Cover image: Erik van der Weijde
Cover image: YounĂ¨s Klouche
Will intelligent surveillance help us to safeguard our need for security?
Image: Michal Florence Schorro & Prune Simon-Vermot
The keyword for this issue is control – in photography; a case of several forms and definitions, a contemporary subject that we can easily call one of the trends of the moment. I have to be honest, when we talk about control, it’s very hard to explore in depth all the meanings and use it can embody, but I felt the need to try or, at least, to understand where and how it can be found in photography, and also how artists include it in their practice. Susan Sontag was already speaking about the role of photography as a tool of control: “Cameras define reality in the two ways essential to the working of an advanced industrial society: as a spectacle (for the masses) and as an object of surveillance (for rulers)”1, and in this short statement we can see all the potential of a medium that can change the perspective of society itself. It might seem obvious to say that to exercise control means to gain the power. And our recent history is full of episodes in which we can see how photography, used in this context, has been crucial to solve situations or unmask others. The control of the artistic production itself in countless situations has been one of the main governments weapon for propaganda. I can think, for instance, about the Swiss case when, at the beginning of the past century, the government asked – or better dictated – the artists to produce pieces of art in order to underline the perfection of the country. This particular case is very interesting because it drastically contributed to create the Swiss culture as we know it today. Going back in time, we can notice in the last few years a strong and big presence of the so-called “artveillance” in photography. In order to create a new vision of the world, artists started to use surveillance cameras, google maps, softwares and devices suitable for monitoring or mapping. We can find several examples of photography projects in which the main – in some cases the only – camera is a computer screen. With the eyes of a spy, artists are catching, observing, discovering stories and facts happening in a part of the world which can be very far away, or very close. What we call “useful photography” crossed the line to become “art photography”. Daniel Rubinstein, trying to answer the question “What is 21st Century Photography? ” on The Photographers’ Gallery blog, suggests an interesting reading on our time “The demise of the industrial age is curtains for the spectacle of representation: visual surveillance is replaced with predictive policing, industrial processes replaced with trading algorithms, armies replaced with remote controlled killer
1 Sontag, Susan, On Photography, Penguin Books, London, 1977 2 Rubinstein, Daniel, What is 21st Century Photography?, posted on July 3, The Photographers’ Gallery Blog. http://thephotographersgalleryblog.org.uk/2015/07/03/whatis 21stcenturyphotography/ 3 Ibid.
Salvatore Vitale, Editor in Chief
robots and perspectival geometry replaced with the flat topology of the computer screen.”2 The way we approach, watch and interact with the world is directing us to take a distance from it, generating a vision that is getting more and more objective, in which we try to leave as little as possible space to the randomness. We want (to) control. But there are many other aspects on the matter to consider. I’ve been discussing a lot about it with my colleagues at YET magazine, and we finally decided it was time to work on it. We analysed the situation, did a lengthy and thorough research, and came to the conclusion that an issue about control was needed. As I was stating previously, on one side photography has been used since its beginnings as a tool of control and surveillance by governments, political and military organizations. During the Twentieth Century, this raised important issues about the privacy of the individual, civil rights and the veracity of the photographic document – issues that are becoming more urgent because of the growing ubiquity and sophistication of technologies to record reality. But, on the other side, the visual practice of photography is assessed in greater extent depending on the context of use and presentation, and most of all it is subject to dynamics of dissemination and sharing beyond its creation. This condition subtracts the product from the total supervision of the author, making the photographic image an autonomous body, and potentially out of control. Here another important and contemporary aspect comes out: how can we trace, in the online era, the life of an image? It’s funny, in a way, to think about the several uses we can do of a single image. We can put it out of its context in order to give it the opposite meaning it was supposed to carry. We tried to study all these possible variations in order to give back a broad analysis of the current situation. The deeper we were