Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Places, Strange and Quiet.

Places, Strange and Quiet. By Wim Wenders. Hatje Cantz, 2011. 124 pp., illustrated throughout, 17,1x20,5cm. Images from here.

Book description:

'You only find what you’re looking for'.

" 'When you travel a lot, and when you love to just wander around and get lost, you can end up in the strangest spots. … I don’t know, it must be some sort of built-in radar that often directs me to places that are strangely quiet, or quietly strange'.

Wim Wenders - painter, actor, writer, and one of the most successful contemporary filmmakers around - has assembled a fascinating series of large-scale photographs taken from 1983 to 2011 in countries all over the world.

From his iconic images of exteriors and buildings to his panoramic depictions of towns and landscapes, this book presents the full range of Wenders’s photography."

Friday, June 20, 2014

Glad midsommar!

 Midsummer images from here.

Glad midsommar! (Happy Midsummer!).

"In modern Sweden, Midsummer's Eve and Midsummer's Day (Midsommarafton and Midsommardagen) [...] is arguably the most important holiday of the year, and one of the most uniquely Swedish in the way it is celebrated, even if it has been influenced by other countries long ago.

The main celebrations take place on the Friday, and the traditional events include raising and dancing around a huge maypole. One typical dance is the frog dance. Before the maypole is raised, greens and flowers are collected and used to cover the entire pole.

Raising and dancing around a maypole (majstång or midsommarstång) is an activity that attracts families and many others. People dancing around the pole listen to traditional music and many wear traditional folk costumes. The year's first potatoes, pickled herring, sour cream, and possibly the first strawberries of the season are on the menu. Drinking songs are also important at this feast, and many drink heavily.

Because Midsummer was thought to be one of the times of the year when magic was strongest, it was considered a good night to perform rituals to look into the future. Traditionally, young people pick bouquets of seven or nine different flowers and put them under their pillow in the hope of dreaming about their future spouse. In the past it was believed that herbs picked at Midsummer were highly potent, and water from springs could bring good health. Greenery placed over houses and barns were supposed to bring good fortune and health to people and livestock; this old tradition of decorating with greens continues, even though most don't take it seriously."

To learn more about the Swedish Midsummer traditions continue reading here or here for example.

Sunday, June 08, 2014

Leap Toward Yourself.

Leap Toward Yourself. By Sharon Ya'ari. Steidl and Tel Aviv Museum of Art, 2013. 264 pp., illustrated throughout, 8,5x10,5".

Book description:

" 'I like being able to observe something over a long period of time, unselfconsciously admiring the complex circumstances by which it had come into being.
The images have a story, usually one related to existence and near-extinction'.
- Sharon Ya’ari.

This book presents photographs spanning Sharon Ya’ari’s entire creative career, focusing on his recent works. It is published in conjunction with a major exhibition of Ya’ari’s work at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, featuring a comprehensive selection of his photographs.

Sharon Ya’ari does not seek unusual moments, special places or unique subjects. His photographs offer an intimate look at the commonplace and familiar, making the viewer take pause and observe closely. He does not depict climactic moments; rather, he stops and photographs things that appear to him along the way, thereby conferring permanence on a particular time and place.

Ya’ari’s images summon a multilayered reading, combining local, historical references on the one hand and conceptual references to the medium of photography and to the history of art on the other."

Published to coincide with the 2013-2014 Tel Aviv Museum of Art Exhibition 'Sharon Ya’ari: Leap Toward Yourself'.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

"Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud"

Maya Angelou (source for image).

Rest in peace Maya Angelou. You've done so much for all of us, you will be missed.
More, more, more, more.


Friday, May 23, 2014

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Space Conquerers!

Space Conquerers! Amc2 Journal Issue 6. Edited by AMC, Cristina de Middel and Thomas Mailaender. AMC Books, 2013. 32 pp., illustrated throughout, 30x37cm. Images from here

Book description:

"The first Earth-born creature to enter space was Laika, a stray dog from Moscow that blasted off aboard Sputnik 2 on 3 November 1957, heralding the beginning of the space race and an associated propaganda war between the two superpowers of the era, the Soviet Union and the United States.

Edited by the Archive of Modern Conflict together with Christina de Middel and Thomas Mailander, this issue of Amc2 journal contains a cross-section of some of the space-race related images held by the Archive."

I've previously also featured issue 1 of Amc2 journal.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Birds Have Wings.

Birds Have Wings. One Picture Book #77. By Carol E. Richards. Nazraeli Press, 2013. 16 pp., illustrated throughout, 5,5x7,25". With one original print. Images from here.

One Picture Book is an ongoing series of limited edition artists' books published by Nazraeli Press, which I've previously written about here, here and here for example.

The artist is asked to create a book based on one image or series of connected images, from their previous work. The hardcover edition is limited to 500 and contains an original print by the artist.

Book description:

"Having difficulty identifying a particular species of bird through her spotting scope, Carol E. Richards took a photograph through the lens to assist with her research.

The resulting picture turned out to be far more than a tool for verification. It had a mood and visual content the artist was drawn to, and led to the creation of a series of beautiful, dream-like vignettes."