Posts Tagged ‘Martin Parr’

MEMORY CITY: A Thank You

April 29, 2012

©Alex Webb, Installation of work-in-progress of "Memory City" (by Alex Webb & Rebecca Norris Webb) at the "House of Pictures" works-in-progress reception at the Visual Studies Workshop, Rochester, NY, Saturday evening, April 28th, 2012

Rebecca and I would like to thank everyone who’s been following our making of “Memory City,” which we now think –– with the addition of one or two more trips to Rochester –– may one day be a small book.  We are hoping to make our second trip this July.

As many of you already know, “Memory City” is connected to a larger Magnum project in Rochester called “House of Pictures,” so we’d like to give a special thanks to my Magnum colleagues who participated in the “House of Pictures” –– Alec Soth, Larry Towell, Susan Meiselas, Paolo Pellegrin, Bruce Gilden, Donovan Wylie, Jim Goldberg, Alessandra Sanguinetti, Chien-Chi Chang, and Martin Parr.

Additionally, we couldn’t have made it this far in our creative journey without the help of a whole community of people: the Visual Studies Workshop, the George Eastman House Museum especially photography curator Alison Nordstrom, Rick Hock and Claire Wearn, the master printer Ed Praus,  the Magnum Photos staff, the photography department at RIT with a special thanks to the photographer Willie Osterman and our invaluable, tireless and enthusiastic production team ––RIT students Madison McKenna, Amanda Webster, Christian Whitworth, and Brenda Bingham –– and, lastly, and perhaps most importantly, all the people of Rochester who were gracious enough to invite us into their homes and into their lives.––Alex Webb


UPCOMING EVENTS: APRIL, MAY & JUNE

MILAN AND BOLOGNA

––FRIDAY, MAY 4, MILAN, ITALY: “Together and Apart: Photographs of Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb,” at Forma, which will simultaneously have Alex’s The Suffering of Light exhibition in the gallery (Slide talk by invitation only, but former students, friends, member of the Two Looks online community, and press are welcome.  Space is limited, so please contact Alex and Rebecca to reserve one of the limited seats: webbnorriswebb@gmail.com)

––SATURDAY, MAY 5TH, MILAN, ITALY:  Two book launches, featuring the work of Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb at the MIA photography festival, 8 pm

––MONDAY, MAY 7, BOLOGNA, ITALY: “Together & Apart: Photographs of Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb. 5 pm

NEW YORK

––THURSDAY, MAY 24, NEW YORK, NY: My Dakota book launch at ICP, May 24″ href=”http://www.icp.org/events/2012/may/24/book-signing-rebecca-webb-norriss-my-dakota” target=”_blank”>My Dakota book launch, party and book signing at ICP (43d and Sixth Ave), 6-7:30.

RAPID CITY, SD

––FRIDAY, JUNE 1, RAPID CITY, SOUTH DAKOTA: “My Dakota” exhibition opening and book party, Dahl Arts Center, 6-8pm.  The exhibition will run until October 13, 2012.

––CHARLOTTESVILLE, VIRGINIA

SATURDAY, JUNE 9,  AT LOOK3 PHOTOGRAPHY FESTIVAL

4-6pm Alex Webb in conversation with noted writer and cultural critic Geoff Dyer

6-7pm: Book signing with Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb at the Second Street Gallery

9pm: “My Dakota” in the WORKS slide show

ADDITIONAL LINKS FOR ALEX AND REBECCA:

See Alex and Rebecca’s photos and others from Magnum’s House of Pictures project in Rochester here.

Read more about Magnum’s House of Pictures project in the New Yorker and see Alex’s photo of the day, April 24th.

Alex’s “The Suffering of Light” exhibition at Forma, Milan, featured in Italian Vogue.


MEMORY CITY: Rochester in 36 Exposures

April 18, 2012

Alex and Rebecca's Kodak Express Heading to Rochester's House of Pictures

Until the end of April, Rebecca and I will be working on a joint project in Rochester, NY, which will be part of a larger Magnum project, “House of Pictures,”  a continuation of their “Postcards from America” project.

As two photographers who have long used Kodak film –– for me, Kodachrome; for Rebecca, Portra –– we both like the idea of  exploring Rochester, a city which has long been home of one of the U.S.’s most famous companies, Eastman Kodak, whose future –– and perhaps the future of film ––  is now in question.  We’re tentatively calling the project, “Memory City: Rochester in 36 Exposures,” and we’ll see where our creative journey leads us.

