alec was born in Mexico City in 1975 and has lived in the United States of America, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Turkey, and Australia. He studied and received a degree in Civil Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley and has worked as a consulting engineer in that field

since then. He has no formal training in the arts and is almost entirely an auto-didact on the subject of photography. Alec enjoys exhibiting his photographic art on the internet as well as local exhibitions as well as giving lectures on the subject on the art nude to photographic societies website: alecdawson.net


Wait and See F&D CARTIER


Wait and See is a site-specific photographic installation The passing of time, a chromatic evolution of photographic papers *The absolute photography, the not taken images

“…Cette photographie absolue c’est peut-être celle qui ne se prend pas, qui ne consacre rien de visible. Elle n’existe pas mais elle aurait pu exister. Elle a été omise, elle a été oubliée d’être prise, …” Marguerite Duras La vie matérielle

For each iteration of this project, artists Françoise and Daniel Cartier use a variety of their collected photosensitive papers -ranging from 1880 to 1990-, that have never been exposed before to light, to create an original composition within a particular exhibition space. Once the installation is unveiled, the natural and artificial light in the room alters the colors of the papers, with the intensity and duration of light exposure determining the gradation of hues and leaving behind visible patterns. Through this more abstract approach to photography, f&d cartier draw attention to the to the durational nature of the medium and the story that light can tell outside of the camera.


18 M. Biot, Usine à Bel-Air Mâcon Papier Mat Velouté A noircissement direct 13 x 18 cm Date de péremptition non speécifiée, ca. 1980-1900 Unique / exposé septembre 2011


76 Sears, Roebuck & Co., Chicago DARKO Developing papers Medium Emulsion Surface Velvet Post Cards Expiration Date Feb. 15, 1919 Unique / exposed September 2011

27 Agfa Ansco Binghamton New York CONVIRA MEDIUM B Glossy, single weight, code 3 5 x 7 inches Expired Sept. 1937 Unique / exposed to light September 2011


Kodak Made in Great Britain VELOX VG-3 Glossy, Vigorous 61/2 x 43/4 Inches Exiration date not mentioned, late 1930s Unique / Exposed to light 2013


80 Leto Photo Materials Company Ltd., London, Engl. Seltona Collodion Self-Toning Paper, containing gold, matt 4 x 5 inches Exiration date not mentioned, ca 1900’s Unique / Exposed to light 2013


30 Lumière Paris/Lyon LUGDA UV11 Papier Gaslight Blanc brillant, force papier, dur 7 x 11, 5 cm Date de péremption inconnue, env. 1920 Unipues / exposés en septembre 2011


14 Lainer VINDO Weich, Postka Verfallu Unikat

& Hrdliczka Wien OBROM BW 101 , weiss, glänzend, Karton arten ungs Datim nicht vermerkt, ca. 1931 / Belichtet September 2011




164 Lumiére & Jougla, Paris CITRATE Rose mat Date de péremption non spécifiée, exposé 2013 61/2 x 9 cm / unique


168 LUMIERE & JOUGLA, Paris CITRATE 17 Papier pensée lilas brillant Noircissement direct Date de péremption no speécifiée, exposé en 2013 9 x 12 / unique

99 Gevaert Made in Belgium Citrate Print Out Proof Paper White, Glossy 2.5 x 3.5 in. Exposed 2013 Unique


19 M. Biot, Usine à Bel-Air, Mâcon Papier Mat Velouté A noircissement direct Supports artistiques - Crème lisse / gros grain Format 13 x 18 Date de péremption non spécifiée, ca 1980-1900 / Unique Exposé á la lumière en 2012


260 E. CRUMIERE, Paris LE DRAGON AUTO - VIGOR Papier auto-vireur Tirage à la lumière du jour Format 13 x 18 cm Date péreption pas indiquée, ca 1900 ? Unique Exposé á la lumière en 2012


257 Dr. AK. W TANNEN CELLOIDIN PAPIER glänzend Farbe Pensée 9 x 12 cm Verfallungs Datum nicht vermerkt, ca. 1980 Unikat / Belichtet 2012


257 Dr. AK. W TANNEN CELLOIDIN PAPIER glänzend Farbe Pensée 9 x 12 cm Verfallungs Datum nicht vermerkt, ca. 1980 Unikat / Belichtet 2012


252 ELLIOTT & SONS, Ltd. Barnet, England BROMIDE CARD GASLIGHT Cream smooth soft Postcards Exp. date not specified, ca 1906 Unique / Exposed to light 2013


83 Wellington & Ward Ltd., Elstree, England WELLINGTON G.L.P - GASLIGHT PAPER Normal Glossy 45 x 107 mm Exp. date not specified, ca 1910-1920 Unique / Exposed 2013

244 ILFORD LIMIST ILFORD PLAST Cream Grained 3/12 x 51/2 inc. Exp date not sp Unique / Expos

TED ILFORD, LONDON TIKA T2K d Half Matt Normal Double Weight . 9 x 14 cms. pecified, ca. 1950 sed 2013

267 KODAK MADE IN ENGLAND FINISHER BROMIDE BF2 Medium 81/2 x 61/2 inches / test / cutted paper Expiration date not mentioned, ca. 1950 Unique / Exposed 2013



Since 1995, Swiss artists Francoise and Daniel Cartier have worked collaboratively as f&d cartier to produce photographic works predominantly without the use of a camera. They have exhibited their work extensively in their native Switzerland as well as internati onally in Argentina, Austria, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Macedonia, Mexico, the United Kingdom and USA. Their work is currently housed in the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Portland Museum of Art, Oregon USA; Musée de L’EIysée in Lausanne, Switzerland; Museet for Fotokunst in Odense, Denmark; Kunstsammlung F. Hoffman-LaRoche AG in Basel, Switzerland; and the Museum of Modern Art of Rio de Janerio, Brazil. Following the publication of their monograph Roses (Niggli, 2006), f&d cartier released their newest book, Wait and See (Ffotogallery, 2013) in conjunction with their recent solo exhibition at Ffotogallery in Wales. website: fdcartier.ch




In this series I attempt to explore the mystery of the veil. In doing so I discovered the sculptural beauty of these idle vehicles. It’s as though they have withdrawn into hibernation, semi retired from active duty, preserved for later use… ‘Shrouded’ sheds new light in a whimsical way about the value we place upon our possessions, and the protection we extend to them.





















John Bodin [BA photog RMIT] Double Master status from the Australian Institute of Professional Photography [AIPP M.phot II] His work is principally concerned with the utility of the landscape within a semi – abstracted interpretation. Bodin’s study in philosophy and meditation serve as a visual source of reflection and is integral to his image making. He has travelled extensively and in 2003 served a short residency at New Delhi India and more locally has been involved in three solo shows in 2006, 2009 and 2011 and twelve group exhibitions over the last six years. He was a finalist in the 2005 New Social Commentaries Acquisitive Prize and the acclaimed Prometheus Visual Art Award in 2007. He was collected by ArtBank in 2011 and a finalist in the Sunshine Coast Art prize 2D in 2012. Public acquisitions include The City of Yarra (Melbourne) and the Muswellbrook Regional Art Gallery NSW. He is represented in Melbourne by Anita Traverso Gallery and is collected privately in Australia and New Zealand. website: bodin.com.au


Profile for BETA developments in photography

Beta issue 10  

BETA 10 presents folios by Christa Blackwood, Juliette Conroy, Alec Dawson, F & D Cartier and John Bodin

Beta issue 10  

BETA 10 presents folios by Christa Blackwood, Juliette Conroy, Alec Dawson, F & D Cartier and John Bodin