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Soura Magazine | Issue 35 | Art Dubai 2013

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CONTENT | ISSUE 35 14 Erwin Olaf Mixing Photography 26 Eugenio Recuenco From Madrid with Love 46 Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal The Codes of Modernity 58 Van Cleef & Arpels The Transformability 266 Markus Mueller Grasping a Quirky Moment 274 Peter Kemp Story-Telling Frames 280 Tejal Patni From One Lens to Another 292 Miho Aikawa Dinner in New York 302 Stéphanie de Rougé Paris in New York 308 Pro Art Gallery Flash Back on Photography

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Mixing Photography | Erwin Olaf

Erwin Olaf

Mixing Photography

Erwin Olaf was born in 1959 in Hilversum, Netherlands, and currently resides in Amsterdam. Mixing photojournalism with studio photography, Olaf emerged on the international art scene in 1988, when his series Chessmen was awarded the first prize in the Young European Photographer competition. This award was followed by an exhibition at the Ludwig Museum in Cologne, Germany in the same year. In his earlier work on the subject of social exclusion Olaf was deliberately disturbing with the intention of raising awareness and he was dedicated towards exploring issues of class, race, sexual taste, beliefs, habits and grace. His recent series Keyhole (2011-2012), centers around Olaf’s first 3D installation The Keyhole (already in the collection of the Museum voor Moderne Kunst Arnhem, The Netherlands and the Samsung Children’s Museum, Seoul, South Korea) balances on the thin line between intimacy, shame and feelings of guilt. In 2012 Olaf created the series Berlin, entirely shot on location. Using historically important settings in Berlin, Olaf shows children and (young) adults in a transcendent relation with each other. In 1987 he began working with film, which has since then continued to be an important medium for his art. In the past years Olaf’s films have been screened at several leading museums and film festivals all around the world. His worldwide campaigns for Diesel Jeans and Heineken won him the coveted Silver Lion at the Cannes Lions Festival for Advertising. In 2010 Louis Vuitton commissioned Olaf for a portrait series in collaboration with the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. He also won numerous other international art and media prizes.

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Mixing Photography | Erwin Olaf

De La Mar - 8 Classic Plays: Amadeus

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De La Mar - 8 Classic Plays: Who’s afraid of Virginia Woolf

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Mixing Photography | Erwin Olaf

The Kitchen from Hope Series

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Mixing Photography | Erwin Olaf

The Practice from Hope Series

The Boxing School from Hope Series

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The Classroom from Hope Series


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Mixing Photography | Erwin Olaf

Libération

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Personal Fairytales When people ask me to describe myself I say: I’m a studio photographer. I try to bring the fantasies I dream up to life in a technical way, a high standard technical way. I also like to create fairy tale moods, my own personal fairytales. I sometimes like to infuse humour into my fairytales.

What I love about photography is people. The amount of differences between people always makes me curious. What I love about photography is people.  The amount of differences between people always makes me curious. I’m really a people’s photographer. Working with a camera affords me many opportunities to meet interesting people from varying backgrounds. I often feel like a hairdresser when I’m working with people, I hear a lot of stories from the people I work with, and we share life experiences. Photography gave me the opportunity to express my dreams! A lot of my work takes inspiration from the 1970s and 1980s Italian, Spanish and German cinema. Films by directors David Lynch, Federico Fellini, Pier Paolo Pasolini and Almodovar are among my favorites. I like to portray the more personal and vulnerable sides of people’s lives. There is always a story behind that. I always like to leave room for the audience to come up with their own interpretation of my work. I like to pay great attention to detail, detail is very important to me.

A lot of my work takes inspiration from the 1970s and 1980s Italian, Spanish and German cinema. Some of my inspiration comes from the paintings of Norman Rockwell, Edward Hopper and the photography of Guy Boudin, Helmut Newton and Christopher Makos. © All images courtesy of Erwin Olaf and Gallery Carbon 12 www.ErwinOlaf.com and www.Carbon12Dubai.com

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Mixing Photography | Erwin Olaf

The Boardroom from Rain Series

The Hairdresser from Rain Series

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The Dancing School from Rain Series

The Gym from Rain Series

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From Madrid with Love | Eugenio Recuenco