For those of you who’d like to follow our Rochester project on the blog, we’d greatly appreciate your comments and suggestions and support, which you can post in the comments section at the end of this column. We will also post photographs occasionally on the House of Pictures tumblr site, which is also a good place to see some of the work of the other Magnum photographers involved with the project: Martin Parr, Alec Soth, Susan Meiselas, Paolo Pellegrin, Bruce Gilden, Donovan Wylie, Alessandra Sanguinettii, Larry Towell, and Jim Goldberg, with Chien-Chi Chang documenting the project with a video camera.––Alex Webb

UPCOMING EVENTS: APRIL, MAY & JUNE

NEW YORK

––THURSDAY, MAY 24, NEW YORK, NY: My Dakota book launch at ICP, May 24″ href=”http://www.icp.org/events/2012/may/24/book-signing-rebecca-webb-norriss-my-dakota” target=”_blank”>My Dakota book launch, party and book signing at ICP (43d and Sixth Ave), 6-7:30.

ROCHESTER, MILAN AND BOLOGNA

––THURSDAY, APRIL 26TH, ROCHESTER, NY: “Together & Apart: The Photographs of Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb, Webb Auditorium, RIT, 8pm; free and open to the public.

––SATURDAY, APRIL 28TH, ROCHESTER, NY:  “House of Pictures” slide talk at GEH at 2pm

––FRIDAY, MAY 4, MILAN, ITALY: “Together and Apart: Photographs of Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb,” at Forma, which will simultaneously have Alex’s The Suffering of Light exhibition in the gallery (Invitation only, but former students, friends, member of the Two Looks online community, and press are welcome.  Space is limited, so please contact Alex and Rebecca to reserve one of the limited seats: webbnorriswebb@gmail.com

––SATURDAY, MAY 5TH, MILAN, ITALY:  Two book launches, featuring the work of Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb at the MIA photography festival, 8 pm

––MONDAY, MAY 7, BOLOGNA, ITALY: “Together & Apart: Photographs of Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb. 5 pm

RAPID CITY, SD

––FRIDAY, JUNE 1, RAPID CITY, SOUTH DAKOTA: “My Dakota” exhibition opening and book party, Dahl Arts Center, 6-8pm.  The exhibition will run until October 13, 2012.

––SATURDAY, JUNE 9,  AT LOOK3 PHOTOGRAPHY FESTIVAL, CHARLOTTESVILLE:

4-6pm Alex Webb in conversation with noted writer and cultural critic Geoff Dyer

6-7pm: Book signing with Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb at the Second Street Gallery

LAST CHANCE: Four Exhibitions

January 13, 2012

Alex Webb, Sancti Spiritus, Cuba, 1993, from MFA, Boston, exhibition, "Violet Isle" (with Rebecca Norris Webb) and Aperture's "The Suffering of Light" exhibition

––Alex Webb, “The Suffering of Light,”Aperture, New York, through January 19, 2012

––Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb, “Violet Isle: A Photographic Portrait of Cuba,”MFA, Boston, through Jan. 16, 2012

––Alex Webb, “The Suffering of Light,” @  Stephen Bulger Gallery, Toronto, through Jan. 14, 2012

––Rebecca Norris Webb and other artists, “Winged Shadows: Life Among Birds,” NDMOA, Grand Forks, ND, through Jan. 15, 2012

NEW REVIEWS/ARTICLES

“On Marrying a Photographer,” on Alec Soth’s blog, Little Brown Mushroom, with comments by several photographers and others, including Martin Parr, Alec Soth, Rachel Cartee Soth, Greta Pratt, Zoe Strauss, Alex Webb, and Rebecca Norris Webb.

–“The Suffering of Light” exhibition @ Aperture reviewed in the Village Voice.

–“The Suffering of Light” exhibition reviewed on DLK blog.

––”As Far As an Outsider Can Go,” in the New York Photo Review.