getting in, the more we were finding new ways and possibilities to talk about it. The moment we found ourselves close to control the content, we were losing control again. Anyway, soon you will be able to see where this process brought us. Here is another quote by Daniel Rubinstein which suggests a very interesting answer to that question I mentioned earlier “In short, 21st Century Photography is not the representation of the world, but the exploration of the labor practices that shape this world through mass-production, computation, self-replication and pattern recognition. Through it we come to understand that the “real world” is nothing more than so much information plucked out of chaos: the randomised and chaotic conflation of bits of matter, strands of DNA, sub-atomic particles and computer code.”3
I TRUST MAGNUM
Younès Klouche II YOU HAVEN’T SEEN THEIR FACES
14 — 29
Kurt Caviezel VII
34 — 47
THE BANNER BOOK
Adrien Missika IV THIS IS NOT MY WIFE
51 — 63
68 — 83
From Freemasonry in Switzerland, p.99
Erik van der Weijde
V FREEMASONRY IN SWITZERLAND
132 — 147
From The Banner Book, p.135
122 — 131
156 — 169
SATELLITE COLLECTIONS 170 — 183
Jenny Odell 98— 115
Michal Florence Schorro & Prune Simon-Vermot
190 — 205
FEATURED CONTENTS OPENING WORDS
EARLY WORKS = EARLY WORKS
03 — 05
Interview with Emmanuel Crivelli
116 — 121
148 — 155
by Paola Paleari
30 — 33
by Colin Pantall AMEXICA
A DAY WITH ANOUK KRUITHOF
by Erik Kessels 48 — 50
COPY, CONTROL, PASTE: 184 — 189 THE DIS-PLEASURE(S) OF ANONYMOUS PHOTOGRAPHY
by Brad Feuerhelm
GAINING CONTROL VS LOSING CONTROL
Federica Chiocchetti in conversation with Simon Karlstetter and Salvatore Vitale
From Amexica, p.53
THE BEAUTIFUL FRAME
64 — 66
ALL THAT IS SOLID MELTS INTO AIR
84 — 91
92 — 97
by Chiara Fanetti
206 — 215
Book Review by Darren Campion
From Wonder, p.154
by Delphine Bedel
Yet magazine, Editorial offices Lugano, Switzerland firstname.lastname@example.org www. yet-magazine.com YET magazine – Editor in Chief Salvatore Vitale – Deputy Editor Paola Paleari – Art Director Nicolas Polli – Online Editor Elena Vaninetti – Photo Editors Editorial Staff – Graphic Designer Simon Mager Nicolas Polli – Web Designer Leonardo Angelucci – Sales Manager Davide Morotti – Translations Zoe Casati
Authors – Lewis Chaplin – Kurt Caviezel – Emmanuel Crivelli – Esther Hovers – Younès Klouche – Anouk Kruithof – Sasha Kurmaz – Daniel Mayrit – Adrien Missika – Jenny Odell – Michal Florence Schorro & Prune Simon–Vermot – Erik van der Weijde Contributors – Delphine Bedel – Darren Campion – Federica Chiocchetti – Mariachiara Di Trapani – Chiara Fanetti – Brad Feuerhelm – Simon Karlstetter – Erik Kessels – Colin Pantall
Copyright Yet magazine, Lugano, 2015 All rights reserved.
Typefaces – Suisse Int’l Swisstypefaces.com – New Fournier François Rappo
Inside Issue 09 – Front Cover Younès Klouche Erik van der Weijde – Back Cover Esther Hovers Kurt Caviezel
Printing Salvioni Arti Grafiche, Printed in Switzerland With the support of Salvioni Arti Grafiche, www.salvioni.ch
With the support of Cantone Ticino from the Federal Bureau for the safeguard and promotion of Italian language and culture. The materials may not be copied, downloaded, reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed or published without an explicit prior written permission of YET magazine, and/or in the case of third party materials, the copyright holder of that material. Ownership and intellectual property rights (i.e copyrights, trademarks, trade name right) of all materials, such as texts, data, photos and logos contained in YET magazine shall belong to the publisher. The materials are protected by copyright law worldwide.
BIOGRAPHIES Lewis Chaplin www.lewischaplin.com Lewis Chaplin is an artist and publisher from London. Alongside Sarah P-Espenon, Chaplin runs Loose Joints, an artists’ publisher and design studio. Chaplin co-ran Fourteen Nineteen from 2009 to 2014, a project dedicated to publishing engaging young photography. Interested in an anthropological approach to images, his most recent artist book is 2041, published by Here Press.
photo zines. Nevertheless, he still describes his works as “photographic” even in case he does not use photography as a medium. Jenny Odell www.jennyodell.com Jenny Odell is an interdisciplinary artist who makes work for and of the internet, often utilizing Google satellite imagery in an attempt to defamiliarize the seemingly banal. Because her practice exists at the intersection of aesthetics and research, she has several times been compared to a natural scientist (specifically, a lepidopterist). Odell’s work has been featured in TIME’s LightBox, WIRED, The Atlantic, The Economist, and several Gestalten books. It has been exhibited locally as well as internationally, at Les Recontres d’Arles, Fotomuseum Antwerpen, the New York Public Library, the Google Headquarters in Mountain View, CA, and East Wing in Dubai. Odell is a Bay Area native and currently teaches internet art and digital/physical design at Stanford University.