Eugenio Recuenco

From Madrid with Love

Eugenio Recuenco was born in 1968 in Madrid, Spain. His work has been featured in many international publications such as Madame Figaro, Wad, Spoon, Planet, Vanity Fair, Stern, and ZinK. His work also found its way into some Spanish magazines such as Vogue, View, Vanidad, GQ, SModa, and Woman. Recuenco has also collaborated with the Abbe Pierre Foundation. Recuenco has worked on international advertising campaigns for some of the world’s leading brands like Boucheron, Nina Ricci, and Diesel to name but a very few, and some Spanish campaigns for brands such as Carrera y Carrera, and Cuty Sark, again to name a few. He has also developed short films for world famous brands, as well as several music videos. Recuenco made documentaries such as Deseo, which was filmed in India, and Taylor Swift’s Wonderstruck. Throughout his career, Recuenco has exhibited his photography work as well as his installations, has received awards and accolades, as well as won professional photography contests.

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From Madrid with Love | Eugenio Recuenco

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From Madrid with Love | Eugenio Recuenco

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From Madrid with Love | Eugenio Recuenco

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Turning the Camera Around | Tim Mantoani


The Factor of Time Although most of my images are a result of a commercial or a fashion commission, I always strive to infuse into my work an artistic perspective. In my personal series I try to reflect my interpretations of the world and society I live in. I constantly feel a need to want to praise or critique or break out of the world I live in through my work, and photography provides the perfect format to do just that.

In my personal series I try to reflect my interpretations of the world and society I live in. Sometimes the general concept is important in a series, because it tells us a story. Other times it’s a big mural photograph that due its size allows for more detail in the story. All the photographs that I take develop in a natural and organic way, just like paintings do. You have an idea, but at the end of the day it’s the medium you have and the building of the set that are going to gradually adapt to what you need. A photo set is like a blank canvass where you start placing elements such as stains that you would put on a painting as it starts taking form.

All the photographs that I take develop in a natural and organic way, just like paintings do. That is why I feel that this way of working is the closest to painting, because a photographic action is one instant, but the time factor of preparation and set work is what tells the story. This time-factor is important to me because it allows me to project combinations of different moods in the photograph. I think this is essential when you want to be as honest as possible with your work.

© All images courtesy of Eugenio Recuenco www.EugenioRecuenco.com

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From Madrid with Love | Eugenio Recuenco

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From Madrid with Love | Eugenio Recuenco

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From Madrid with Love | Eugenio Recuenco

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From Madrid with Love | Eugenio Recuenco

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The Codes of Modernity | Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal

Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal

The Codes of Modernity

Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal have been working together since 2008. With fully staged scenes, their images reveal the dark side and reveries of an intimate world completely saturated by the codes and archetypes of modernity. After studying at the Ecole Normale Supérieure de la Rue d’Ulm in Paris, Goutal trained at Harvard’s Department of Visual Arts under the direction of Chris Killip. Leriche studied literature at the Sorbonne and the School of Visual Arts in the Rue de Seine in Paris. Today, Leriche and Goutal live in Belle-Ile-en Mer. The photos of Leriche and Goutal draw their inspiration from the iconography of advertising that hits our eyes everyday. The characters in scene are young and dynamic. The scenery in which they work reflects a stereotypical social success.

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The Codes of Modernity | Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal

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The Codes of Modernity | Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal

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Heading Towards Nothingness Directly inspired by the shadowy codes of advertising imagery, the Transitions series stages stereotypes from the world of work, where figures are caught off guard and separated while the photograph is being taken from the essential part of their lives: productive work, constant movement or eroticism.

The initial seductive impression dissolves to reveal an absurd world with no real substance, where identity is obliterated by a false performance of self. Against a backdrop of western urban life, these businessmen, housewives or young employees seem lost in an absent moment, separating the time of the photograph from its essence: movement, action, social success. However, they seem to be escaping from their role in life to attain beauty and happiness as idealised in images from mass media. The initial seductive impression dissolves to reveal an absurd world with no real substance, where identity is obliterated by a false performance of self. During these unguarded moments, the individuals seem unaware of heading towards nothingness. Their body shies away and escapes from their control, revealing the fragility of their existence. The spectator becomes a witness to a moment of grace, the resistance of the soul in the face of a society devoted to the worship of consumerism. In all these illustrations of sequence of life, Leriche and Goutal show the flaws and the ruptures, which elude the flow. These are areas of uncertainty in the middle of an environment with the strong potential to be alienating.

