#PHOTOGRAPHY The online photography magazine
Inspired by the unreal
“The unreal is more powerful than the real, because nothing is as perfect as you can imagine it, because it’s only intangible ideas, concepts, beliefs, fantasies that last. Stone crumbles, wood rots. People, well, they die. But things as fragile as a thought, a dream, a legend, they can go on and on.”
- Chuck Palahniuk _______________ Thankyou for three years of #PHOTOGRAPHY Magazine.
issue 15 December 2015 Curated by Genea Bailey and Daisy Ware-Jarrett
inside this issue... Ariane de Palacio
PATOS PRO 32
Luca Tombolini 12
Maksim Finogeev 36
Interview: Anna Powierza
Diogo Darte 18
PJ Wang 22
Arianna Ceccarelli 44
Valquire Veljkovic 46
PhotoBook Review: Sylvania
Robert Knight 50
Ping Wang 56
Cristina burns 82
Francis Malapris 68
Maha Alasaker 74
on the cover: Izumi Miyazaki 93
As a geographer and a geopolitician, I have been interested in the social, political and cultural processes that produce territories. As a photographer, I examine these same processes through the place and the landscape. Tourism creates staged territories and landscapes, shaped to fulfill the fantasy of a visitor on holiday seeking a radical rupture from his everyday life.
Ariane de Palacio â€˜Wonderlandâ€™
Touristic places, particularly when they are established in economically, socially and culturally weakened territories, are constructed on an acculturation process and built as an artificial scenery aiming at organizing and regulating a temporary population of tourists for a couple of months during high season. With the Wonderland project, I try to look at these exclusively touristic places as staged theatre sets, fallacious screens between the tourist and the territory.
Luca Tombolini 12
In my photography I follow an instinctive fascination for deserted primordial places. No other views are so helpful in making that mind shift needed to try to enquire beyond our limited lifetime. This process implies contemplation, the Self, the Unconscious and the perceived reality. The dawn of mankind, a time with no rationality. An ancestor contemplating the cosmos perceives the necessity of a divinity. The Second Cosmogony takes place along with the miracle of self-thinking consciousness. In that moment he knows he exists for a reason; heâ€™s got the significative element and this had found a way to reveal itself to him. Conscious and unconscious got together in the creation of the Self.
Diogo Duarte 18
I have a strong attraction to the hidden side of things – or ‘shadows’ – latent in every single thing that surrounds us and often spend most of my time investigating their origins and close relationship with Culture – trying to an-swer the child like question of why do ‘shadows’ exist. And more often than not, poking fun at it. This is an ongoing long-term selfportrait series I started in 2013, at a moment in my life when my internal sense of self was clinically coming apart.
Unconscious Commands and Judgements of our Century
I’m a freelance photographer. Born in Taiwan, based in Tainan. I like to catch anything in life, because this is my mode, capturing life through my images so that we see things as simple and fun. If you could feel it too, it would be great. Mooi in Dutch means Beautiful. The process of shooting, with no extra instruction or action, is in fact like playing hide and seek with friends, showing the most natural look. For me that is the most beautiful thing. By the way, the girl’s name is mooi.
In June 1934, writer André Breton addressed a public audience in Brussels and asked the question
‘What is Surrealism?’
Written by Evan Merner
His own answer to this question was ‘pure psychic automatism’. Although that sounds like a mouthful, what he was essentially saying was that Surrealism is simply spontaneous behaviour, which often has no-purpose and has not been self-censored. Breton is often considered as the founder of Surrealism because he was so sure that it would be a revolutionary movement, and he was right. Beginning in the early 1920’s, Surrealism wasn’t just an art movement, but also a cultural one. It started off as being very literature based but in 1924 there was a sudden turn to photography, and seeing as photography already had a function in representing the world socially and politically, Surrealists wanted to use it to undo that function. The use of photography in the Surrealist movement spanned a range of different mediums from postcards and film stills to experimental montages and dark room techniques. Up until this point there had been a very clear line between fantasy and reality but artists wanted to express their own subconscious by creating illogical scenes and strange creatures from everyday objects. It was all about the unexpected juxtapositions. It was non sequitur. It did not follow logically what had preceded it, and this didn’t matter! Many artists considered their work as artifacts of philosophy. Today when we think of Surrealism, one of the names that crops up almost immediately is Salvador Dalí. One of his most recognisable paintings (and perhaps one of the most wellknown paintings to come out of the Surrealist movement) is ‘The Persistence of Memory’ the famous image of melting stopwatches that many of us
stopwatches that many of us have seen at some point in our lives. This is such a key surrealist piece because it depicts dream-like imagery and the concept of the ‘dream’ is essential in understanding surrealism, with Dalí once describing his artwork as ‘hand-painted dream photographs’. The unexpected juxtaposition and imagery poses a lot of questions and many art critics have differing theories on the meaning of the painting. Some think it shows our lack of control over time, whilst others believe it depicts Einstein’s theory of relativity- that time is so complex it cannot be kept track of through something so simple as a pocket watch.
