Photography

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Art Photography

Joana Choumali Embroiders iPhone Photographs as a Healing Meditation

April 4, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Photographer Joana Choumali‘s photographic series Ça va aller translates to “It’s going to be fine,” a common phrase used by people in Côte d’Ivoire to casually reassure each other, even after a deeply traumatic event. Choumali started the project less than a month after the March 2016 Grand-Bassam terrorist attack, when three gunman opened fire at a beach resort an hour away from her home in Abidjan. The images in the series are all taken on her iPhone, and appear more like snapshots rather than portraits. She wanted the subjects to look natural, as if she was scanning the city.

“Three weeks after the attacks, the atmosphere of the little town changed,” said Choumali in a statement about the series. “The sadness is everywhere. A ‘saudade,’ some kind of melancholy. Most of the pictures show people by themselves, walking in the streets or just standing, sitting alone, lost in their thoughts. And empty places.”

Choumali explains that she began embroidering the images on printed canvas as a way to cope with her own sadness. The meditative process has now become engrained in her daily practice as a way for the photographer to relax and concentrate. The brightly colored threads serve as the sentiments she cannot express verbally, and a way to witness and acknowledge the denied trauma of the Grand-Bassam people.

“This work is a way to address the way Ivorian people deal with psychological suffering,” said Choumali. “In Côte d’Ivoire, people don’t discuss their psychological issues, or feelings. A post-traumatic [shock] is considered as weakness or a mental disease. People don’t talk about their feelings, and each conversation is quickly shortened by a resigned “Ça va aller.”

Select pieces from Ça va aller will be exhibited later this spring at the 1-54 Contemporary African Art Fair in New York City. You can see more work from the Ivory Coast-based photographer on her website and Instagram. (via It’s Nice That and African Digital Art)

 

 

 



Art Photography

The Diverse Daily Life of a Ping Pong Table in Germany Photographed by Tomiyasu Hayahisa

March 29, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

In 2011 Tomiyasu Hayahisa started photographing a ping pong table located in a public athletic field across from his dorm in Leipzig, Germany for a series titled TTP. Tomiyasu had first noted the location after observing a white tailed fox perched near the legs of the table, and after waiting several days for the animal to return, he began to photograph the other life forms that congregated or paused near the outdoor game. Rather than spotting the fox, he captured families, partiers, and lonesome daydreamers using the area as a bench or bed.

“At the time I had been living in a student doom in Leipzig and it was possible to photograph from window the table tennis table, how people from different countries use it in their way,” Tomiyasu told Colossal. “And it could be the message of this work that the place could be everywhere.”

If you enjoyed this series, you might also enjoy Yevgeniy Kotenko‘s On the Bench, a project which observed the daily life of a park bench in Ukraine for over a decade. TTP has been shortlisted for the 2018 MACK First Book Award. You can see more of Tomiyasu‘s work on his website. (via This Isn’t Happiness)

 

 



Photography

A New Infrared View of the Dolomites by Paolo Pettigiani Shows Craggy Landscapes in Cotton Candy Colors

March 26, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

26-year old photographer Paolo Pettigiani (previously) has been taking pictures since age 11, and in the last few years has produced several series of eye-popping infrared images. Pettigiani’s most recent work showcases the Dolomites, a craggy mountain range in the northeastern region of his native Italy.

Infrared photography uses a special film or light sensor that processes the usually not-visible wavelengths of infrared light (specifically near-infrared, as opposed to far-infrared, which is used in thermal imaging.) The resulting images from Pettigiani depict the stands of coniferous trees as watermelon-pink, while surfaces that don’t reflect IR light stay more true to their nature hues. You can see more of the artist’s photographs on his website, as well as on Behance and Instagram. Pettigiani also offers prints of his work via Lumas.