The spectator becomes a witness to a moment of grace, the resistance of the soul in the face of a society devoted to the worship of consumerism. Between dream and reality, each image reveals a hollow world in absentia, where mystery reigns as main character. Each image has been worked out in advance and then staged. The décor has often been constructed from scratch. By choosing to make our presence felt in most of the scenes, Leriche and Goutal are playing with the confusion and artificiality of modern identities.

© All images courtesy of Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal www.olivia-et-vincent.com

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The Codes of Modernity | Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal

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The Codes of Modernity | Olivia Leriche and Vincent Goutal

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Grasping a Quirky Moment | Markus Mueller

Markus Mueller

Grasping a Quirky Moment

Markus Mueller was born in Germany in 1976. He studied political science and history before dedicating himself to photography full time. In 2003, Mueller graduated from LetteVerein (School of Photography), in Berlin and subsequently worked as an assistant with various photographers. He has been working as a freelance photographer since 2005 and continues to live and work in Berlin. Mueller’s photographs are characterized by complex image compositions. He quite deliberately stages exaggerated and quirky situations proving his remarkable grasp of the moment with just the right atmosphere. His works received various awards including ones from ADC Germany, and ADC Europe, as well as the Clio Award, the Epica Award and D&AD, to name a few. Many national and international clients, such as Mercedes-Benz, Panasonic, Levi’s, Hornbach, Volkswagen, Adidas and Deutsche Bahn appreciate his approach to his work and the results he achieves.

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Grasping a Quirky Moment | Markus Mueller

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Grasping a Quirky Moment | Markus Mueller

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Freedom of Association I have always been inspired by art, especially by Renaissance and Baroque Art with their atmospheric light and aesthetics. However, what has always been visually interesting to me is Impressionism and absurd and imaginative Surrealism or Realism with its splendid world of colors and powerful pictorial language. Often my pictures deal with situations from every day life, which I place into bizarre context in my staged presentation. Excess and exaggeration are my clear stylistic elements.

I think inspiration of the beholder should always be the main objective of a picture. It is not my intention to transmit clearly defined messages with my pictures. I think inspiration of the beholder should always be the main objective of a picture. A picture can indicate a certain direction, however it does not necessarily have to explain it in detail. At best, it should always hint at a story.

Giving people food for thought and also putting a smile on their faces is worth striving for. To me “freedom of association” of the beholder is very important. It is much more exciting to have a shift of perspective resulting from the diverse experiences of the beholders. My pictures also have a certain humoresque take on the world. Giving people food for thought and also putting a smile on their faces is worth striving for.

© All images courtesy of Markus Mueller www.M-Mueller.org

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Story-Telling Frames | Peter Kemp

Peter Kemp

Story-Telling Frames

Peter Kemp is a freelance photographer living in the Netherlands. Through his photographic work, Kemp tries to create pictures that tell stories. He likes to create certain moods, which allows him to infuse drama into his pictures. Kemp attempts to catch the viewer’s eye upon a quick glance of his creations, but also constructs a complex narrative that can take the viewer on a journey with a deeper, longer look. Kemp tries to combat the fast pace of modern daily life through his work that beckons the viewer to stop and ponder the worlds he creates. He tries to captivate his audience through his scenarios and hopes that the viewer can create and experience his own little story from Kemp’s pictures.

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Story-Telling Frames | Peter Kemp

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Story-Telling Frames | Peter Kemp

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The Glamorous and the Erotic In the past I used to love to draw. But today, the magic of digital photography allows me to incorporate all my ideas running through my head into my photo-stories. I am very interested in the era between the 1930’s to the 1970’s. The theme of vintage allows me to incorporate both glamorous as well as erotic nuances into my pictures.

The theme of vintage allows me to incorporate both glamorous as well as erotic nuances into my pictures.

My beautiful models are a major part of setting up my story telling pictures. Most of my models are now my friends. They are not only good looking people, but – more importantly – they are beautiful on the inside. I give them all the credits. Teamwork and careful preparation are the most important factors when creating my scenes.