Daniel Mayrit www.danielmayrit.com Daniel Mayrit was born in Madrid (Spain) in 1985. He graduated in Media Sciences from the Complutense University of Madrid. Then spent a couple of years in Copenhagen (Denmark) studying at the Copenhagen University prior to his moving to London (UK) where he graduated in Photographic Arts at the University of Westminster. He moved back to Madrid after being awarded a scholarship for his MA Photography at EFTI Photography School. He is currently based in Madrid. Daniel Mayrit is a photography teacher at LENS Photography School, in Madrid (Spain). He is also a visiting lecturer at Universidad de Navarra (Spain), Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Spain), HKU Utrecht (Netherlands), KABK The Hague (Netherlands) and AKV-St. Joost Breda (Netherlands)
Esther Hovers www.estherhovers.nl Esther Hovers (Born in 1991 in Amsterdam) graduated from the Royal Academy of Art of The Hague. In her work, she is interested in how political power is influential in public space through urban planning. In 2015, she won the Startpoint Prize.
Erik van der Weijde www.erikvanderweijde.com Erik van der Weijde was born in Dordrecht, NL, 1977. He lives and works in Natal, BR. He is the founder of the publishing house 4478zine. His work has been exhibited worldwide.
Micheal Florence Schorro www.michalschorro.ch Michal Florence Schorro (1987, Männerdorf CH) is an independent photographers who lives and works in Bruxelles (BE). After her Visual Kommunikation BA at the Hochschule der Künste Bern in 2013 she graduated with the Master in Art Direction at ECAL (Lausanne). During her studies she wins the Young Talents Award by Casino Barrière Montreux Foundation. Her work has been exhibited in several festival such as Les journées photographiques de Biel/Bienne, Auswahl/Selection du Fotoforum Pasquart, Bieler Fotodays and Vfg Nachwuchsförderpreis. Her work is also part of Fotografie, Film und Video collection fo Kunstmuseums Bern. In 2015 she wins the Atelier Suisse de Bruxelles residency.
Kurt Caviezel www.kurtcaviezel.ch Kurt Caviezel (Switzerland, 1964) lives and works as an independent artist in Zürich, Switzerland. His work was awarded the Manor Art Prize in 2002, and he won the Award of the UBS Culture Foundation in 2010. Kurt Caviezel has published the photobooks Red Light (2000) and Points of View (2002). His book The Encyclopedia of Kurt Caviezel was published in 2014 by Rorhof, on the occasion of his exhibition at the Italian Galerie Foto-Forum.
Prune Simon-Vermot www.simonvermot.ch Prune Simon-Vermot (CH) Born in La Chaux-de-Fonds in 1987 is a Swiss based photographer. After attending the Blaise Cendrars High school in La Chaux-de-Fonds (2002-2005) she moves toward studies at HEAD Geneva (2006-2010). Thereafter she assisted the Lausanne based photographer Matthew Gafsou for a few months.
