Photo Show: Christina Noble exhibits black and white photographs from her archive in recent show Kullu Perceived

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Photo © Christina Noble. Outside the Hadimba temple in the Dunghri forest above Manali. A sheep has been sacrificed to propitiate the Devi for the potential manifestation of her gaur oracle. The Brahmin cooks attend the fire while villagers come and go. 1976

“Kullu is a very special place. Once you arrive, you are captivated. It’s fascinating to see how three very different artists have responded to one region – be it the monumental oils of Catherine Goodman, the intricate pencil drawings of temples by John Nankivell or the clarity of the light captured by Christina Noble’s photographs”
Shehani Fernando, curator of the exhibition

The show Kullu Perceived: Images of a Himalayan Valley explored the region through the eyes of three artists who have kept returning there to make work. The exhibition at The Prince’s Drawing School space in east London brought together rarely seen images from over 40 years of her archive, a selection of which I have posted here for those who were unable to see the exhibition but who may still be interested in Christina’s work.

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Photo © Christina Noble. This photograph of temple and terraces was taken with a telephoto from the opposite side of the valley. It depicts exactly the same view featured in Lights and Shades of Indian Hill life 1895 by Frederick St. John Gore, which lead Christina Noble to Kullu in the first place. 1971

 

Christina Noble first went to Kullu in 1969 to trek from Shimla to Kashmir and ended up founding a Himalayan walking holiday business. Having lived in Kullu for the majority of the 70’s and 80’s and armed with her Nikon, her photographs reveal the relationship between the Pahari people and their dramatic surroundings.

Christina set up an artist residency programme and creative retreat, Prini Ropa in Kullu. Visiting artists, including painter Catherine Goodman, have been drawn to the Kullu Valley for over a century – attracted to the grandeur of the landscape and the culture of the Pahari people.

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Photo © Christina Noble. On a bank just below the Jalori Pass 10,000 ft (3,120 metres), the girls are resting while gathering fodder for cattle to be carried home in their large baskets. Resting and chatting, they are making shoes out of hemp (charas) straw, the leaves and seeds having been saved to smoke during the long boring winter. 1971

Photo Show – The Age of Anti-Ageing by Stewart Home and Chris Dorley-Brown at The Function Room London

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Becoming (M)other, Photo Chris Dorley-Brown

In a culture obsessed with the aesthetic rather than the fitness results of exercise, Anti-Ageing is more effectively achieved via digital manipulation than beauty products! From the press release

Stewart Home and Chris Dorley-Brown bring the past and the present together in The Age of Anti-Ageing which opens tonight and runs until 6 November in The Function Room. The Function Room hosts exhibitions and events in an upstairs room as the guests of the landlady of The Cock Tavern, and is run by Anthony Auerbach and Marlene Haring, with Dunya Kalantery. The latest exhibition comprises of two sets of digitally-manipulated composite family portraits merging mother and son, then and now, fiction and fact.

Becoming (M)other (set of 8 photographs, pigment giclée prints, each 584 × 690 mm)
“In 1966 Carla Hopkins took a series of fashion photographs of Julia Callan-Thompson, a club hostess who was hoping to become a model and movie actress. Julia landed a bit of film extra work and did press ads for products such as Max Factor lipstick but was soon devoting herself to a full time exploration of alternative realities in the company of such luminaries as Alex Trocchi, William Burroughs and Marianne Faithfull. In 2004, Julia’s son Stewart Home was photographed by Chris Dorley Brown imitating the poses from his mother’s 1966 modelling portfolio. A selection of the two sets of photographs were then morphed together to create a composite image of Julia at the age of twenty-two and her son Stewart aged 42.

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The Age of Anti-Ageing. Photo Chris Dorley-Brown

“The Age of Anti-Ageing, 2014 (set of 8 photographs, pigment giclée prints, each 584 × 690 mm)
In 2004 Stewart Home was photographed by Chris Dorley Brown imitating poses from photographs in his mother’s 1966 modelling portfolio. More recently, after noticing books with titles such as The Green Pharmacy: Anti-Ageing Prescriptions and The Anti-Ageing Beauty Bible lying around in the flats of friends, Stewart Home and Chris Dorley Brown decided to repose their 2004 restaged photographs a decade on. The photographs from 2004 and 2014 were then morphed together.