 

 



Photography

Streaks of Light Illuminate Hungarian Forests During a Full Moon by David Lados

March 22, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

For his 2014 series New Moon, photographer David Lados captured varying streaks of light slicing through remote areas of Hungarian forests, many specifically staged throughout the Mátra mountain range. To capture the contrast needed for his light trails Lados strictly obeyed lunar cycles, only photographing the illuminated targets during the height of the new moon.

Using this technique Lados was able to create an uncompromised glow from the artificial light source, tracing pathways that extend a few feet to the entire length of a pond. You can purchase select prints from Lados’s series on his Saatchi Art shop, and view day-to-day dispatches from his life and other projects on Instagram. (via Cross Connect)

 

 



Photography

The Acrobatic Entanglements of Everyday Objects by Mauricio Alejo

March 20, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Photographer Mauricio Alejo uses everyday objects to create gravity-defying arrangements within his apartment, staging curious interventions and acrobatic feats on his kitchen counters and filing cabinets. Working within the confines of his living space has allowed Alejo to produce ideas as they come, rather than attempt to find the perfect backdrop for his spontaneous compositions.

“I didn’t always like the apartments I was living in, or better put, I didn’t always like the way some of the places I lived translated into the image,” explained Alejo. “They were somehow random and uninteresting, but I knew that it was just natural to photograph right where the ideas were conceived, besides if I started looking for the ‘right’ place to shoot it was going to be a never ending story.”

This immediacy of ideas has become embedded in the photographer’s practice, even with Alejo’s recent move towards studio-based photography. You can see more of his works on his website and Instagram. (via Ignant)

 

 



History Photography

Over 30,000 Negatives Discovered in Russian Artist’s Attic Reveal a Lifetime of Hidden Photography

March 19, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Russian artist and theater critic Masha Ivashintsova (1942-2000) lived a secret life as a photographer, taking over 30,000 photographs in her lifetime without ever showing a soul. It wasn’t until years after her death in 2000 that her daughter Asya Ivashintsova-Melkumyan stumbled upon her vast collection of negatives while cleaning out the attic. The photographs showcase an astounding look into the inner world of Ivashintsova, while also providing a glimpse of everyday life in Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) from the 1960-1999.

Ivashintosova was heavily engaged in the city’s underground poetry and photography movement, yet never showed anyone her images, poetry, or personal writing during her lifetime. Ivashintsova-Melkumyan shares a quote from one of her mother’s diary entries that hints at the reasoning behind her hidden artistic life, “I loved without memory: is that not an epigraph to the book, which does not exist? I never had a memory for myself, but always for others.”

“I see my mother as a genius,” explains Ivashintsova-Melkumyan, “but she never saw herself as one—and never let anybody else see her for what she really was.”

Some have referred to Ivashintsova as the Russian Vivian Maier, an American photographer and caregiver whose extensive collection of negatives was discovered in Chicago after her death in 2009. A group of close family friends are working to scan the entirety of Ivashintsova’s life’s work. You can view more of her recently discovered images on this website and Instagram specifically created to share her legacy. (via PetaPixel)

 

 



Photography

A Photographic Series of Miniature Faux Fur Landscapes Examines the Myth of the Wild West

March 15, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Waterfall

At first glance, Areca Roe’s photographic series, ‘O Pioneer,’ seems to depict placid vistas of the American West, not dissimilar to what might be seen on a vacationing friend’s Instagram. But on closer examination, Roe’s images are actually miniature scenes, with faux fur comprising the textured landscapes.

The Minnesota-based artist shares with Colossal that she was inspired by photographers who captured persuasive images of the West in the late 1800s, and whose work “helped propel the problematic narrative of Manifest Destiny, but also solidified support for national parks.” She continues, “My photographs are clearly a simulation, a farce, with the fake fur as a reference to the lure of potential bounty as well as the resulting devastation.” You can see more of Roe’s work on her website. She also has created limited edition prints of ‘O Pioneer,’ which are available in her Etsy shop. (via Colossal Submissions)

Badlands

Windmill

Canyon

Lagoon

Coal Mine

Passenger Pigeons

Forest