Out there – great photographs to see in February!

Posted in EXHIBITS/SHOWS, New England, NYC, Other on January 29, 2015 by voxphotographs

These winter months promise some terrific photography shows around the country at galleries near and far…check ‘em out.

 

Untitled, 2014©Brenton Hamilton. See new work by Brenton at Tilt Gallery, February 5-28.

Untitled, 2014©Brenton Hamilton. See new work by Brenton at Tilt Gallery, February 5-28.

 

ARIZONA:

Tilt GalleryBrenton Hamilton: As I Nod to my Influences, I Want to Float, February 5 – 28.

MASSACHUSETTS:

Panopticon GallerySelf-Portraits not #Selfies, January 15 – March 16

Pucker GalleryTony King: Along the Way, February 21 – March 29

INDIANA:

Pictura GalleryDavid Magnussen: Purity, February 6 to March 28

From the series, Purity©David Magnusson. Opening February 6 - March 28 at Pictura Gallery.

From the series, Purity©David Magnusson. Opening February 6 – March 28 at Pictura Gallery.

 

NEW YORK CITY:

Sepia EyeAngelika Sher: Disturbing Beauty through February 21

Yossi Milo GalleryAssaf Shaham, January 15 – February 21

Pace/PaceMacGill - Koudelka – Twelve Panoramas, 1987-2012, January 16 – February 14

 

CALIFORNIA:

Scott Nichols GalleryGroup F.64: Founders and Followers through February 28

Magnolia  Blossom, 1950's©Imogene Cunningham. Group F.64 at Scott Nichols Gallery through February 28.

Magnolia Blossom, 1950’s©Imogene Cunningham. Group F.64 at Scott Nichols Gallery through February 28.

 

Winter in Maine – 6 openings in January kick off The Maine Photo Project!

Posted in EXHIBITS/SHOWS, Maine on January 20, 2015 by voxphotographs

2015 kicks off with a big bang in January – 6 openings of photograph exhibits! If you’ve been hibernating, 2015 is THE MAINE PHOTO PROJECT, so plan on a year of huge riches in photo-based art exhibit and shows. I’ll try and keep up with it here on the VoxPhotographs blog!

University of Maine Museum of Art, BangorDan Estabrook: King & Clown, through March 21

University of New England, PortlandA Gateless Garden, including photographs by Kerry Michaels. Opening Reception: January 20, 5 p.m., through April 12.

Photographs by Kerry Michaels at University of New England Gallery, Portland, through  . Opening January 20 with reception at 5 p.m.

Photographs by Kerry Michaels at University of New England Gallery, Portland, through April 12 . Opening January 20 with reception at 5 p.m.

 

Maine Museum of Photographic Arts - Diary of a River – Solargraphs of the Kennebec River by Johanna Moore. Opening Reception: January 22, 6-8. Through May 22, in Portland.

River Road, Madison 99 Days, 2014©Johanna Moore. At The Glickman Family Library Gallery, USM, Portland, through May 22.

River Road, Madison 99 Days, 2014©Johanna Moore. At The Glickman Family Library Gallery, USM, Portland, through May 22.

 

Danforth Gallery at University of Maine/AugustaUMA Faces: 50 Years/50 Portraits. January 19 – February 20. Opening Reception: January 22, 4:30 – 6:30.

Colby College Museum of Artcurrents/7: Elizabeth Atterbury. January 27 – May 10 in Waterville.

 PhoPa GalleryInside Out: Photographs by Jeffery Becton, Thomas Birtwistle and Sarah Szwajkos. Guest Curator: Susan Danly. January 28 – March 7 in Portland. Opening Reception: Friday, February 6, 5-7.

Apartment Kitchen with Clean Dishes, Moving Out©Sarash Szwajkos. At PhoPa, with Jeffery Becton and Thomas Birtwistle, opening January 28 - March 7.

Apartment Kitchen with Clean Dishes, Moving Out©Sarash Szwajkos. Inside Out, at PhoPa in Portland, with Jeffery Becton and Thomas Birtwistle, opening January 28 – March 7.

At the museums: Winter, 2015

Posted in EXHIBITS/SHOWS, New England, NYC, Other on January 10, 2015 by voxphotographs

 

Untitled, Alabama, 1956©The Gordon Parks Foundation. All Rights Reserved. At High Museum through June 7.

Untitled, Alabama, 1956©The Gordon Parks Foundation. All Rights Reserved. At High Museum through June 7.