Sasha Kurmaz www.sashakurmaz.com Sasha Kurmaz (1986, Ukraine) lives and works in Kiev. He holds a Bachelor in design from the Ukrainian State Academy of Art in Kiev. Kurmaz works with photography, public interaction, video, painting, and produces
BIOGRAPHIES Seeking to refine her practice of photography she entered the ECAL (ecole cantonale d'art de Lausanne) in a Master degree of Art Direction (2011-2013). In 2012 she was selected for a residency program in Deauville (France). In July 2013 she was awarded the execal prize (which rewards graduate students for a particularly remarkable work). In October 2013 she was selected by the Wallpaper Graduate Directory 2014 which presents a selection of worldwide influential photographers of tomorrow. Her work is part of several institutional, public or private art collections such as the city of Deauville’s art collection or the BCV’s (Vaud’s Cantonal bank) art collection. Since 2011 she has participated in various groups and solo exhibitions. Since August 2013 she's an assistant in the Master section of the ecal’s Art Direction. Brad Feuerhelm www.americansuburbx.com Brad Feuerhelm (1977) is a London based, American collector and dealer in vernacular photography. He is also editor of American Suburb X and a writer on photography for such publications as 1000 Words Photography, The British Journal of Photography and Eyemazing. Through exhibitions and publications, he collaborates with artists using his collection as a source for new artist-books or as a starting point for organizing exhibitions. Simon Karlstetter www.simonkarlstetter.de www.dergreif-online.de Simon Karlstetter, born 1985, is an artist, musician and cultural entrepreneur who lives and works in Augsburg and Munich, Germany. He is mainly using photography, drawing, manual printing-techniques, performance, music and sound in his works. He is interested in subjects such as time, society, relationship, technology, their inherent borders, connections, rhythms, speed, repetitive part. He is the founder and one of the artistic directors of the internationally renowned project for photography and literature Der Greif, as well as a co-founder of the interdisciplinary artist-collective Studio Furio, that unites dance, theatre, music and media art. He is giving lectures and talks about his work. Delphine Bedel www.delphinebedel.com Dephine Bedel is a researcher, publisher, artist and curator specialised in emerging publishing practice and photography. Founder of Amsterdam Art/Book Fair and Meta/ Books, a publishing and research platform. Her work is shown internationally. She regularly contributes to books and magazines, and is a frequent speaker in international conferences and seminars, including Centre Pompidou,
Paris, NGBK, Berlin, Pro-Helvetia, Zurich, Chelsea College of Art and Design London, De Appel, Amsterdam, etc. Currently PhD researcher at Leiden University, her thesis focuses on Publishing as Artistic Practice – From hard Copy to Software Culture. Bedel curated international exhibitions and screenings, among others the path-breaking trilogy on postcolonialism Beyond Paradise, at Stedelijk Museum Bureau Amsterdam (with Ayako Yoshimura) in 2008, Shared History / Decolonising the Image at W139 and Arti & Amicitiae, Amsterdam 2006, and The Experience of Atopia Breda Photo 2008. Erik Kessels www.kesselskramerpublishing.com Erik Kessels (1966) was born in Roermond – close to the border of Belgium. He grew up in a small village. When he found out that the most creative job in town was window dresser, that’s what he wanted to become. Kessels went to Sint Lucas in Boxtel to study window dressing, decorating and advertising. There he found out that advertising was more interesting, so he started as ad illustrator at Ogilvy & Mather Eindhoven, while in the evenings attending the Academy of Arts. After Ogilvy, Kessels worked at Kuipers & Schouten and Chiat/Day London, with creative partner Johan Kramer. In 1996 the agency KesselsKramer was founded in Amsterdam. Today it is renowned all over the world. Next to his job as advertiser, Kessels loves photography; he is collector, curator, publisher and magazine editor. Younès Klouche www.younes.klouche.com Born in Lausanne, Younès Klouche studies photography at ECAL where he graduates in 2015. Threw his work he looks for solutions to re-define the documentary genre thanks to a conceptual and reflexive approach. His projects are mainly in the book form but also installatives and are shown in collectives exhibitions in Musée de l’Élysée, the Bienne Photoforum, Art Bärtschi gallery or the Tate Modern’s screening room. Federica Chiocchetti www.photocaptionist.com Federica Chiocchetti is a PhD researcher in photography and fictions at the University of Westminster in London. She is the founder and director of the photocaptionist.com, a photo-literary platform that combines words and images. Chiocchetti is a photography consultant, writer and independent curator, currently working on an exhibition around the theme of WW1 & the archive, featuring material from the Archive of Modern Conflict, for the Hungarian Month of Photography in Budapest in Novem-
