Ana Mendieta, Volcán, 1979; Six chromogenic color prints, each 13 1/4 x 20 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Promised Gift of Steven Scott, Baltimore, in memory of Hollis Sigler; © The Estate of Ana Mendieta Collection, LLC; Courtesy of Galerie Lelong, New York
Rania Matar, Yara, Cairo, Egypt, 2019; Archival pigment print, 44 x 37 in.; Courtesy of the artist and Robert Klein Gallery; © Rania Matar
Justine Kurland, Jungle Gym, 2001; Chromogenic color print, 30 x 40 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection; © Justine Kurland; Image courtesy of the artist and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York
Climate change is the manifestation of the destruction of the feminine by a masculine society that believes that humans have dominion over the earth — but as we are seeing it will be Mother Nature who has the last word. The destruction of the planet parallels the oppression and exploitation of women in many cultures around the globe — the erasure of the divine feminine has horrific effects, for the center will not hold.
We are moving well past the tipping point, though this will not be recognized until it is far too late to save the world as it is. Instead, we will enter into a new paradigm where illusions of the past shall be washed away when the glaciers return to claim the lands they inherited from us.
Mother Earth, like the sea, are historically considered feminine entities – a telling truth in a patriarchal world. What Western society has sought to exploit and oppress, perhaps William Congreve said it best in 1697: “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.” But why wait until it’s too late?
The new exhibition Live Dangerously, currently on view at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington D.C. through January 20, 2020, presents the work of 12 women photographers who create a new way of seeing and engaging with the natural world.
Featuring the work of Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Anna Gaskell, Dana Hoey, Mwangi Hutter, Graciela Iturbide, Kirsten Justesen, Justine Kurland, Rania Matar, Ana Mendieta, Laurie Simmons, Xaviera Simmons and Janaina Tschäpe. Live Dangerously abandons the conventions of Western art history where female figures in the landscape were presented as emblems of eroticism and fertility in favor of considering nature through the lens of the female gaze.
Among the most radical work is that of Cuban artist Ana Mendieta (1948–1985), whose work literally broke ground using smoke and flames. In her famed Silhuetas from the 1970s, Mendieta marked outlines of her body with gunpowder or sulfur, then ignited the silhouettes, leaving traces of her where her body once laid. It’s an eerie image evoking death scenes not unlike her own, men never punished for murder, the victim bearing the blame. Mendieta used photography and film to document these acts, knowing that the only way to preserve that which cannot be commodified is to record it.
Janaina Tschäpe and Justine Kuland also show images of women’s bodies scattered in the dirt and along the road. Presented in full for the first time, the Tschäpe’s immersive installation “100 Little Deaths” photograph series shows her lying face down in various sites as a means to contemplate her own passing, while simultaneously evoking the anonymous form of so many women killed before their time. It’s an apt metaphor for climate change, which often occurs as something that happens to other people — until it finally hits home.
In Graciela Iturbide’s Mujer Ángel, Desierto de Sonora (Angel Woman, Sonoran Desert), the resurrection comes — a sense offering a vision of something that exists beyond this realm, the possibility for salvation and redemption if we do right by the earth and the fruit it bears. Through this image, and those in the show, we may consider the significance of reclaiming sacred space of the divine feminine and protecting it from…ourselves.
Graciela Iturbide, Mujer Ángel, Desierto de Sonora (Angel Woman, Sonoran Desert), 1979 (printed 2014); Gelatin silver print, 16 x 20 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Cindy Jones; © Graciela Iturbide; Image courtesy of Throckmorton Fine Art, New York
Justine Kurland, Slumber Party, 2000; Chromogenic color print, 30 x 40 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection; © Justine Kurland; Image courtesy of the artist and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York
Janaina Tschäpe, Frick Park, from the series “100 Little Deaths,” 2000; Chromogenic color print, 31 x 47 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection; © Ja- naina Tschäpe; Image courtesy of Janaina Tschäpe studio
Janaina Tschäpe, Weimar, from the series “100 Little Deaths,” 1998; Chromogenic color print, 31 x 47 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection; © Janaina Tschäpe; Image courtesy of Janaina Tschäpe studio
Janaina Tschäpe, Moais, from the series “100 Little Deaths,” 2002; Chromogenic color print, 31 x 47 in.; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Gift of Heather and Tony Podesta Collection; © Janaina Tschäpe; Image courtesy of Janaina Tschäpe studio
The post Reclaiming the Sacred Space of the Divine Feminine in Nature appeared first on Feature Shoot.