© All images courtesy of Peter Kemp www.Peterkemp.nl

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From One Lens to Another | Tejal Patni

Tejal Patni

From One Lens to Another Tejal Patni was born and raised in India and studied photography at the Sir JJ Institute of Applied Arts. After completing his degree, Patni began to work as a professional photographer on a series of international advertising campaigns and secured a reputation for himself as a top advertising and fashion photographer. Patni later worked as a screen director and DOP, (director of photography), for Channel V and MTV. He worked on several projects in Bombay and Dubai, directing TVCs and promos. Patni chose to continue his education in film at the London Film Academy where he graduated in 2006. He now continues to work as a freelance photographer and has recently ventured into film direction in South Africa, India and Dubai.

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From One Lens to Another | Tejal Patni

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From One Lens to Another | Tejal Patni

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From One Lens to Another | Tejal Patni

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Directing The Moment This is probably quite a cliché explanation, but in reality, I use feature films as references when I work. I don’t really try to imitate that sort of light… but when I shoot fashion, I try to set the mood of a particular film that I’ve seen. In the end the results might be totally different, but that is certainly the ground I start my lighting from.

I find it difficult to give 100% to film and photography, so I’m sort of midway. The Cohen brothers tend to use a particular Director of Photography, Roger Dickens. His films – whatever he’s done for the Cohen brothers or for anyone else – are fabulous and they inspire me a lot. If you look at Wong Kar-wai films, the ones shot by Christopher Doyle, his work is awesome. I find it difficult to give 100% to film and photography, so I’m sort of midway. I’m not an active film director but whenever I do get the opportunity, I do try to direct films. My first big break came when I got to work with Grey, which was then the most creative agency in Bombay. I had the privilege of working with the two most creative guys in India, and that was in my third year of college. Nobody had done that while in college. Because I went to an art/advertising school, I understand the language of advertising and what advertisers are trying to communicate.

I understand the language of advertising and what advertisers are trying to communicate. Unlike an advertising shoot, where many people are involved and at times the client calls the shots, I enjoy fashion photography more only because there is no layout or a preconceived notion to what the campaign or editorial should look like. Therefore, it’s more of an open-ended brief, it has more to do with storytelling, current trends, or current looks.

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From One Lens to Another | Tejal Patni

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From One Lens to Another | Tejal Patni

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Tangled in the Strings of Love It’s the night when wedding bells should have chimed. But an unfortunate turn of events leads to a tragic separation of puppeteer Gautier and his beloved Monique.

This is a tale of two hearts tangled by the delicate strings of an unfinished relationship. L’enfer. Hell. Blatant synonyms for the brutal reality of being torn apart from the one you love the most. Should you hold on? Or should you let go? Questions tug torturously at Monique’s mind while Gautier ponders in the disquieting silence of a dungeon. This is a tale of two hearts tangled by the delicate strings of an unfinished relationship. Room13 was the subject behind this year’s splash Calendar. Number 13 is also an allusion to “Hell.” Hell in French is L’enfer, hence the title.I wanted to stretch my imagination beyond my 2011 & 2012 Splash Calendars. Puppets always fascinated me, so to add a layer to my story I decided to add a puppeteer and tell a love story.

Through love came separation; through separation came the act of physically being apart.” Through love came separation; through separation came the act of physically being apart. The puppet in her wedding gown on the day of the wedding is waiting, while the puppeteer is behind bars. The puppet and the puppeteer are still connected through their strings and nothing could break them apart!

© All images courtesy of Tejal Patni www.TejalPatni.com

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Dinner in New York | Miho Aikawa