 

NEW YORK:

Museum of Modern ArtModern Photographs from the Thomas Walther Collection, 1909-1949 through April 19

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GEORGIA:

High MuseumGordon Parks: Segregation Story opens November 15 – June 7

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CALIFORNIA:

Contemporary Jewish MuseumArnold Newman: Masterclass – October 23 – February 1

Los Angeles Museum of ArtLarry Sultan: Here and Home, through March 22

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MASSACHUSETTS:

Museum of Fine Arts, BostonTruth and Beauty: Pictorialist Photography – through February 22

©Larry Sultan. All Rights Reserved. At Los  Angeles Museum of  Art through March 22, 2015

©Larry Sultan. All Rights Reserved. At Los Angeles Museum of Art through March 22, 2015

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NEW MEXICO:

New Mexico History MuseumPoetics of Light: Pinhole Photography – through March 29

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MISSOURI

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art - American Soldier: Photographs of servicemen and women, January 23 –  June 21

Soldier Birkholz: 353 Days in Iraq, 205  Days in Afghanistan, 2004©Suzanne Opton. All Rights Reserved. At The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art opening January 23 - June 21.

Soldier Birkholz: 353 Days in Iraq, 205 Days in Afghanistan, 2004©Suzanne Opton. All Rights Reserved. At The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art opening January 23 – June 21.

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Paul Strand – he pushed photography into a new realm

Posted in EXHIBITS/SHOWS, Exhibits/Shows, Other, REVIEWS on January 5, 2015 by voxphotographs

I can’t believe I was lucky enough to be in Philadelphia over Christmas and catch up with the 250-image exhibition Paul Strand: Master of Modern Photography at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, which ended January 4. Sometimes you win.

Paul Strand: Master of Modern Photography - at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, through January 4, 1915. I'm at the exhibit and viewing one of Strand's most iconic images, Wall Street, New York, 1915.  This is a vintage 1915 platinum print and worth the trip in itself.

Paul Strand: Master of Modern Photography – at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, ended January 4, 1915. I’m viewing one of Strand’s most iconic images, Wall Street, New York, 1915. This is a vintage 1915 platinum print and worth the trip in itself.

Strand studied photography first with Lewis Hine. Then, after a visit with Alfred Stieglitz at Stieglitz’ NYC gallery, Strand became impassioned about his own voice through photography. But most importantly for every contemporary photographer, Paul Strand took the pictures that make you what you are today.

Again, this is why every serious contemporary photographer should be a student of photo history. Paul Strand was the first to take photographs that had nothing to do with the aesthetics of painting. He was the one who first photographed a picket fence, a still life of pottery and fruit, a street person. It’s difficult for us to imagine these “firsts” in photography – the first image taken from above (Alvin Langdon Coburn), the first radically-angled photograph of a building (Rodchenko). When Stieglitz featured Strand’s work in an issue of Camerawork, the world of soft-focus “art” photography imploded. Strand’s images focused on the relevance of everyday life, the humanity he viewed through the lens, not the pictoral.

White Fence©Paul Strand. All Rights Reserved.

White Fence©Paul Strand. All Rights Reserved.

Back to the exhibit – comprised of 250 images selected from the Museum’s archive of approximately 4,000 prints. It was a terrific overview and a once-in-a-lifetime exhibit for the viewer. But it did confirm that his early works are the game-changers for me, while later series of work, based on his travels to different countries and villages, as well as many long-exposure images of the natural world, are less important to the story of photography.

Strand’s extraordinary portraits could easily be a complete exhibit in themselves, and the exhibit includes many made with his 8×10 view camera, also on view. His early portraits of his wife, Rebecca, remind us of Stieglitz’ portraits of O’Keeffe, and that’s not surprising seeing as the photographers spent a lot of time together.

Young Boy, Gondeville, Charente, France, 1951©Paul Strand. All Rights Reserved.

Young Boy, Gondeville, Charente, France, 1951©Paul Strand. All Rights Reserved.

An image that really struck me was the tiny Workers’ Bicycles below. It is perfect. But when I saw it enlarged (maybe 16×20?) as a print in the gift shop, it had lost everything important. The intimate size of the image in the exhibit transformed the content into a magical viewing experience that the enlargement completely negated. It was an interesting lesson to see once again: sizing images for presentation plays a major role in the image’s success.

Workers' Bicycles, The Po, Luzzara©Paul Strand. All Rights Reserved.

Workers’ Bicycles, The Po, Luzzara©Paul Strand. All Rights Reserved.