BIOGRAPHIES ber 2014. She writes about photography and photobooks for several publications, in both print and online, including MAPP Editions, Emaho, Photobookstore.co.uk, The Photographers’ Gallery Blog, Objektiv, 1000 Words Magazine and Café-Crème. Previously she was co-director of Slideluck London. In that capacity she co-curated a slideshow for Encontros da Imagem 2013, art-directed and co-curated Hungry Still, Slideluck London retrospective exhibition at QAUD and photo-cook-book, produced in partnership with FORMAT Festival (Derby, UK) and the Factory of Akina Books. She was also coordinator & assistant curator of FORMAT Festival. Colin Pantall www.colinpantall.com Colin Pantall is a writer, photographer and lecturer based in Bath, England. His photography is about childhood and the mythologies of family identity. A senior lecturer in photography at the University of South Wales in Newport, he writes about photography for British Journal of Photography, Royal Photographic Society's RPS Journal and Photo Eye, and is a photography blogger. Anouk Kruithof www.anoukkruithof.nl Anouk Kruithof (1981) is a Dutch artist based in New York. Her multilayered, interdisciplinary approach takes the form of photographs, sculptures, artist-books, installations, texts, printed take away ephemera, video and performance. Her work explores and questions the philosophy and physicality of photography. Her installation Subconscious Travelling was included in MoMA’s New Photography exhibition Ocean of Images. Recently a solo exhibition Sweaty Sculptures was shown at Green is Gold during KopenHagen Art Week and AHEAD (version 1) at FOUR A.M. in New York and #EVIDENCE, a new project is on currently on view at BoetzelaerINispen in Amsterdam. Kruithof’s tenth artist-book AUTOMAGIC will be co-published with the Spanish art-book publisher Editorial RM in 2016. Her work has been exhibited worldwide. Kruithof is also co-creator, director and jury member of the new Anamorphosis Prize, which award $10,000, no strings attached, to the creator of the best self-published photo-book from the previous year. The prize was launched for the first time in spring 2015.
The work by Adrien Missika, who portrays himself as a “professional tourist” is to be found at the meeting point of travel experience and exotic representation, advertising iconography and subjective involvement. Through a wide range of media, from photography, video, to sculpture and installation, the artist records his finds encountered during travels to the USA, Hawaii, Turkmenistan, India, Egypt, Russia, Lebanon, Brazil, to name a few. The work by Missika challenges, as much as it plays with, the vocabulary of advertising and visual systems developed by the travel industry. Advertising is nourished by fetishes and totems encouraging exotic perceptions and reducing this sought after unknown to a certain number of timeless signs like palm trees, waves, sun, that form caricatural, partial, if not populist items. Darren Campion www.theincoherentlight.com Darren Campion is a writer on photography, with occasional digressions into contemporary art and related topics. Since 2009 he has maintained The Incoherent Light, which is a blog dedicated to exploring various perspectives on photography. He is a frequent contributor to several publications, most notably Super Massive Black Hole, Of the Afternoon and Paper Journal, where he has a regular series of features. Emmanuel Crivelli www.dualroom.ch Born in Switzerland in 1985, Emmanuel Crivelli attends Graphic Design at ECAL/ Ecole cantonale d’art de Lausanne, where he gets his diploma in 2008. He’s cofounder of Dorade, a Swiss-French magazine that deals with arts, fashion and photography. In 2012 he wins the Swiss Design Award with this project. In 2010 he founds the graphic studio Dual Room, which deals with graphic design mainly in the cultural field. In 2014 he creates POV Paper, a publication based in Switzerland and Germany on sexuality. The edition wins the Essence 15 – Best of Swiss Graphic Design prize. Since 2015, Emannuel has been teaching graphic design at different universities in Switzerland and abroad.
Adrien Missika www.adrienmissika.com Adrien Missika was born in 1981 in Paris and graduated in 2007 from the ECAL in Lausanne. He won already different art and design prices like the Guggenheim Foundation Prize. Nowadays he lives and works in Berlin.