Miho Aikawa

Dinner in New York

Since Miho Aikawa graduated in 2012 from the Masters in Digital Photography program at the School of Visual Arts, she has been residing in New York. Aikawa attended the Sophia University in Tokyo, Japan, as a journalism major. In her junior year, she moved to Miami where she attended the University of Miami to study photojournalism in a one-year exchange program. The experience in Miami broadened her view and strengthened her desire to become a photographer. 
 Aikawa became a freelance photographer and won The Best Award for Corporate and Commodity Advertisement from Japan Advertising Photographers’ Association Competition in 2006. Aikawa’s work has been exhibited in museums and public spaces such as Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography, Osaka Municipal Museum of Art, World Bank Tokyo, and Konika Minolta Plaza Tokyo. The Kiyosato Museum of Photographic Arts collects her photography. ABOVE: Jai Yoon Lee, a student from South Korea has dinner in her dorm room watching her favorite Japanese TV shows. Age: 20 Time: 7:51 PM Location: Greenwich Village, New York. BELOW: Queenie Monica Chan loves to cook simple dinner at home like pasta, and enjoys taking the time to relax. Age: 32 Time: 7:27 PM Location: East Village, New York. FACING PAGE: U Pa Mok Kha is a monk from Myanmar who cannot eat after 12 noon. Local people bring him food and after he is done, he shares the rest of the food with them. Age: 55 Time: 11:17 AM Location: Jackson Heights, Queens.

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Dinner in New York | Miho Aikawa

Yohan Kim, an architect, worked over time with his coworkers. They had pizza and beer on the desk. Age: 28 Time: 7:27 PM Location: Dumbo, Brooklyn.

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Gideon, a security guard of a storage company eats a simple dinner at work. Time: 7:42 PM Location: Vinegar Hill, Brooklyn.

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Soura Magazine had the great opportunity of having a one on one chat with Miho Aikawa, to get insight into her life and work. You were studying journalism in Tokyo then in your junior year switched gears and moved to Miami to study photojournalism. How has the experience in Miami influenced your photography career? The experience was exciting and totally different from what I had done before. I became fascinated with taking pictures and decided to become a professional photographer.  Almost 10 years have passed since then but I still remember strongly how taking photos became my passion. The inspiration and the excitement I received in Miami forms the very basis of my motivation as a photographer.  What steered you in the direction of journalism as a major? I wanted to be a person who reports something and tells a story to people, so I decided to major in journalism at college. Were you always interested in the arts? Photography in particular? I loved creating things and was surrounded by art as a child, particularly fashion because my mother was a fashion designer. I was not, however, surrounded by much photography. What are some of the most memorable places where your work has been exhibited? For me, people’s reaction and what they feel through my works is more memorable and important than where my photographs are exhibited. I do however; strongly remember the 2006 exhibition at Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography where my work was exhibited in public for the first time. It gave me the confidence I needed to start my career as a professional photographer.  

I focus on shooting each casual ‘moment’ that passes by in our daily lives and my photography is about telling a precious story that lies in each moment. What are some awards you have received for your photography work? I received the 2012 PDN Top Knots Contest - Grand Prize, as well as the 2009 KMOPA Young Portfolio award, Japan. In 2006, I received the Japan Advertising Photographers’ Association Competition – The Best Award for Corporate and Commodity Advertisement. Is there a particular theme or message you find yourself drawn towards when developing your projects? I focus on shooting each casual ‘moment’ that passes by in our daily lives and my photography is about telling a precious story that lies in each moment. People occasionally tend to get ‘bored’ with their daily lives but I believe that we are just overlooking the many fun, exciting, surprising and treasured things that are out there.  

What makes photography as a medium more appealing to you than other mediums? When I was studying journalism at the Sophia University of Tokyo, I was always wondering which media would best suit my needs to communicate with people. I’m definitely not the linguist type, and was always more drawn to visual communication. During my early years at the college I traveled to many places and enjoyed taking pictures a lot. When I had a camera in my hand, it gave me the courage to speak to the locals to photograph them, though I would be too shy to do that without a camera.  I believe a camera has a magic power and, it encouraged me to explore the world.