 

ditto

This is the size of the original Workers’ Bicycles in the exhibit.

The Philadelphia Museum of Art Strand exhibit taught me much and for photographers, studying Strand’s work should be an ongoing education. Knowing the works of the pioneers of the medium is the first step to any artist finding his/her own unique vision. It prevents the artist from thinking they have invented the wheel, so to speak.

Strand's 8x10 view camera, on exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, through January 4, 2015.

Strand’s 8×10 view camera, on exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, through January 4, 2015.

There’s an extensive catalog for the exhibit. If you didn’t get there in person and you want to see what the life work of a master looks like, make the investment for sure.

Photographs (by women) – at Bates through to March, 2015

Posted in EXHIBITS/SHOWS, Maine on November 18, 2014 by voxphotographs
Porch Dinner, 2014©Claire Seidl. All Rights Reserved. At Bates College Museum of Art through March, 2015.

Porch Dinner, 2014©Claire Seidl. All Rights Reserved. At Bates College Museum of Art through March, 2015.

The photography exhibit at Bates College Museum of Art, Photographs by Women: Recent Additions to the Permanent Collection, features the work of seven photographers from the USA and France. The works on view represents gifts to the Museum of Art in the last 4 years, as well as acquisitions targeted at growing the Museum’s permanent collection of photographs.

Although the “Photographs by Women” exhibit title may seem a bit, hmmm, sexist? dated? off-putting? to you at first, you’ll get over it once you see the exhibit. It’s just a handle and actually a fairly good one for the situation.

Claire Seidl captures the feeling of “Porch Dinner” perfectly in her image (above) – creating a video (very, very long exposure) in a still. It’s thinking outside the box and very successful thinking.

Denise Froehlich’s courageous and forthright series of male nudes is a showstopper and the almost sepia-toned, square images show a level of creativity maturity and risk-taking other photographers should find impressive.

Unknown   I want to go spend time with the book of photos of the Hutterites, Hutterite – A World of Grace (published in 1998) by Kristin Capp. The most interesting image on view from that series was this one of the boy below, and I want to get a sense of whether the body of work as a whole resonates with this intensity for me. I may take a second trip to the exhibit or drop into the Glickman Family Library, 5th floor, at the USM campus off Forest Ave. Did you ever see such a library of photo books?  And MECA has a terrific library of art books including a huge collection of photography books. Anybody can go to either collection and enjoy these resources, and if you have a Maine public library card, you can take many of the books out at MECA.

 

Hutterite, After School, Espanola Colony, WA, 1996©Kristin Capp. All Rights Reserved.

Hutterite, After School, Espanola Colony, WA, 1996©Kristin Capp. All Rights Reserved.

 

For me, the prize of the day were the eight black and white Irina Ionesco portraits. Ionesco got pretty famous after a show of photographs in Paris in 1974, and while these portraits are small (11.5″x9″), they pack an unforgettable punch, and that is a lesson in itself for other photographers. And not just because some of the content is erotic. With photo-based works getting larger and larger thanks to the technology of the digital print, I was grateful to be reminded that some artists’ works are so incredible that size doesn’t enter into your mind at all when you see them.

Untitled, 1975©Irina Ionesco. All Rights Reserved.

Untitled, 1975©Irina Ionesco. All Rights Reserved.

 

I had trouble getting much out of the remaining images by the other photographers (Sally Gall, Donna Ferrato and Susan Moldenhauer), but my sidekick of the day really loved the Ferrato street photography images of NYC. It’s a subjective thing, art appreciation.

So head to Lewiston and see what sticks in your own mind. There are worthy lessons here.

 

Tonee Harbert: Curiosities

Posted in EXHIBITS/SHOWS, Maine on November 3, 2014 by voxphotographs
Untitled (Harbor Crane), 2014©Tonee Harbert. All Rights reserved

Untitled (Harbor Crane), 2014©Tonee Harbert. All Rights reserved

Tonee Harbert, Portland-based photographer, is a curiosity himself.  I well remember his highly publicized photographic essay Elmer Walker: Hermit to Hero from the early/mid 90’s (essay by Carolyn Chute – remember her?) – and I was nowhere near the fine art photography scene in Maine at that time. But his place in that scene seems never to have solidified, and I find that strange.

Harbert’s work is quite fearless and not always an easy “gimme” to the viewer. On the other hand, many of my favorite images of his over the years are an easy entry point into the heart – kind of quietly… astonishing.

