Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Next Wed: Aperture Panel on Abstract Photography at the Hammer

From the Hammer site:

From the beginning, abstraction has been intrinsic to photography, and its persistent popularity reveals much about the medium. Artists Susan Rankaitis and James Welling and UCLA Associate Professor of Art History George Baker debate a host of approaches to the abstract photographic experience in this panel discussion moderated by Lyle Rexer, the author of The Edge of Vision: The Rise of Abstraction in Photography.

Wednesday, July 8th 7pm


Tickets are required, and are available at the Billy Wilder Theater Box Office one hour prior to start time. Limit one ticket per person on a first come, first served basis. Hammer members receive priority seating, subject to availability. Reservations not accepted, RSVPs not required.Parking is available under the museum for $3 after 6:00p.m.

UPDATE: I'd originally posted this as happening on July 1st. It is actually the 8th. Sorry!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Ooh, ooh! Robert Frank at MOCA

Work, work, work - Frank took over 28,000 shots over two years of road trips only to select 83 for publication in The Americans. You thought this photography thing was easy?

The book was published 50 years ago and remains one of the greats in the medium's history. Photos from The Americans are now on view at MOCA downtown (good thing it's still around, right?)

No, wait! - not just photos but the only complete collection on the West coast selected by Frank for the book and in the order in which they appear (courtesy of the Parsons foundation, credit where credit is due)!

Holy Moly.

Ah, and remember, MOCA is free on Thursday evenings, thanks to Wells Fargo; bless `em for doing that in this day in age.

On view through Oct. 19

UPDATE: Since I don't by any means want to be so LA-centric, I should mention that the same photos in the same order are being shown at SFMOMA through August 23. SFMOMA's pretty amazing, by the way.

Crank out the Crap

I just read an artist statement that said the work "deals with the subversion and altering of identity through portraiture..."

Subversion? Really? You do realize this is art and not political science, right?

Anyway, I know this is probably old news to many, but if you haven't done it, go check out the Market-o-Matic artist statement generator!

The site states: Pimping yourself to the self-referential digital arts community has never been so easy!

Here's what it spat out for my selections when I hit the "crank out the crap" button.

Work of Post-Art in the Age of Symbiotic Reproduction

The flux creates, the body permeates. In the material reality, art objects are reproductions of the iterations of the flux -- a flux that uses the body as a machine to represent ideas, patterns, and emotions. With the evolution of the electronic environment, the flux is reaching a point where it will be free from the body to consume immersions into the contortions of the delphic reality. Work of Post-Art in the Age of Symbiotic Reproduction contains 10 minimal flash engines (also refered to as "memes") that enable the user to make haunting audio/visual compositions.

measuring chains, constructing realities putting into place forms a matrix of illusion and disillusion a strange attracting force so that a seduced reality will be able to spontaneously feed on it

Wesley Brown's work investigates the nuances of pixels through the use of slow motion and close-ups which emphasize the Symbiotic nature of digital media. Brown explores abstract and lonely scenery as motifs to describe the idea of imaginary reality. Using dark loops, non-linear narratives, and slow-motion images as patterns, Brown creates meditative environments which suggest the expansion of culture...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Philip Gefter discusses his new book at LACMA Monday

Monday night, Philip Gefter will discuss his new book, Photography After Frank at LACMA.
Philip Gefter Lecture and Book Signing

Monday, June 29 7:00 pm

Please join us for a talk by New York Times writer and former picture editor Philip Gefter, who will discuss his new book, Photography after Frank: Essays by Philip Gefter. The author presents the tale of contemporary photography, starting with a pivotal moment: Robert Frank's seminal work in the 1950s. Along the way, he connects the dots of photography's transformation into what it is today. Photography after Frank offers a page-turning yet journalistic approach bound to appeal to students and art world aficionados alike.

A book signing will immediately follow in the adjacent Director's Roundtable Garden.

Brown Auditorium
Free, tickets required
Tickets available at the box office one hour before program begins.

This program is organized by the Wallis Annenberg Photography Department and is supported in part by the Ralph M. Parsons Fund.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Blah blah blah

If I read another artist statement that talks about wanting to explore time or place or space, I am going to vomit.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Excessive Photojournalism Photoshopping?

Really NY Times? Check out the slideshow on this story for some Shadow/Highlight tool action gone beserk. Doesn't really seem appropriate for photojournalism but maybe that's changing?

Reminds me of the Klavs Bo Christensen scandal.
I agree with this post titled "Ten news photos that took retouching too far" that "ideally, retouching of a news photograph should be limited to basic exposure and color correction, cropping, resizing, or conversion to grayscale."

NOT the case here...

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

LISTEN - Roger Ballen talk at PhotoEspana

Copyright Roger Ballen

This will be the first of a group of posts related to my experience here at PhotoEspaña. The rest will follow starting next week when I return, but I wanted to get this out there.

After Andrew Hetherington's rousing endorsement of Roger Ballen's speech at last year's NY Photo Fest, I was excited to see Roger Ballen speak last night.

As someone who doesn't believe good visual work should require any explanation and who believes that any reaction the viewer has to visual work is valid, it was nice to see him up there rebelling and trying to mess with everyone's heads, seemingly believing the same himself. However, as an educated viewer and fan of his work, it was not all that fun to listen to him lie to the audience throughout the talk, so it was a bit of a mixed bag for me.

This was my first time recording audio so pardon the less than perfect quality. You'll probably hear a bit of the simultaneous translation blaring out of the headphones of people around me, but you can make out what he says just fine.


(Ah, I just noticed you'll have to click through to the actual post from your RSS reader to hear the video clip)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Hiroshi Sugimoto at LACMA

So I've been taking a break from blogging (and reading blogs) while in Madrid for PhotoEspana and will be taking it up again upon my return next week, but I wanted to make sure to post about a temporary show now open to the public at LACMA. I posted about them when they were only on view for staff and collectors committee members but now (I'm not sure for how long, so get on it right quick) Hiroshi Sugimoto's Henry VIII and His Six Wives “portraits”are on view for everyone to enjoy.

They're stunning and you owe it to yourself to see them, if only to observe the amazing presentation of them in the gallery. Charlotte Cotton recently posted about their installation over on LACMA's blog.