Regular readers will know I’m a fan of Harvey Benge. He is doing a workshop details below…
Killing Time in Paradise
Workshop with Harvey Benge at Lichtblick School
October 29th and 30th, 2011
In the workshop with Harvey Benge you will learn a lot about creating your own visual language. You start with generating visual ideas, followed by the editing and sequencing of the photographs found in urban life and finally the presentation of the series in exhibitions or in publications. Harvey Benge has a lot of experience in creating and publishing photo books and has exhibited his work all over the world in galleries and museums. With pleasure he will be giving workshop participants inspirational and practical advice for the progress of their photographic practise.
More information and application form:
Get the last free places!
Best wishes from Cologne
Tina Schelhorn and Wolfgang Zurborn
Just a heads up, Adrian Tyler has a new book out – Form and Fiction
I’ve not got my copy yet, so no comments until I get the thing in my hand, but having seen a number of books and prints of his, I’m sure the technical quality will be high.
Just ordered Harvey Benge’s latest book, Still Looking For It.
I really need to find out how he makes these as he is selling them for a lot less than I could even make a 40 page book with decent paper on Blurb, let alone include postage and a little bit for the photo fund!
The other two artist books (as opposed to published books) I’ve got from Harvey have been double sided photo paper then just stapled without a board cover. Looking forward to seeing how this one is constructed.
Looking at the new paper options on Blurb, photo paper would bang my book up to over 50euros cost ex-shipping.
More when I get the book…
Whilst I was writing this post, Harvey published details of his new book on his blog, Some of John’s Friend’s .
Love the layouts – totally different from anything else he’s done I think (normal caveat regarding I may have missed a book or two!)
Been feeling a bit jaded recently, nothing much I see gives me that little shiver.
Just come across Ana Himes, which seems to have got me buzzing again. Nice mix of photography
The photography often has that sense of isolating detail, whilst the collage seems to concentrate on the relationship of the components
I’ve been a long time admirer of Harvey Benge. Before Blurb and the like existed, he was self-publishing books and working with the way images work together, usually as pairs, sometimes in small groups, or as in his books, larger structures.
I’ve recently acquired his two Paris diaries. These are – I guess – inkjet prints, folded and stapled together. Very nice to hold and to see something intimately put together.
The pairings are always interesting, similarities of tone, contrasts between perspective or macro details versus broad vistas. There is always a danger with this, one I know to my cost, that viewers look for the ‘answer’, falling neatly into the trap that the engagement with the image is merely cracking the code. Either that, or you always feel that the pairs are each propping eaching other up, the suspicion that neither image is strong enough on its own.
I don’t get this feeling with Harvey’s work. The single images seem to serve a purpose in the flow of the whole, and the pairings pull you in and allow you to play with meanings. All good stuff.
I really like the surreal way the planes in these images work. These are done in such a way you are constantly doubting what is real and what isn’t.
Interesting use of pastel colours too.
From the artists statement:
“Drift” is representing a way of seeing the fractured modern world in its overlapping images and contexts. I am interested in finding the sublime in the ridiculous condition of modern life with a Dadaist awareness of the found object. With a surrealist sense of humour I am creating a collision montage of juxtaposed, multi-layered images combined on a single picture plane. Disconnected from the purely functional sense our every-day surrounding appears in a much more sensual way.
Reading that, seems to fit pretty well with what I’m trying to do! Which is maybe why I feel so drawn to these. I must admit to being almost overawed by the apparent effortless ease.
Also interesting how the colour palette has changed from a previous series..
It is also well worth downloading some of the texts available on the website of discussions of his work…
he has posed a philosophical question by
means of photography: How far is it possible for a subject in the digital age to attain individual
cognition and performance in an everyday public context?
Everyday worlds and the worlds of images dialectically merge in the subject’s mind: views of
the perpetually changing Lebenswelt are unrecognizably bound to the omnipresent pictures
from the mass media.
To Zurborn, traffic terminals, concert fields, stadiums, shopping malls, business and
entertainment parks are the zones the media invade, where the relation-ship between man and
public space take on new aggregate states of individual cognition and action.
These are things that concern a lot of us, but his implementation of these concerns is unique IMO.
An earlier project from 1996, used a technique I tried a while back…
But he managed to fragment the world in ways I wasn’t doing. The vertical rather than horizontal arrangements don’t allow for the graphic complexity I was trying for, but the resultant fragmentation serves just as well. Very nice. Certainly stuff I’d buy if I was buying art instead of selling it!
His landscape format photographs show an ‘inhabited emptiness’ if that makes sense. Lots of space counterbalanced by evidence of human development. A common colour theme emphasises a sense of unreality.
The framing and composition suggests alien intrusions that seem to be transforming rural China at an ever-increasing speed.
Woods Lot’s recent post concerning Heideggers view on the tool,
The peculiarity of what is proximally ready-to-hand is that, in its readiness-to-hand, it must, as it were, withdraw in order to be ready-to-hand quite authentically. That with which our everyday dealings proximally dwell is not the tools themselves. On the contrary, that with which we concern ourselves primarily is the work — that which is to be produced at the time; and this is accordingly ready-to-hand too. The work bears with it that referential totality within which the equipment is encountered.
reminded me of Adorno’s statement that for art to be ‘modern’ and relevant, the tool had also to be a part of the modern world. The exagerated digital quality of Li Lin’s colours seem to emphasise the gap between the modern and the rural , the almost cognitive dissonance, that the people who populate Li Lin’s landscapes must feel.
This theme of ‘stranger in a strange land’ when the stranger is the original resident of the landscape is an old one, but the speed of change in China, and China’s relationship to the more developed world is one that is a fertile ground for Chinese artists.
I have a lot of time for this project. The almost ironic surreal-ness of how we construct our piece of cultivated and ordered nature speaks volumes of our need for something ‘other’ that we seem to loose in the same act as trying to create it.
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