“Rationally the result should have been Stewart Home as he would have looked in 2005, but instead of this the morphs conjure up a timeless Stewart Home. Anti-Ageing books and products have become big business among the baby-boomer generation, but photographic manipulation makes them superfluous. In a culture obsessed with the aesthetic rather than the fitness results of exercise, Anti-Ageing is more effectively achieved via digital manipulation than beauty products!” From the press release

The show is curated by Clare Carolin

Upstairs at The Cock Tavern,
23 Phoenix Road,
London NW1 1HB
open: when the pub is open
admission: free

Photo Competition – Final call for aspiring music photographers in Hear To Be Heard 2014

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If you’re a music lover and a passionate photographer then you may be interested in Relentless Energy Drink’s ‘one shot’ photography competition with a deadline of this Sunday 12 October.

This year, as well as working together with DJ and presenter Zane Lowe to give a platform to the nation’s DJs and bands, the competition is also looking to springboard the career of aspiring gig photographers and music bloggers. The Relentless judges will be “looking for music enthusiasts that have the right drive and upmost passion to get their style known above the rest. They are looking for high energy, commitment and passion to Be Relentless”.

I gave a talk on photo competitions a couple of weeks ago at Photofusion in London and we discussed photo competitions and the Terms and Conditions including how important it is to read the small print. I have not seen the T&Cs so cannot comment on them for this competition.

Look out for a report (coming soon) from the evening talk by recent photo graduate Jess Morris who I asked to cover the evening event. If you have any comments, please do so below.

PHOTOGRAPHY PRIZE
The chosen photographer will win the chance to have their own photo gallery on nme.com and have their work showcased at Relentless @ No5 on Denmark Street London as well as earn commissions for Relentless throughout the year to shoot various events.

JUDGES
Include the well-known music photographer Dean Chalkley, who is responsible for some of the world’s most iconic album artwork and has been featured on this blog . See post, Music and portrait photographer Dean Chalkley debuts new short film.

The judges will select five finalists and then thee winner will be chosen from these five by public vote.

TO SUBMIT
Enter ‘one shot’ that you have taken that captures the passion, commitment and emotion of a gig. Attach as JPEG.

ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS
Why are you passionate about music photography?
Share an example where you have demonstrated getting your work noticed
Which photographer inspires you and why?

Follow the link HERE to read more and to submit online.

Other industry experts include:
Matt Wilkinson – NME’s new music section Editor for Radar
Jon Mclldowie – Head music booker for Reading and Leeds Festivals
Sam Grant – Head of Relentless Energy Brand Marketing
Zane Lowe – DJ and presenter.

https://twitter.com/relentlessdrink
https://www.facebook.com/RelentlessEnergy

Moroccan stylist and photographer Hassan Hajjaj goes pop in The Future of Fashion Show Holland

Khadija Lagnawia, 2013
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Metallic Lambda print on Dibond with wood and found objects, 52.5 x 37 in. Courtesy of the artist and GUSFORD | los angeles

Summer may be on the wane but these bold bright portraits should cheer you up. Thanks to record producer and DJ Mark Moore for pointing me to this recent article on The Huffington Post about 53-year-old multidisciplinary artist Hassan Hajjaj who was born in Morocco and “moved to London in his teens, at the height of the punk craze”.

“For the last 15 years, he’s joined the two cultures, splitting his time between Marrakech and London as he turns out densely textured portrait photography that plays well in the West but requires North African artistry to even exist at all… His subjects are his current friends, who pose and dress in ways that translate into arresting hybrid art.” The Huffington Post

His flamboyant Pop-Up Pop-Art portraits combine elements of the traditional studio portrait with African-inspired textiles and props made from domestic and recycled bottles, tins and packets of food. Hajjaj is a self-taught artist, influenced by hip-hop, reggae and the club scene.

V.B.F., 2013
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Metallic Lambda print on Dibond with wood and found objects, 35.5 x 25.5 in. Courtesy of the artist and GUSFORD | los angeles

His work can be seen in the upcoming The Future of Fashion is Now exhibition on show from 11 October 2014 to 18 January 2015 at Museum Boijman Van Beuningen, Rotterdam, the Netherlands. “The exhibition examines the critical stance that young fashion designers worldwide are adopting with regard to ‘the fashion system’ and the role of clothes in contemporary society. Designers with non-Western backgrounds and designers from countries bordering Europe, where until recently there was little or no tradition of fashion, are actively seeking to transform the fashion system.” From Taymour Grahne Gallery website

Mr J. James, 2013
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Metallic Lambda print on Dibond with wood and found objects, 36.5 x 25 in. Courtesy of the artist and GUSFORD | los angeles.

GALLERY OF THE EVERYDAY: Author Richard Makin responds to ‘the temps’ street interventions

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It’s been a while. But today’s post comes courtesy of Mary Cavendish in Hastings, who alerted me to these remarkable street art interventions happening in the streets around St Leonards on the South East coast of England. All the work is by the temps: an anonymous collective of artists, photographers, writers, film-makers and mental health professionals creating impermanent artworks around Hastings and St Leonards during Coastal Currents Arts Festival 2014.