I’m definitely not the linguist type, and was always more drawn to visual communication. Your Dinner in NY series feels like a voyeuristic perspective of an otherwise common act of having dinner, but the focus on the mealtime makes one pause. Why did you choose Dinner as the focus of this series? Both of my parents had full-time jobs and it was difficult for us to spend time together. They decided that we would try to have dinner together as often as possible to share time among the family. Even when we could not eat dinner together, my mother cooked and tried to prepare for us a homemade meal everyday.  As a teenager growing up, I was unconcerned about the importance of that family rule. However, now I understand that the time we had dinner together as a family had irreplaceable value to all of us, and it meant a lot.   Having dinner is not just about eating food, and dinner time portrays many aspects of our lives more than lunch or breakfast would, since the term “dinner” refers to the main meal in a day.  Even if the food provides the necessary nutrition, that alone is not enough.  The question is “What is a quality dinner?” My theme is to propose thinking what a dinner should be by objectively seeing different dinner situations. Dinner can be a social activity, but for my project I wanted to focus more on private dinner moments, which take place regularly and more often. So I always ask my subjects to have dinner as they normally would.  It’s true to say that my photo project has a voyeuristic perspective and it’s one of the key elements. Dinner time is usually private and reveals a part of a person’s life style. My attempt is to capture such subtle as well as important moments that pass by our daily lives and convey them through the form of photography. 

FACING PAGE: Zheng Yun lives with her daughter and son, but usually eats dinner alone while watching TV. Age: 52 Time: 8:54 PM Location: Vinegar Hill, Brooklyn.

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Dinner in New York | Miho Aikawa

Richard Phillip Nelson, who works in several restaurants, eats dinner during his break at an organic cafe in Earthmatters. He is an organic vegan and comes to this cafe a few times in a week. Age: 59, Time: 5:58 PM Location: Lower East Side, New York.

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Garro Heedae, a musician has dinner late at night after intensive drum rehearsal sessions. Age: 28 Time: 1:20 AM Location: Vinegar Hill, Brooklyn.

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Dinner in New York | Miho Aikawa

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The Pleasure of the Table The term dinner refers to the main meal in a day. Consumption of food is as essential an element of life as sleeping for a human being. Most of the people who know the importance of eating habits care about the quality of food and nutrition. However, even if the food provides the necessary nutrition, that alone is not enough. The question is, what is a quality dinner? Having dinner is not just about eating food, but portrays many aspects of our lives.

We now do almost 50 percent of our eating while concentrating on something else. A study in Public Health Nutrition which compiles data relating to American’s foodrelated time-use over the past 30 years reveals some interesting trends: Eating as a primary activity declined in the past 30 years. On the other hand, eating as a secondary activity rose dramatically in the past 30 years. When we combine the primary and secondary eating time, we see that in total we’re spending an average of 25 minutes or more daily eating than we did 30 years ago. We now do almost 50 percent of our eating while concentrating on something else.

I would like to propose thinking what a dinner should be by objectively seeing diverse dinner situations. I would like to propose thinking what a dinner should be by objectively seeing diverse dinner situations. When you enjoy mealtimes, you’re more likely to eat better. Let’s think of what we can do to enhance the pleasure of the table. © All images courtesy of Miho Aikawa www.MihoPhoto.com

FACING PAGE: Kristy May has quick dinner, dandling her one month newborn baby. Age: 32 Time: 4:50 PM Location: Greenpoint, Brooklyn. ABOVE: Chelsea Olson, a model concentrates on her food while reviewing her busy day. Age: 20 Time: 8:13 PM Location: Windsor Terrace, Brooklyn. BELOW: Kimberly Cherubin and Gregory Santos, wife and husband often stay late at offices on weekdays but try to have dinner together as much as possible, usually accompanied by their cat,Tigerlilli. Age: Kimberly 31, Gregory 31 Time: 9:06 PM Location: Inwood, New York.

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Paris in New York | Stéphanie de Rougé

Stéphanie de Rougé Paris in New York

After 30 years in Paris (France), Stéphanie de Rougé moved to New York where she has lived and worked since 2006. Her main interest in life is to observe humans in urban spaces. De Rougé sees her purpose as not to invade but to share. De Rougé works as a photography teacher at The International Center of Photography, and as a freelance portrait photographer for various magazines and international clients. She is also a contributor for La Lettre de La Photographie and the The New York Times. Her work has been shown at the Palais de Tokyo (Paris), Bibliothèque Nationale de France (Paris), Le Bon Marché (Paris), Galerie Photo 12 (Paris), Galerie Duboys (Paris), and Soho Photo Gallery (New York). De Rougé has received awards from Flash Forward 2009 (Canada) and La bourse du Talent 2009 (France). Her work has also been featured in The New York Times Newspaper, Le Monde Magazine, Images Magazine, ELLE, Io Donna, Zoom magazine, Esquire, and Liberation, among others. Between 2000 and 2006, as well as working as an editorial portrait photographer in Paris, France, De Rougé founded two major photography projects for underprivileged children: ‘Labo Photo’, and ‘Regards’. Aurore, (Jewelry designer) – Paris, France 302  Soura Issue 35