This series focuses on those who take the making of pictures a step or two further, creating their own photographic tools.
Ethan Moses (Cameradactyl), Albuquerque, NM
Motivated by the Homemade Camera Podcast’s Self Developing Camera Challenge, Ethan Moses of Cameradactyl created an adorable cube pinhole camera that doubles as a developing tank.
The pinhole camera uses 2 ¼ inch square paper for paper negatives, or, as demonstrated in the video below, positive paper reversal. The 3D printed camera comes with a colored pinhole cap with precision drilled 0.2mm pinhole (f/250) for a focal length of 50mm. While most pinhole cameras have the shutter on the outside, this camera’s shutter is more like a dark slide. Once the paper has been exposed, the pinhole cap detaches from the body allowing it to be swapped for a developing tank light baffle so that the chemistry can be poured directly into the camera, developing the paper internally in daylight—no darkroom required.
The success of the project inspired Cameradactyl to make the camera available for sale so that others can develop pinhole photographs without a darkroom. Learn more in the demonstration video below.
Learn more about Cameradactyl’s work on their website.
Have you made or modified your own photographic equipment? Let us know at email@example.com
Jacobian Pigeon. All photographs © Tim Flach and shared with permission from the artist
London-based photographer Tim Flach travels the world capturing the nuanced expressions, unique patterning, and unusual profiles of animals large and small. Often focusing his lens on endangered and vulnerable species, Flach highlights the traits of animals that are at risk of disappearing due to habitat loss, climate change, and human activity. The photographer has worked with a huge range of wild, domestic, and captive animals, from Saiga and Beluga Sturgeons to Pied Tamarin and Pangolin.
Set on plain backdrops à la studio portraits, Flach’s bird photographs particularly stand out. His sharp, clear portraits show the colorful and wildly shaped feathers and beak of birds from the U.S. to the Himalayas. A stately Jacobian Pigeon, its two-toned ruff of feathers framing a white-crested face, seems to peer elegantly at the view, while an assertive cardinal stares pointedly, a white highlight glinting off the hook in the bird’s red beak. A statement on his website explains the relatable emotional quality of his work:
Tim Flach is an animal photographer with an interest in the way humans shape animals and shape their meaning while exploring the role of imagery in fostering an emotional connection. Bringing to life the complexity of the animal kingdom, his work ranges widely across species, united by a distinctive stylization reflecting an interest in how we better connect people to the natural world.
Flach has published several books of his photography: one is centered around endangered animals, while others are species-specific, celebrating horses or dogs. You can explore the artist’s catalog as well as several galleries of animal portraits on his website, and follow him on Instagram for first glimpses of new work.
Silver Laced Poland Chicken
Brucemas Day, Venice
Back in 1968, Magnum photographer Dennis Stock headed out to California for a five-week road trip up and down Pacific coast, documenting the hippie counterculture at its peak. Two years later, he compiled a selection of images for the book, California Trip, a paperback featuring black and white photographs that capture the complexities and contractions of living along the edge of the continental shelf.
“For many years California frightened me; the contrasting arenas of life shook me up,” Stock wrote in the book’s preface. “Even though I found the sun and fog, sand and Sierras, which conveyed a firm image of stark reality, the mother vision of life, the state seemed unreal. The people were constructing layers and dimensions of life that unsettled me. Surrealism was everywhere, the juxtapositions of relative levels of reality projected chaos.”
Born to a Swiss father and an English mother in New York City, Stock embraced the traditional order of things. He served in the U.S. Army following World War II before apprenticing for Gjon Mili in 1951, winning a LIFE magazine’s Young Photographers Contest, and becoming a member of Magnum photos.
In 1955, Stock met James Dean, just months before the actor’s untimely death, and made a series of photographs of the young rebel including a picture of Dean walking through Times Square on a rainy day that soon became one of the most reproduced photographs of the time. Stock even made it out to Hollywood to photograph Dean, overcoming his discomfort with the unreality of the Golden State.