Mary sent me a link to an online post in which author Richard Makin responds to the temps’ Writes of Passage guerilla exhibition in a polemic titled Situationism on Sea (Hastings Online Times). He writes:
“Someone once wrote: ‘You make interventions; I am the intervention.’ This declaration surely applies to the temps, whose unsponsored wheat-pasting and stencilled poetic fragments have already triggered reaction from Hastings Local Authority; this body promptly discharged a jobsworth to remove any artworks daring to raise a head along its vaunted seafront. Notwithstanding, the majority of the temps’ valuable contributions to the Coastal Currents Arts Festival have survived municipal vandalism.

“The brief is simple: the use of art as a transformative medium for psychical healing, a vital strategy in a context of medication randomly administered with the aim of a rapid return to the obedient norms of work, shopping and infantile leisure pursuits—this succinctly expressed by one contributor’s ‘Care Plan’, culled from actual medical reports: ‘Increase anti-psychotic medication, ensure dosage is high enough to decrease over-thinking and expressed emotion’ [. . .] It is poignant to reflect upon the years commonly spent on a waiting-list for effective psychoanalysis, set against the brief hours it took to remove some of this extraordinary artwork from our promenade (ironically, an environment in which a mediocre effort by colour-supplement street artist Banksy has been dutifully protected behind perspex by the Local Authority, who cannily recognize its value as a faux-anarchist tourist attraction).”

Read more at Hastings Online Times: Situationism On Sea

Mary sent some photos and a link to a blog from which the following quotes have been taken. Follow the link at the end of this post to the temporaries blog.

No.1
“The work that I have contributed was borne from an intuitive gut instinct, a driving force that I could not name, could not express, and barely understood at the time. The freedom to express emotions through making work can be cathartic but it can also allow for deep-seated feelings to emerge and resurface. It is a raw response, a physical manifestation of feelings that were, and still are, at times, too difficult to bear. Decades later it seems as relevant as when it was first created. For me, there is no need to justify my work or explain it, my piece is doing the talking, not me.
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“The streets are a public space, a place where people who may never enter a gallery space can come across works, often unexpectedly. The works are diverse – there are collaborative works using pen, paper and colours; there are chalk spray-painted adages and designs cascading down stairways; there are one-off pieces and multiple poster works, and a document that parodies mental health assessment. They are unapologetic, challenging and authentic. And all of them have been made with heart and soul. There are no titles or captions to explain any of the works, and no artist names to attach to them either. The fact that they are all anonymous only serves to foreground the work, rather than the creator of the work. In the canon of visual art, the preservation of anonymity can strip works of monetary value as attaching authorship to art is key to creating value. But what is it, or who is it, that bestows value on work? And why are some pieces sanctioned and others not?

“In St Leonards there is a double standard. The council seems to be saying:
Let Banksy be by the sea, but white wash the rest of them. However, if I am encased in Perspex along the seafront, will I remain intact and become a tourist attraction? Watch this space.”

No.2
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No.3
“I made a stencil of ‘this too shall pass’ which is a phrase from 12 step recovery which i thought was a good comment on the changing nature of mental states and the impermanence of the art we were doing (I used chalk spray paint). After 13 years of hearing this in meetings it felt great to put it to good use.”
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No.4
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“As someone with personal experience of mental health issues, involvement in this project has been hugely cathartic. I have been gradually exorcising my demons through art and writing since my breakdown last year and thanks to this and the incredible support of my counsellor and local mental health services, whose work I found to be incredibly attentive, in depth covering all aspects of one’s humanity, including relationships, personal history, work and spirituality, I feel I am now finally on the road to recovery. I found that the act of posting my work on the walls in our locality to be so powerful as it symbolises the bond between mother and child, specifically between myself and my five-year-old daughter. I collaborated with her to create the works, as a way of celebrating the positivity engendered when this relationship is a healthy one. As someone who experienced overt control and endless restrictions from her own mother, this has been incredibly cathartic for me. I intend to continue this work and would like to see the project grow and grow in order to raise awareness of mental wellness/illness and support those who are suffering from deep-seated mental health issues.”

No.5
“When I was posting my drawing and the accompanying song lyrics a gang of young men asked if they could look at what I was doing. I said ‘of course, that is the point’. I explained to them that putting the original drawing up was a way of honouring my Dad who is dying and reminding people to make the most of each other. They seemed genuinely moved and said they’d let their friends know about the piece. It’s good to be reaching audiences that wouldn’t frequent art galleries.”
SJL02Dad_thetemps

 

No.6
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No.7
SL01To find out more about the temps go to: thetemporaries at blogspot.com.