UPCOMING WORKSHOPS WITH ALEX AND REBECCA

“Teaching taught me how little I knew and it forced me to think.  I had to teach to get an education.” –––Harry Callahan, from “Harry Callahan @ 100” at the National Gallery of Art

– PHOTOGRAPHY MASTERCLASS @ THE NATIONAL MUSEUM OF SINGAPORE, Friday evening, March 9, 2012, thru Saturday, March 11, 2012.  An intensive weekend workshop with the Webbs and Radius Books creative director and noted book designer, David Chickey, with an emphasis on the process of intuitive editing and bookmaking, following the process of how long-term projects can develop into books and exhibitions . APPLICATIONS ARE NOW OPEN. TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS WORKSHOP, VISIT THE MAGNUM WEBSITE.  Or, for those on Facebook, please visit the PHOTOGRAPHIC MASTERCLASS AT THE NATIONAL MUSEUM OF SINGAGPORE page. The National Museum of Singapore is a venue partner of the Photography Masterclass.

–WEEKEND WORKSHOP @ APERTURE, NY, Friday evening, March 23, thru Sat., March 25, 2012. Do you know where you’re going next with your photography –– or where it’s taking you?   An intensive weekend workshop with Alex and Rebecca. Check the Aperture  blog for workshop details, such as fee, how to make payment, etc.  Before the Aperture site is live to take workshop applications and  fees online — WHICH WILL HAPPEN EARLY FEBRUARY — you can reserve a space by emailing Anne Lewis of Aperture –– alewis@aperture.org   There is a discount for students and Aperture patrons.

––WEEKEND WORKSHOP IN MILANO @ FORMA; Friday evening, May 4, thru Sunday, May 6th, 2012.  An intensive weekend workshop @ Forma with the Webbs during Alex’s upcoming spring exhibition there, “The Suffering of Light.” Included in the workshop will be a gallery talk by Alex as well as a copy of Alex’s recent survey book of 30 years of his color photographs, “La Sofferenza della Luce,” (Contrasto).  The workshop will be taught in English with Italian translation.  For more information here’s the link.

–FINDING YOUR VISION WORKSHOP @ CAPTION GALLERY, BROOKLYN, NY.  Sunday May 20 thru Friday May 25, 2012.* A week-long photographing and editing workshop where each photographers begins to explore his or her own way of photographing and how to edit intuitively.  Will include exercises, light room tutorials, and a presentation by a noted book editor. APPLICATIONS ARE NOW OPEN.  Early acceptance notification will start on February 29, 2012.  Check the workshop page of the webbnorriswebb website for fees, application process and further details.

*If there is enough interest, we will explore offering a second session of the Finding Your Vision Workshop @ Caption Gallery the week before —  Sunday May 13 thru Friday May 18, 2012.

Rebecca Norris Webb, Havana, 2008, from "Violet Isle" (with Alex Webb) at the MFA, Boston, and "Winged Shadows," at NDMOA, Grand Forks, N.D.

TWO THANKS: Violet Isle

January 24, 2011

Rebecca Norris Webb, "Violet Isle" cover, Radius Books

We have some good news to share:  VIOLET ISLE was selected as one of the “Best Books of 2010” on the Photo-Eye website by independent curator/photography blogger, Elizabeth Avedon.  We’re pleased and honored to be included among such photographers as Alec Soth, Martin Parr, Sally Mann, Lee Friedlander, Tim Hetherington, Taryn Simon, Jean Gaumy, Mark Powers, Jason Fulford, Thomas Demand, David Taylor, Alessandra Sanguinetti, Carl De Keyzer, and others.  To read more about the various authors and books, visit the Photo-Eye site. Thanks so much, Elizabeth.

And thanks again to award-winning Cuban poet, Reina Maria Rodriguez, for allowing us to use her wonderful quote below in VIOLET ISLE.  Recently Reina, who lives in Havana (she’s photographed below), received our gift to her — a copy of our book, whose title was inspired by the title poem of one of Reina’s poetry books. –– Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb


fue una ciudad con puerto

donde ya no se ha ido ni ha vuelto nadie más…

–de “Violet Island” por la poeta cubana, Reina María Rodríguez

once it was a city with a port

where now no one else has come or gone…

–from “Violet Island” by Cuban poet, Reina María Rodríguez

FOTOFORUM: Indelible Image II

January 11, 2010

Because we had so many responses to last month’s FotoForum: The Indelible Image, we decided to run a second column this month.  So for January, we are featuring the indelible image choice of noted Aperture editor Denise Wolff, who has worked with some of the world’s most widely acclaimed photographers, including Mary Ellen Mark, Stephen Shore, Martin Parr, and Eugene Richards.  Originally a photographer herself, Denise is joined by six other photographers from five different countries around the world for this column, all of whom have chosen to write about a photograph that they responded to strongly as young photographers –– an indelible image that still lingers with them today. –– Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb

DENISE WOLFF ON SARA MOON: “Shooting Blind”

Sarah Moon, "The Clock, 1999," from her book, Coincidences

When I first learned to take pictures, I was struck that a photograph doesn’t look like what the eye sees in reality or even through the viewfinder. Technical decisions, such as depth of field and shutter speed, are made largely in anticipation of what the picture will look like. The camera freezes moments that the eye could only glimpse in the fluid nature of continuous time and motion. The mirror pops up to block the view on most 35mm SLR cameras at the moment the film is exposed; something similar happens with a view camera once the film holder is in place. Essentially, at the critical moment the photograph is taken, the photographer is at the height of not seeing. I have always been fascinated by this idea of shooting blind.

I bought Sarah Moon’s Coincidences the same summer I learned to shoot. To me, Moon’s photographs seem not so much guided by what she saw as by what she imagined. It is as if she was shooting with her eyes closed, dreaming rather than seeing. Indeed, in the book, she refers to the moment she takes the images as more of a recognition or calling than a function of the eye. “I believe in miracles when I hear an echo between me and what I see, a resonance … the eye hears before it sees.” Her pictures seem to play with this idea by consistently presenting what can only be seen in photographs. Though often highly staged, her images remain utterly open and dependent on chance. The Type 55 Polaroid film lends another layer of unpredictability to the process as the emulsion leaves traces of the photographic act on the images, highlighting their mediated existence as well as their dreamlike quality. Though the subjects of her images are never clearly defined, one, nonetheless, gets the sense that she captured a moment that can never be seen the same way again.

The Clock, 1999 is the image I remember most from my early days of photographing.  The geometry of the circles and the arrows – always pointing ahead into the future – reference a kind of continuous time. The numbers, removed from the clock (as well as from the faint time line at the center) are near the floor, displaced by the beautiful architecture of the triangle dress. These elemental forms remain quite stationary, permanent, frozen. Amidst them, the motion of the woman/clock’s hands creates a visual impossibility as the circle and axis line appear drawn over her arms. Her dark fingers form a stunning band as they run together with the marks, tracing a new arc. Here, the woman is both time itself and timeless, outside of linear measurement and numbering systems (the basis of our knowledge) through embodying, and thus subsuming, such systems. She represents the physical experience of time that cannot be fully measured or suspended. Here, Moon touches upon a central problem of knowledge and science: how to divide/measure a continuous magnitude into discrete units, how to define something constantly and infinitely evolving. She seems to offer the photograph as almost a proof, acting not unlike the woman/clock. All of this is collapsed into one, discrete image, which acts somewhat like memory itself, lifted up out of the infinite fluidity of unbroken time and reality. At the same time, this photograph will outlast the moment and woman it captured, creating its own kind of continuity, one that also resists being revealed or easily quantified, remaining ultimately mysterious. I think this paradox is at the heart of human understanding, as well as photography.––Denise Wolff

A selection of Sarah Moon’s work at Howard Greenberg Gallery.

JUSTIN PARTYKA ON JOHN COHEN

John Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. John Sams, Combs, Kentucky, 1959

Music brought me to photography. After a few years of being immersed in the music of Bob Dylan, I wanted to know what came before. I discovered the raw authentic tones of bluegrass, early country and blues, and the strange sounding folksongs from what Greil Marcus called “The Old, Weird America” entombed in Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music. I also encountered the work of John Cohen. A musician, sound recordist, photographer, filmmaker, and folklorist, Cohen literally linked all of my musical discoveries together, and his work showed me the way.

In 1998, I purchased Cohen’s CD, Mountain Music of Kentucky. This was a re-release of an LP originally released in 1960, and is a collection of field recordings he made in 1959 in the rural communities around the mining town of Hazard in eastern Kentucky. The haunting songs and tunes I heard pierced me with their melancholy and harsh metallic sounds. This was music out of the mountains from which the livelihoods of the people depended, music that became known as “the high lonesome sound.”