Man Ray was another iconic artist who dominated the movement with his work, which was very important in popularizing surrealism amongst the masses. Man Ray strove to blur the boundaries between different forms of media. He painted the things that could not be photographed, that came from his imagination. He was particularly interested in the female form and creating a surrealist version of this through various dark rooms techniques. The most famous example of this is ‘Le violin d’Ingres’ which at first may seem humorous but then takes on a second meaning when we realise that Man Ray is portraying how women can be seen as
“Trying to create an image that does not exist, except in one’s imagination, is often an elating game. I particularly enjoy this game when I play it with Salvador Dalí. We were like two accomplices” - Phillipe Hallsman One thing that critics and scholars agree on is that Dalí’s work was often very auto-biographical and drew on childhood memories. Whatever the case, ‘The Persistence of Memory’ is full of symbolism in one form or another and this is why it has become such an iconic piece. He also worked very closely with Photographer Phillipe Halsman and after 28 attempts they captured their iconic ‘Dalí Atomicus’. Whilst he certainly wasn’t the only Surrealist painter who also dabbled in film and photography, he has left behind quite a legacy and has been cited as inspiration for many contemporary artists such as Till Rabus, whose body of work ‘Surrealist Camping Lunch’ is a homage to Dalí himself.
passive playthings- much like the violin. Despite the connotations of gender un-equality, the famous image has been reproduced and copied in various forms throughout popu-lar culture, an example of the impact that Man Ray had (and is still having) on the art world. Nearly a century after the movement emerged, Surrealism is still a very influential style explored within contemporary art. Take Erik Johannson for example, a Swedish photographer who creates realistic photos of impossible scenes. Rather than faking the entire scene in Photoshop, he uses a mixture of physical objects and retouching techniques. It’s the visual
understand themselves better but he thought artists should paint the conscious mind and stop wasting their time painting the imagination. However, this did not stop art-ists expressing themselves and leaving a lasting impact that would influence current culture (take the brilliant Monty Python for example.) With technol-ogy advancing as quickly as it is and the art world growing larger with more experimen-tal ways of working, it’s
illusions that he creates which really draw the viewer in, you can’t just look at his images and process them as quickly as you do with all the other images you see on an everyday basis. ‘For me the realism has always been very important… when you learn the basics of the tools it’s just the im-agination that sets the limits’. He makes you take a second and then a third glance at his images, preventing you from become a passive viewer and instead gets your imagination turning. Lara Zankoul is another young and upcoming photographer who mixes together the weird and wonderful to create new stories. Her work, particularly ‘The Unseen’ blends together elements that wouldn’t usually be seen together and therefore she is able to create these bizarre fantastic scenarios. Her use of colour also helps to create these dream-like fantasies, with pastel palettes and soft lighting each image is tinted with a selective colour.
Neither of these photographers explicitly labels themselves as surrealist artists, but you can see elements of the movement within their work, juxtaposing objects and people to create imaginary situations. Of course with every great art movement comes the voice of critics, and many people did not understand Surrealism. Whilst his work was very influ-ential for Surrealist artists, neu-rologist Sigmund Freud was not a fan. He had spent his life deciphering the codes of the unconscious mind so people could
safe to say that things can only get weirder. In the past decade, Photoshop has made photo manipulation incredibly easier, allowing artists to push the limits and blend the lines between reality and fiction, breaking all established boundaries. As Andre Breton once said:
“surrealism is not just an art movement. It is a way of thinking, a way of life and a way of transforming existence”
We, PATOS PRO (AKA Eliza and Mateusz), are a pair of photographers, who like fashion and commercial photography. We met whilst studying photography. Eliza had finished high school with art profile class, and is really â€œin loveâ€? with fashion and photography. Mateusz is a commercial and graphic specialist and takes care of that side of the work. We are a great photography duo and the most important thing - we make really good work together!
This photography series is about memories from childhood. Some things have disappeared; some are still the same today. It isnâ€™t a sad memory from childhood; itâ€™s only a good reflection, maybe like a trip to old good days. We depict a universal look of that time, which helps us remember better, older, days.
photography, ‘Red Gold’ forFashion me, is the language
of modern beauty and aesthetics. It helps me to define and formulate the stories that demonstrate glamour, which hides the true inner feelings of people and situations. That’s why I like to use a collage technique to show off a multi-layered world.