Now, Dennis Stock: California Trip is back in print for the first time since 1970 in a facsimile edition from Anthology Edition — a perfect time capsule of a bygone era. Somewhere in the land of free love, a small monkey was strung up inside a metal contraption, his jaw clenched as he struggled to release the bar that held him tight at the neck — his face a mark of futile desperation yet refusing to give up.
It’s an apt descriptor for a casual cruelty that lurks in between scenes of hippie bliss, the clear warning that things are quite rightly amiss. Stock’s California takes a few pages from Hieronymus Bosch. There’’s a black humor that persists throughout the book, a space where things fall subtly on the spectrum from funny to frightful. Over time, it al seems to blend, like an LSD trip where nothing ever is quite as it seems.
“Technological and spiritual quests vibrate throughout the state, intermingling, often creating the ethereal,” Stock wrote. “It is from this freewheeling potpourri of search that the momentary ensembles in space spring, presenting to the photographer his surrealistic image. However, to the Californians it is all so ordinary, almost mundane. The sensibility of these conditioned victims is where it is all at, right, left, up and down.”
California Trip is, in some ways, like a litmus test, a measure of exquisite sensitivity that shifts and shifts and shifts, Like a kaleidoscope, the images seem to expand and contract, things are what you thought they were, then suddenly, they are not. Stock’s photographs do what the best photography can: they evoke a powerful sense of time and place so that the images become embedded in our collective memory.
Mars Station, Goldstone
Playa del Ray
All images: © Dennis Stock / Magnum Photos, from California Trip, reiussed by Anthology Editions.
The post Dennis Stock’s Mesmerizing Portrait of 1960s California appeared first on Feature Shoot.
Although metal is often seen as a cold and hard medium, one artist has found a way to breathe life into the material, allowing it to appear loose and free. In her Blown Away series, British artist Penny Hardy constructs life-size metal sculptures made from discarded machinery that’s based on the human body, each one exploring an emotion or experience. The Devon-based artist says, “By using discarded man-made metal items—which have been so skillfully made and used to create their own mechanical energy—I hope to extend their life in another form, re-use that energy for a different purpose, and exchange their function to create a new entity.”
Hardy originally trained as a scientific illustrator, which taught her to examine the intricacies of natural forms and observational draftsmanship. When an interest in three-dimensional forms was sparked, she transferred her strong connection to the natural and human landscape into sculpture. “The sense of movement and dynamics within sculpture provides it with its own life and vitality,” Hardy states. She chose to use metal machinery parts because they were made to be resilient and strong, yet thrown away at the slightest hint of failure. Hardy felt that these imperfect pieces should be recycled to show some of the effects machinery have had on our lives and the environment.
“While these pieces convey personal emotions relating to my own particular experiences,” Hardy says, “the sculptures are not exclusive and I hope many viewers will be able to relate to those feelings and effects and see how the piece can represent for them.”
Hardy creates privately commissioned work for clients across the globe. She has also exhibited throughout the UK. Most recently, she’s displayed her striking work at the Beaulieu Palace and Gardens earlier this year. Scroll down to see some of her remarkable creations.
British artist Penny Hardy uses discarded machinery parts to build life-size sculptures pulsating with energy.
By using the human body as a framework for the metal pieces, Hardy portrays fundamental emotions and personal experiences.
Hardy hopes to extend the life of imperfect man-made items by reusing them to create new entities.
My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Penny Hardy.
The post Life-Size Sculptures of Raw Human Emotions Made From Discarded Machine Parts appeared first on My Modern Met.
A Miniature Magazine Penned by Teenage Charlotte Brontë is (Finally) Acquired by the Famous Author’s Namesake Museum
It’s often said that even the most successful people start small. What they probably don’t mean, though, is that to become an author equal to the timeless stature of Charlotte Brontë, you should pen a miniature magazine first. Yet Brontë did just that: in 1830, at age fourteen, she hand-wrote six issues of a petite periodical, one of which recently came up at auction for $777,000. The Young Men’s Magazine was a matchbook-sized series including stories and even advertisements of Brontë’s devising.
The Brontë Society placed the winning bid to acquire Brontë’s magazine, wresting it back from the Museum of Letters and Manuscripts, a now-shuttered for-profit (and fraud-ridden) venture that nabbed it in 2011. Learn more about the history and significance of The Young Men’s Magazine in the video below, which features Ann Dinsdale, the curator of the Brontë Parsonage Museum in Haworth, England.