There was a Matisse exhibition at the Albertina while I was in Vienna. My two favourite paintings from the show were by artists other than Matisse. I also saw an interesting video installation called “Full Moon” from the adjacent exhibition on contemporary Russian art. The last photo in this series is from a bookstore near the Albertina. The selection of art reproduction postcards at this store puts any major museum gift shops to shame.
Art can save us time – and save our lives – through opportune and visceral reminders of balance and goodness that we should never presume we know enough about already
To understand the works of a photographer nothing can be more instructive then looking at their contact sheets. Published in 2012 the book is 304 pages long jam packed with black and white photos. It is evident from just glancing at the book that there is something very territorial and obsessive about Daido’s rhythmic modus operandi. These contact sheets are like universes unto themselves, each frame a little window looking out into bits of the world.
There’s a lot to explore in the book and room for many interpretations. The book is one big experiment in composition of repeating subject matters ranging from abstract to documentary. These experiments are so meticulous at times it is nearly impossible to tell the differences between one frame and the next. This is as close to a plastic medium as photography gets: the framing and subjects are constantly being rehashed and reshaped.
Subject matter is treated democratically with the same attention being paid to discarded rubber gloves as to mesmerising female forms. There are subtle shifts in style between the photos taken in Paris and Tokyo with the former being more formal and the later more dynamic. However, even though the cities maybe different the subject matter remains the same. Proving that you can never really escape yourself.
Check out this amazing article on painting realistic photos!
First off, many apologies for the long absence. Work and other interest have taken over my life of late. A good place to pick up where I left off with photobook reviews is this svelte black and white beauty. I picked up Ed Van Der Elsken’s “Een Liefdesgeschiedenis In Saint Germain des Pres” (henceforth SGP) at one of my paris haunts – the awesome photobook store – Comptoir de l’Image.
Walking into the store is bewildering because it is a veritable treasure trove. But luckily the proprietor Michel is quite a good judge of character and makes very good recommendations. Sensing my fondness for all things parisian he recommended SGP. Ed Van Der Elsken’s photographs really captures the Left Bank bohemian culture. The images are held together by Ann’s “Love Story on the Left Bank.” In the book we are immersed in her romantic world of artist and bar patrons. I love it for it’s gritty realism which you don’t see much of these days in the age of digital imagery. It is possible to fall in love with a woman made of silver halide.
Hope these iPhone images will motivate you to pick up the real book!