To accompany the recordings, Cohen included detailed notes about the music, people, and places he discovered, and he also included a series of photographs. The photographs show the people and the places, but they go further than that. As the image above reveals, Cohen suggests the sound of the music in these photographs, creating an intimate window into the world of eastern Kentucky.

Like the music, these images are haunting, mysterious and timeless; they embody the endurance of this rural culture, and left me wanting to know more about it. Through John Cohen’s work, I experienced for the first time the powerful impact that a photograph is capable of having.––Justin Partyka

Here is Justin’s website and a link to the trailer of Justin’s film, “My Friend Eric,” about a 99-year-old farmer from East Anglia, UK, and what remains of his traditional agrarian world.

ANIMESH RAY ON HENRI CARTIER-BRESSON

Henri Cartier-Bresson, Athens, 1953

I grew up in India, in not a very affluent family.   Though I did have an Agfa Isopan 120mm uncoupled rangefinder camera, which used to belong to my father, it was difficult to afford to shoot more than one roll of film in six months.  Getting access to serious books of photography was even more difficult.  When I was in college, in 1971 or 1972, I came across in a used bookstore a large hard-bound book of photographs by a man with a double-decker last name.  I am quite sure that it must have had most of his famous photos, but there is one I remember distinctly.  I suppose at that time I was too youthful to worry about time’s irony, yet somehow I found the photo profoundly moving.  It is a rather simple photo, but for me it distills the essence of life’s evanescence.––Animesh Ray

Click here to see a selection of Henri Cartier-Bresson’s work.

Click here to a selection of Animesh’s photographs.

ERICA MCDONALD ON WALKER EVANS

Walker Evans, "Negro Church," South Carolina, 1934

I’ll never forget seeing one of Walker Evans’ images, “Negro Church,” for the first time. I was in high school on a weekend field trip to New York. My class had a museum day, and I was just moving along looking at images and chatting with friends when somehow I came to this image. A surge of energy ran through me, and I felt my body rooted into place, while emotionally and intellectually, I felt transported away. I recall silently saying to myself over and over, “I get it, I understand what he is doing, I think I might be able to do that, too.” What I saw wasn’t just a building, or just a church, it was one man’s connection to a place and a time and a people, and his particular perspective also allowed space for my own experience.

I had been interested in photographing from the time I was very young, but seeing this image was an awakening and a calling to work towards using the medium to create relations amongst the viewer, the viewed, and myself as photographer.––Erica McDonald

Click here to see a selection of Walker Evans’s work.

Erica’s website

RICHARD MARAZZI ON ERNST HAAS

Ernst Haas, Venice, 1955

Here is a shot that inspired me. Back when I was starting out as a photographer, my local library in Canada had few photography books, but one that I kept going back to was by Ernst Haas. I found his images to have a mood and ethereal quality to them, and I especially like the way he used color. This particular shot actually inspired me to begin a long-term project of Venice, a place of my family’s origins.––Richard Marazzi

Click here to see a selection of Ernst Haas’s work.

Richard’s website

DAVID BACHER ON ELLIOTT ERWITT

Elliott Erwitt, New York, 1974

This iconic photo by Elliott Erwitt is one that lingers in my mind and never grows old. It suggests the simplicity of discovering one of life’s magical moments that can unfold on the sidewalk anywhere, even on the sidewalk in your own neighborhood. I have come to appreciate surprising photos like this one that evoke a sense of humor, two elements that embody much of Elliot’s work. I love this chihuahua and always find myself wondering what the rest of the large dog and the owner might look like.

Ahhh…like a nice bottle of red wine or a Mozart sonata, this photo is one of life’s simple pleasures.––David Bacher

Click here to see a selection of Elliott Erwitt’s work.

David’s website

JOHN MASTERS ON HENRI CARTIER-BRESSON

Henri Cartier-Bresson, Brussels, 1932

I have been looking at Cartier-Bresson’s images for decades.  Of all of them, this one has always intrigued me.  There is a surreal quality to this image, and it can be seen as being abstract.  It reminds me that when I remove the subject from its context (through the viewfinder) it becomes something else, something more expressive than the possibly banal event it had been before.––John Masters

John’s website