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Paris in New York | Stéphanie de Rougé

Blandine (At home mother), Juliette, Gabrielle – Rye, NY

Corentin (University Teacher), Jerome (Commercial Director), Vivienne (Management controller), Kadafi (Entrepreneur), Tina (Nanny), Amen (Broker), Maja (Student), Greg (University Teacher), Suthisa (Student), Benjamin (Marketing director), Cécile (Public relations for fashion industry), & Jérémy (Student) - New Jersey 304  Soura Issue 35


Andrew (Graphic designer), & Framton (Historic preservationist) – Brooklyn, NY

Michael (Painter), Murielle (High School teacher), Adele - Paris, France

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Paris in New York | Stéphanie de Rougé

Monique (Retired graphologist) - Paris, France

Fred (Painter) – Brooklyn, NY

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Free the Mushrooms The fridge project is part of a general research on intimacy in big cities that I started shooting in 2009. I have always been fascinated by the way so many humans adapt to living in the craziness of humongous cities. How people work, breathe, interact, walk, eat and mourn, where they find the soft, the poetic, the soothing, where they hide their secrets. All these questions became a quest for images.

I thought looking inside the fridge would probably tell the more surprising stories about people… I started making portraits of people in their bedrooms – such a particular place wherever you go in the world, then on their rooftops – a fantastic “in between” earth and sky that has a lot to say about intimacy. After those 2 first panels of my research, I asked myself: what is a place where you wouldn’t allow yourself to just open or look in without the permission of your host? Fridges, drawers, closed boxes. Because the world has such interesting but worrying issues about food these days, I thought looking inside the fridge would probably tell the more surprising stories about people without being intrusive. And I was right! As I usually do when I start this kind of project, I give myself general lines: Who? City people, from everywhere in the world and who chose to live in New York City for a while, (to be extended to major cities in the world if possible later on). Where? In people’s homes, my subjects didn’t know beforehand that I will take their picture, or that I would like access to their fridges. How? In this series, the important but tricky thing was also to find random people who would accept posing for me. Social media works well in that regard. Friends of colleagues of friends work too. Even random people in the street sometimes!

My subjects didn’t know beforehand that I will take their picture, or that I would like access to their fridges What equipment? I always do a few tests (on my poor hubby) before I go on the first shoot. This time I wanted an edgy editorial look so I decided to go digital - Nikon D700 and a wide-angle lens - with a super simple and portable lighting set. What strategy?

For this project, because I didn’t want my subjects to have time to tidy or clean their fridges, I had to set up a plan: I asked my subjects if I could shoot portrait of them, and I didn’t talk about the fridge part of the project. Once I was in their home and the portrait shot was done, I would explain the rest of the project and ask permission to take a picture of the fridge. A funny thing: they all had very strong reactions. What in the final goal? To look, hear, laugh, think, and share. I wanted to make an interesting image and textual story out of this, and why not an art installation or a memory card game. It was a fabulous cultural, humoristic, intimate experience. People are really weird and beautiful. And they have so many stories to tell. Food wise, I think the adventure could become a sociological study. There is so much to say. You can certainly start reading people’s personality by taking a peek at what they eat. It is super exciting to understand who cooks, who doesn’t, who eats fresh, who does take out every night, what are the essentials when the fridge is empty, But even more intriguing is the way I think – and this is more of an artistic assumption based only on colors, shapes and lines – that people look like the inside of their fridges.