Red gold, for me, is a visual association with wealth and glory. It ha an emotional interpretation of being rich and famous as a main desire of most people. Like a gold touch of king Midas it has destructive character for its owner.
So it becomes a disease
an interview with Anna Powierza 40
Creating stunning fashion photography, mesmerizing portraits of well-known artists and working for the biggest music label inPoland, we were lucky enough to grab an interview with Anna Powierza. Firstly, we featured you in our first edition, which was, unbelievably, three years ago. I would love to know if, and how, your work style and processes has changed and developed?
The last three years were for me like a never-ending storm. Many things have changed. Today I know much more and I look at everything from distance. I think that the music industry is bound with me for good. Music and my love for it have filled my heart since childhood. I’m very glad that my career evolved in this way. Working with artists is a big challenge; everyone is different and so individual. It’s like an endless adventure.
I’m interested in the relationship between you and your models. Your work seems visually very different depending on your model, I wondered how much of an influence they have and how you really contain their personality and individuality within the image.
It’s true. My portfolio is very diverse and I feel I can’t focus on one thing. Although recently I care more and more about minuteness (which affects the unification of my work. Like I said, I mainly work with artists – they also create my ideas for a whole casting or single photo. I love photographing people; they give me power to live. I`m still thinking about people, their faces and their passion. I’m never despotic on plan, I mean I can be firm, but I always let the actor or model play its role in their own way. I really care about people feeling well with me, so I try to be flexible. I love talking, and people like it when I talk to them, it’s nice and it gives a comfort on the set. My work is my life; I feel the need to live in symbiosis with my models.
You shoot a lot of work in various outside locations. Does the differences in cultures between Poland, Berlin and Moscow inspire you to perhaps become more adventurous in your locations?
I love traveling, but unfortunately I cannot do it as much as I would like to. Each work outside of Poland brings me a new wonderful experience. My best memory is a photo session in Stockholm. I am madly in love with this city! These lights, colors and architecture! I don’t want to move out from Warsaw, but short work trips are fantastic. This, what enriches me is especially humility, openness and diligence, without undue pride. I love the simplicity of the relations between human beings. That’s fantastically transferred to the atmosphere
on the set. I’m not a street photographer and I will never be one. But Berlin for instance, makes me feel so magically! I constantly photographed as crazy! I dream of a clip in Las Vegas – who knows, maybe one day… Since I became artistic director of the Vers-24 portal, more often we establish various international contacts. For this reason, I was invited to the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Moscow. It was for me a big cultural experience! Fashion is really on a highest level there.
“I grew up on Polish poetry and music. I love being Polish, Polishness and our tradition, subtlety and absolute romance of our culture.” Do you have any specific favourite pieces of work that you love, are very proud of or are very special to you? Yes, it was work, which I created together with Anna Maria Przybysz. She was a Polish illustrator and she had a huge talent. Unfortunately I never met her personally. She had to move to Warsaw, where I live, but she didn’t make it – she passed away too early. We have created only 3 images. Collaboration of my photos and her painting will always be for me the most important work. They are beautiful, unusual and unique. We won`t finish our project, it’s such a shame. It could have been a great story.
One of my favourite bodies of work that you have produced, features five young girls, almost conceived as fairies or goddesses. For example, we see them extremely beautifully positioned floating their headbands in the river, I’m really drawn to this work, and it feels to me that it perhaps has surrealism or a dream like way about it. Do you tend to explore these two themes within your work? What were your intentions for this project and how did you go about creating such stunning work. It’s funny, cause it’s also one of my favourite picture. I grew up on Polish poetry and music. I love being Polish, Polishness and our tradition, subtlety and absolute romance of our culture. This is a very Polish image. Those rivers, those beautiful girls… it seems to be a fairy tale. I think I like a fairy tale, though I slowly grow out of them. When I was pressing the shutter of the lens, it was already 10 pm, almost overnight, it made the whole scenery so magical, and unusual. Not often I get such sessions. And those girls were Polish, beautiful and authentic.
I have only one piece of advice, work hard, be humble and modest, and at the right time have a good agent. Those latter I`m still looking for. For now I work a lot, I change and I’m still looking for.
Finally, do you have any thoughts on the future of photography, such as any trends you see, and I’d love to know what your planning on working on next!
I rarely plan something, that’s why I never plan any emotions on shoots. Doing it is quite silly, it’s like cheating. These emotions should be established already in place, because it is important to be true.