His show of 16 works on view at PhoPa Gallery (through December 6), represents ten years of shooting. The variety of presentation styles (face-mounted behind plexi, mounted on aluminum, paper prints) work well together in no small part because they are all framed professionally and in the same style – a significant investment that increases the credibility of a serious artist in my book. The images are all square format, sometimes creating a diptych, and in one piece, a triptych.

Untitled (Bridge Triptych), 2008©Tonee Harbert. All Rights Reserved

Untitled (Bridge Triptych), 2008©Tonee Harbert. All Rights Reserved

The exhibit speaks to Tonee’s image-making “vehicle of choice”: the Diana camera, introduced in the 60’s and manufactured in Hong Kong. Tonee writes that he likes that the Diana “distorts and vignettes” the image, and that its simplicity as an image-maker contrasts starkly “to the digital cameras I use for commercial assignments.”

Subjectively, I have several favorite images in the show, including Untitled (Harbor Crane), 2014 that kicks off this posting. The crowd favorite Untitled (3/4 Tree), 2011 is what fine photography is all about –  you want to chuckle at its absurdity, but then don’t follow through due to the dignity of the piece. The image is too right, doesn’t have a shred of irony in it, thank goodness, and is just pure Harbert – quiet, observant and worth your time.

Untitled (Three Quarter Tree), 2011©Tonee Harbert. All Rights Reserved

Untitled (3/4 Tree), 2011©Tonee Harbert. All Rights Reserved

 

I spent some time looking at this image below – Untitled (Nest), 2014 – but I just could not make out what the object in the water actually was. I finally put my reading glasses on, looked at the title on the label, and returned my gaze to the picture and understood I was looking at the equivalent of a symphony. This is one of the most extraordinary images I have ever felt: it gives you everything and gives you nothing – and you just can’t ask for a better visual experience than this.

 

Untitled (Nest), 2014©Tonee Harbert. All Rights Reserved

Untitled (Nest), 2014©Tonee Harbert. All Rights Reserved

 

Tonee Harbert (www.toneeharbertphoto.com) has had photographs published in National Geographic Traveler, Gourmet, Yankee Magazine, and Metropolitan Home, to name a few. Let’s appreciate that PhoPa is honoring this quietly brilliant voice right here in Portland.

 

Tonee Harbert exhibit notes and the "Diana" camera...

Tonee Harbert exhibit notes and the “Diana” camera…

November!

Posted in EXHIBITS/SHOWS, Maine on November 3, 2014 by voxphotographs
Buoy©Denise Froehlich. All rights reserved

Buoy©Denise Froehlich. All rights reserved. Now through March 2015 at Bates College Museum of Art.

 

Bates College Museum of ArtPhotographs by Women: Recent Additions to the Permanent Collection, through March 21, 2015.

 

Ingrid©Abigail Wellman. Nov. 6-Dec. 24 installation/22 gallery artists at VoxPhotographs.

Ingrid©Abigail Wellman. Nov. 6-Dec. 24 installation/22 gallery artists at VoxPhotographs.

VoxPhotographsGroup Show – 22 Maine artists represented – all photo-based art. Through December 24.

 

PhoPaTonee Harbert: Curiosities, through December 6. See blog posting here.

Untitled (Three Quarter Tree), 2011©Tonee Harbert. All Rights Reserved

Untitled (Three Quarter Tree), 2011©Tonee Harbert. All Rights Reserved

 

Addison Woolley @ 3FishGroup Show – photographs and paintings, through November 29. Opening Reception: November 7, 5-8.

Garden of Delights©Dave Wade. Addison Woolley at 3Fish, through November 28.

Garden of Delights©Dave Wade. Addison Woolley at 3Fish, through November 28.

 

Maine Museum of Photograhic ArtsValeri Nistratov – The Local Identity of Contemporary Euroasia, through December 29.

Enjoy Love©Valeri Nistratov. At the Maine Museum of Photographic Arts, through December 29.

Enjoy Love©Valeri Nistratov. At the Maine Museum of Photographic Arts, through December 29.

 

Maine College of Art, Charles C. Thomas GalleryMark Marchesi, Recent Work, through December 17.

Port Maitland Wharf, Port Maitland, Nova Scotia, 2013©Mark Marchesi at MECA Charles C. Thomas Gallery through December 17.

Port Maitland Wharf, Port Maitland, Nova Scotia, 2013©Mark Marchesi at MECA Charles C. Thomas Gallery through December 17.

 

 

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