I wanted to make an interesting image and textual story out of this, and why not an art installation or a memory card game. I also found many strange objects in people’s refrigerators. Some say silk can only take cold storage, some think that film, perfume and medication will last longer if stored in the white box, some even reserve a space in their fridge for private messaging with their loved ones, be it in the shape of a paper note or a sexy Barbie Doll. Then one day I realized that a third of the entire space of my fridge is crowded by non food items: 4x5 Polaroids, 35mm films of all kind (all completely outdated), 3 bottles of Issey Miyake perfume, a few packs of menthol cigarettes, and an old yellow post-it saying, “Don’t eat my soup!” On the same post-is an answer note from my husband, “Free the Mushroom”. At the time it made me laugh and we’ve had this in the fridge for years. Since then we became parents and huge fans of hiking in national parks with our baby in a backpack. “Free the Mushrooms” has become the name under which my husband signs his many wilderness videos. Fantastic things can definitely start in a fridge! © All images courtesy of Stéphanie de Rougé www.StéphaniedeRougé.com

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Flash Back on Photography | Pro Art Gallery

FLASH BACK ON PHOTOGRAPHY Pro Art Gallery’s latest exhibition, Flash Back on Photography opened its doors to art lovers and art patrons on February 20, 2013, and ran until March 11, 2013 at the Palm Strip Shopping Mall on Jumeirah Beach Road, Jumeirah.

© Willy Ronis

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The exhibition celebrated the different genres of photography by bringing together the work of world-renowned photographers. Work of photojournalists such as Sebastiao Salgado, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Willy Ronis to the contemporary photography of artists such as Andreas Gursky, Cedric Delsaux, Murat Germen, Amr Fekry, Claudio Cocciadiferro, Paul Seux, Kelly Brbich, Michel Dubois and Valerie Le Fevre, to name a few.

© Sebastiao Salgado

Photography connoisseurs and photography enthusiasts gathered to appreciate the wide range of topics addressed in the subject matter of the work exhibited. Ranging from nature, to world events, still life to culture, and more. “The art of photography has come a long way. With technology development and improved techniques, this art form is much more accessible and increased the number of photographers. This exhibition is a platform where master photographers will showcase their interpretation of different subjects using their unique style, colour and technique,” says Tatiana Faure, Director of ProArt Gallery. Pro Art Gallery is known regionally for its art collections, and its continuous support and promoting of visual art.

© Henri Cartier - Bresson

© Henri Cartier - Bresson

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Flash Back on Photography | Pro Art Gallery

© Sebastiao Salgado

© Andreas Gursky

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BIOGRAPHIES OF FEATURED ARTISTS Sebastiao Salgado Born in 1944, Sebastiao Salgado has earned himself the recognition of being one of the most famous photojournalists today. His inspiring photographs include Sahara (Algeria-2009), and Dinka Cattle Camp (Southern Sudan-2006). In 2004 he initiated a project called Genesis aimed at presenting the unblemished faces of nature and humanity. The project consists of a series of photographs of landscapes, wildlife, as well as human communities that continue to live in accordance with their ancestral traditions and cultures. This body of work is conceived to be a potential path to humanity’s rediscovery of itself in nature. Henri Cartier – Bresson Henri Cartier-Bresson was born in 1908 in France and is revered as a pioneer in modern photojournalism. He wandered around the world with his camera, becoming totally immersed in his current environment. He is considered one of the major artists of the 20th century, having covered many of the world’s biggest events.

© Antique Photography

Andreas Gursky Born in Leipzig, Germany in 1955, Andreas Gursky grew up in Düsseldorf, the only child of a successful commercial photographer. Having learnt the tricks of the trade before he finished high school, Gursky is best known for his largescale color photographs that explore and reflect the effect of capitalism and globalization on contemporary life. Gursky takes his inspiration from a wide range of sources and his photographs are often altered digitally before printing. Willy Ronis Willy Ronis was born in Paris; his father was a Jewish refugee from Odessa, and his mother was a refugee from Lithuania, both escaped from the pogroms. His father opened a photography studio in Montmartre, and his mother gave piano lessons. Originally hoping to become a composer, his violin studies were put on hold when his father fell ill and Ronis had to take over the family portrait business. After his father died in 1936, Ronis became a freelance photographer, and was the first French photographer to work for Life Magazine. Ronis began teaching in the 1950s, and taught at the School of Fine Arts in Avignon, Aix-en-Provence and Saint Charles, Marseilles. In 1979 he was awarded the Grand Prix des Arts et Lettres for Photography by the Minister for Culture, and won the Prix Nadar in 1981 for his photo book, Sur le fil du hasard.

© All images courtesy of the artists and Pro Art Gallery www.ProArtuae.com

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Issue no. 35  

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