Your work various in mediums, from fashion photography, to portraiture, to music videos, and even your Instagram (which I’m hooked too!). By using a range of artistic talents, do you feel like this helps you artistically and perhaps to become more creative then just sticking to one medium? Being a photographer and directing is a very similar work, but the second one requires more talking. You need to talk, because they expect it from you. You’re not yourself, you’re a figure, and it’s wonderful, it’s fantastic! I love it! It’s wonderful to be someone else and easily become a different person, it makes me very happy. I am grateful to people who believed in me and gave me a chance to develop in this direction. I work in the biggest record company/ music label in Poland. It gives me a motivation to work creatively. Basically I work all the time, nonstop. I work with my husband, who is a camera operator, we watch videos, movies, we read, we have no free time. Our work is our greatest passion. As a result, the process of creating is a continuous process, it never ends. In terms of Instagram, I really like it! Someone can say that this is like ‘life for sale’, but I just don’t have anything to hide.
Do you have any advice that you have learned over the years that would be key for anyone aspiring to your level?
I think I agree with Annie Leibovitz, who said that photography is better than ever. It’s only harder to be the best, the bar is very high. In Poland we have so many incredibly talented photographers, that I am not able to follow the competition. Not because I don’t care about it, but because I have no time for it . I buy a lot of foreign magazines, and they just lie there because I don’t have time to go through them. I’m not worried about photography, I feel that it will survive many crises, it is indestructible. People believe in what they see, they want to know more and see more, and we photographers, reporters, directors give it all what the world expects from us. I do not follow trends, you think it’s wrong? It’s a little bit ridiculous for me, such a serious approach to the so-called mobile photography. Of course I also do photos with my phone but I’m not sure if this could be treated as a profession, I don’t think so. And what are my plans? Work, a lot of work. I have a lot to do and to learn. Everyone asks me still for another exhibition, and I say that this is not the right time.
I’m Arianna Ceccarelli, I live in Rome and I’m 22. I’ve been doing photos for 4 years. What I love to do is create artistic and conceptual portraits, trying to tell stories through my images. I also handle natural and fashion photography. I wanted to create a photo-shoot based on the figure of the witch, represented through a fashion photography style. I played with textures, flowers, spider webs and smoke trying to create a magical gothic fairytale.
I’m a Berlin based filmmaker, photographer and media artist. My body of work includes a great variety of photography, music and fashion videos, media art performances, installations and music. Beside my main work I’m experimenting with music as VLQR and do lights and visuals for events and stages as dev01ded. ‘Head Pieces’ is a collaboration project between the photographer Valquire Veljkovic and 7 designers: Baby Bone, Bim Arnby, Jackie Taylor, Mads Dinesen, Raki, Rubbish Fairy and Tata Christiane. Each of them re-interpreted Brazilian headpieces.
Robert Knight ‘In God’s House’
My practice combines still photographs with installation elements such as audio and video to expand the notion of what is considered photography. In my projects, I explore individual and community identity, and mankind’s relationship to the built environment, addressing issues ranging from sleep to child rearing to immigration and religion.
‘In God’s House’ looks at religious diversity as a reflection of the contemporary immigration crisis and demographic shift facing Europe. My photographs of religious services juxtapose historic Christian churches with contemporary mosques in cities across the continent.
Ping Wang ‘Blindspot’
The Blind spot is a place in the visual field that does not detect light. I combine this idea with “Uncanny Valley”, a hypothesis that some features look like natural beings, yet they cause revulsion, to transfer “Blindspot” from physical to psychological. I create the uncanniness into two sections: denial and fear. Subjectively, the impact of loneliness can make an individual ignore or deny certain things. Spontaneously, “blindspot” also generates fear. Due to the lack of interaction with surroundings, the spontaneous emotion of the unknown leads to fear. Just like scenes from movies that have yet to be filmed, each of these images has an individual story from the other, but they are both based on daily subjects or environments, which transform fleeting gestures into mysterious vignettes.
Maya Beano ‘Alpine Blues’
I’m a 24-year-old Cambridge based research scientist who’s enjoyed a lot of event photography jobs on the side. Most recently, I’ve redirected my lens towards the more artistic world of experimental photography. I find the ‘creative tension’ that this provides to be a major driving force in my life. Most of my work nowadays focuses on turning landscapes into dreamscapes. In my latest series, Alpine Blues, I exposed 35mm film to flashes of coloured lights to introduce light leaks. I have found this to be a great way of imparting the photos with a surreal quality.
Francis Malapris ‘Aquatic’
Self taught for 20 years, most of my work is dedicated human photography and in particular the relationship between mind and body; while the first can wander in space and time, the second is tied to present, keeping traces of terrestrial life and age. I had this dream - a woman drifting in mid water, looking for light as the last link with life. I wrote a novel about it. Then pictures came to me when I was working with infrared. The underwater effect is beyond my expectations, making these girls look like mermaids.