masterpiece deserves to be framed. It is also naive to believe that in all those frames there are only cutting-edge researches or examples of spontaneity or new views on the contemporary world. To meet such a huge demand for content to be included in all these events, some compromises on the formal, technical or content level must be inevitably accepted. This lowering of the bar by any organizer is a further scratch in the relationship of trust between the two parties we have initially taken into consideration: the festival and the public. If the public might feel harmed by this reduced quality, what would the pros say? Certainly at this point the voice choir would break, forming two teams: the included and the excluded. The first may have waived in their hearts and let it go, having benefited from the situation or simply not been damaged by it. The more honest or more devoted to the quality of the work, to the balance of the market and to the simple but universal concept of meritocracy, may react negatively or critically. The second deployment, the one of the excluded, is, almost by law, entitled to a stance. Yet, even in this group, the intellectual honesty should prevail before the instinctive
j’accuse, especially if the suspects go to unfairly tarnish the aforementioned authority – in a word, “reputation” – of an event such as a festival of photography. “Who controls the controllers ... that control the controllers ...?” And so on ad infinitum? Expertise, authority, honesty, commitment: these are all qualities that come to life (they exist) only in a context of pure truth, which is composed of two essential elements: the facts (an objective quality), and the total absence of self-attribution of these characteristics. To put it simply, it is the others who identify in a professional, in a festival or in a competition the qualities mentioned above. Again: honesty and trust. Trust that we give by recognizing a mandate to a person, who can then manage a form of illuminated control. Is this not the same principle that stands at the basis of the ideally highest form of policy? The concession granted to deserving people to operate a selection, a decision, a control in the name of us all? Rights and duties, however. Of the individuals and of the community. If this festival or that contest deserved to be elected as representative of the professionalism and the art of photography in the world, you have to let it take its time to “work for us”. The time to experiment, change, make mistakes, always in the interests of us “contributors”. It will also be a clear advantage for it to allow its audience to interact as they please, without presuming of being in front of a passive herd to educate. All of us are attracted by a frame, because like an arrow it invites us to look at a given point, a specific corner of the world. It will be our right (and yes, why not, even duty) to see what we want to see, or believe it is right to see. It will also be our commitment to relate what we are subjected to with the surrounding context, both the artistic and the historical one, the social and the personal: it is the viewer who completes the work (cit.), the artist can show him the most interesting path. What a festival, an exhibition, a film, a book, a picture does is to propose, not
to command. It brings order when chaos creates confusion, controlling in an “enlightened” rather than “dictatorial” way. It gives an outline that highlights rather than creating barriers. To claim that a work, a series or a photographic exhibition can be uniquely accepted, excluding any interpretation other than the predicted one, is not only foolish but also arrogant. Since two subjects interact with each other, endless possibilities of interpretation, vision, reception open up. All of them are legitimate in their existence. Maybe democracy is not the perfect form of government, but it will always be the best choice over dictatorship.
1 Benjamin, Walter, The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction (or Reproducibility), 1936
In our perfection/ obsessed culture we shy away from errors and that is, in my humble opinion, a disaster
Photography by Erik van der Weijde Text by Mariachiara Di Trapani www.erikvanderweijde.com
68 â€” 83
THIS IS NOT MY WIFE
Erik van der Weijde
This is not my beautiful wife! Letting the days go by / let the water hold me down Letting the days go by / water flowing underground
In each series, the wise use of photographic practice transforms composition and perspective into tools able to tell the subjects in a visual language that overlaps, within a unique whole, suggestions of opposite meanings as ordinary and exceptional, tragic and comic, lawful and forbidden, ingenuity and malice.
Once in a lifetime is not only a song by Talking Heads. “Letting the days go by / water flowing underground” are not just the lines of a lyrics. They are also the most The author creates photographs that can suitable words to describe the artistic influence the perception of the observer research of photographer Erik van der Weijde. and overcome preconceived ideas and prejudices. A visual experience that, like in an Through a recognizable, “purely documen- intimate epiphany, casts a different light on tary” and ironical photographic style, the details and aspects of everyday life. work of the prolific Dutch artist reveals the many aspects hidden in the reality around In the series This is not my wife, Erik van der us. His lens seduces the viewer with a sense Weijde portrays his wife Ana in different of suspense consisting of a double perposes and attitudes: in the sweetness of spective that allows you to simultaneously motherhood, in the spontaneous smile of a touch the surface and the hidden beauty young woman, in the sensuality of seducof things. tress, in her dreamy mood, Ana appears always different as Vitangelo Moscarda in In the photographic series by Erik van der the novel One, No One and One Hundred Weijde – most of them in black and white Thousand by Luigi Pirandello. Similarly, – each photo doesn’t correspond to an image Erik van der Weijde shapes the portrayed in its own right, but is rather an element subjects in such a way to show them always of a creative process that develops and ends different through the photographic practice. within a publishing activity (over forty works, including magazines and fanzines, All his work is an invitation to us viewers published in twelve years of artistic to observe with greater sensitivity and to career) that is the final part of a long project. always give a new attention to the world that we think we know. This makes any photoThe family portraits dedicated to his wife Ana graph “iconic, unique and universal”. and his son Caetano alternate with historiChanging perspective and opening up to a cal themes designed to investigate aspects freedom of thought and vision is a natural such as the Hitler’s National Socialism, consequence. In this way, each image by the phenomenon of prostitution, the archi- the artist becomes the space of a question tecture and the urban landscape of Brazil: in black and white, waiting for our multiple just some of the subjects that the artist, answers. through his lens, transforms into an opportunity to reveal the oxymorons of life.
work has revolved around unreliable narratives of power – is this, then, just another mode of staging? If so, its elaboration is impressive, indeed nearly faultless. The only nagging omission is that Bourouissa’s role in eliciting the images, in terms of directions or specific requests, is not made even more explicit in how the book is put together as this would undoubtedly have further clarified the relationship between the framing narrative and the experience itself. With Temps Mort, Bourouissa is bringing together two seemingly distinct areas of experience, one that is relatively new, the increasingly ubiquitous form of telecommunications, and one that is, even in its modern form, relatively old – disciplinary incarceration. While, on first appearances, he is simply using one to describe the other, it would be a mistake to assume that is really all he’s doing with the form of the work, which isn’t and can’t be neutral. By using what is (probably) a smuggled and contraband mobile phone to create a sketch of prison life from an inside perspective, he is highlighting the essential aspect of imprisonment, which is cut the prisoner off from the “outside” world, the loss of citizenship and individuality. We can also understand the effect of this strategy as acting counter to the tendency of all power structures to make their operations invisible and unaccountable. Prison is in many ways the archetypal structure that power repeats everywhere and by showing it in this way, the question underlying the work is the extent to which the mesh of data that now ensnares us all is related to the disciplinary role of the prison, precisely at the moment when that control is being extended outside the walls of the actual institution to encompass society as a whole.
Review Darren Campion
All images by Études Studio
Images by Mohamed Bourouissa in collaboration with Al (FR) Text by Magali Jauffret Published by Études Books and Kalel Mennour, Paris Edited and designed by Études Studio Specificities
First edition, 1000 copies January 2014, Printed in EU 140 pages full colour offset 24x33 cm White cover with embossing on front, spine and back Language: English / French ISBN 978-2-36962-001-3
Image from the series Album Beauty ÂŠ Erik Kessels
There are certain things that we as humans instinctively avoid: violence; confrontations; daytime television; bears and losing control. Our greatest desire is to do just that: controlling and trying to steer clear of any and all complications in our daily lives. Our greatest misfortune is, that with all the balls we juggle frantically in life, it is impossible to achieve. Nowadays most photography is portraying perfection. Contemporary popular culture is drowning under a tidal wave of superficiality and overperfection. Posed, polished and controlled. As if it were a reflection of our endless search for clarity and calmness and an antidote for the chaos in our lives. Technology allows us to refine the desired illusion of perfection even more. Digital photography has created an abundance of images. We shoot and shoot until we get it right. The imperfect pictures get deleted and the good ones get a filter or a touchup. In our perfection–obsessed culture we shy away from errors and that is, in my humble opinion, a disaster. No one is perfect and that’s something that should be celebrated and embraced. It might sound strange but when everything is perfect, there is no creativity anymore. We grow up being rewarded for drawing between the lines, sitting straight and keeping our mouths shut. We’re all taught to strive for neatness and perfection. And above all we are taught to be careful. As a result most people try to stand out by doing their very best, by playing save and by trying to be perfect. But guess what? That’s exactly what everyone else is doing. That’s why letting go of the firm grip we try to have on our work (and life on general) is so very liberating. Losing control, complications, confusion and accidents should be embraced and loved, not avoided or deleted. Less control adds tension, surprise and excitement. It brings unexpected beauty to life – and therefore also to photography.
Images from the series In Almost Every Picture ÂŠ Erik Kessels
Images from the series Wonder ÂŠ Erik Kessels
Photography has been used since its beginnings as a tool of control and supervision by government, political and military organizations. Dur...
Published on Dec 21, 2015
Photography has been used since its beginnings as a tool of control and supervision by government, political and military organizations. Dur...