Maha Alasaker â€˜Nothingnessâ€™
AsÂ a woman born and raised in the Middle East, I had to learn untold dynamics and adapt to them by hiding aspects of my true self to fit in.Â This work addresses feelings of restriction, constraint and the universal theme of oppression brought on by cultural and societal codes.
PhotoBook Review: Sylvania by Anna Beeke Written by Natasha Dos Santos With an acute awareness of the importance of forests as myth and more, photographer Anna Beeke ventured out into the unknown as she searched for a space connected to the genesis of her life and discovered that her own roots were very much entwined with those of the trees. Currently based in Brooklyn NY, the documentary and fine arts photographer was born in Washington DC and was compelled by her own conception (on the “heavily forested” San Juan Islands). She began this project by exploring the Pacific Northwest on a mission to find something there and what she found in turn to gave life to a body of work entitled Sylvania. Realising that the forest as a collective space and neutral territory has long occupied the minds of small children and adults alike, Anna’s book Sylvania embodies the fable of the forest through the punctum of real life. Harking to the experience as shared; we are given the ability to evoke our own memories from within the woodlands of both our minds eye and those held within the confinement of the covers of Anna’s book. As every one of our senses is awakened (and heightened even more so by the accompanying text by Brian Doyle), it is this united imagination that Anna set about to seize and unlock within the viewer; each photograph filled with more intrigue than the last, as we are led into woodlands from Washington and Oregon to Vermont and Louisiana as well as an abundance of other mysterious green places in between. The beautiful book Sylvania, having been in the palm of my hands, tells me without any doubt that what Anna found is so much more than merely what meets the eye. From chance encounters with woodsmen and other strangers to discarded trainers hung on power lines, the book is filled with little photographic utterances that ignite the imagination and as we journey from one page to the next we happen upon
more than just the picturesque as we are treated to a viewing platform overlooking the contemporary heart of today’s woodland scenes. Describing her book as a “composite ‘forest-land’ of photographs;” grounded in the real but realised in the imaginary, Sylvania celebrates all that is mystic and magic about forests as a universal whole through the landscape of American woodlands. Although not one to usually step within the frame, here we also get to see glimpses of the photographer within her own work, and what with Sylvania’s origins being so closely entangled with that of her own, rightly so. While not strictly a self-portrait project, the intimacy of self-reflection is as rich as the colours of the setting and as bold as the age-old dialogue of man and nature itself, a topic that is felt, not just by Anna alone, to be of as much significance today as it always has been. More about the project and other work by Anna Beeke can be found on WWW.ANNABEEKE.COM Sylvania can be purchased here ANNABEEKE.BIGCARTEL.COM
Matthew Fleming 86
My work largely revolves around stream of consciousness storytelling, with a focus on culture and social change. This flaneurial style is mostly defined by fleeting candid moments captured on the street and whilst my work is inherently documentary I enjoy grouping ostensibly unrelated images to craft cohesive narratives. ‘In Praise of Shadows’ and ‘Wet Paint’ are two distinctly different series, at least in subject matter, but when examined together the motivations behind the pictures become a little more obvious. There’s a feverish, impatient restlessness, and slightly dark, disconcerting dreamlike quality that haunts the photographs.
Photographers index Maha Alasaker // mahaalasaker.com Maya Beano // mayabeanophotography.com Cristina Burns // cristinaburns.com Arianna Cecarelli // facebook.com/ariannacecarelliphotography Diogo Duarte // diogo-duarte.com Maksim Finogeev // finomaks.com Matthew Fleming // matthewjamesfleming.com Robert Knight // robertknight.com Francis Malapris // malapris.com Izumi Miyazaki // izumimiyazaki.tumblr.com Ariane de Palacio // blog.arianedepalacio.com PATOS PRO // facebook.com/patospro Luca Tombolini // lucatombolini.net Valquire Veljkovic // valquire.de Ping Wang // pingwangxin.com PJ Wang // pj-wang.format.com
on the cover
I was born in Japan in 1994. I am studying photography in Musashino Art University. My favourite food is tomatoes, chocolates, rice, and so on! And I make self-portraits because I have an inferiority complex. I wanted to make me who is better than anyone in photos. I like food, so it often appears in my photos.
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#PHOTOGRAPHY is an online magazine run by two Coventry University photography graduates with a passion for image making. www.hashtagphotogra...
Published on Dec 10, 2015
#PHOTOGRAPHY is an online magazine run by two Coventry University photography graduates with a passion for image making. www.hashtagphotogra...