Dodo was born in Osaka in 1947.He graduated in fine arts from Kyushu Sangyo University in 1970, and started teaching at Tōkyō Shashin Senmon Gakkō (now Visual Arts College Tokyo). Two years later he started work as a teacher of photography at Ōsaka Shashin Senmon Gakkō; in 1998 he was made head of the school, by that time renamed Visual Arts College Osaka.
Dodo was present when the film director Naomi Kawase, who had first been a student of his and was later teaching at Visual Arts Senmon Gakkō, had her first baby on 24 April 2004, in Nara. This was filmed as Tarachime and Dodo photographed the event; the photographs were exhibited in Nara, Tokyo, and Locarno, and published as Haha
Dodo’s book of large-format black-and-white photographs A Radiant Land: Kii Peninsula won the PSJ’s Annual Award for 1995; his later collection of large-format colour photographs of the peninsula, A Radiant Land with Thousands of Years, was exhibited in Nara City Museum of Photography in 2000 The latter work also won him the Ina Nobuo Award in 1999.
Dodo has said that his major influences were Shōmei Tōmatsu, especially his Ryūkyū series “Pencil of the Sun”, and Yutaka Takanashi, for the way in which Takanashi’s concentration on Tokyo showed Dodo his own possibilities in Osaka. Among the photographers he admires are Robert Frank and William Klein.
Schilte & Portielje, who live and work in Rotterdam, are primarily known for their photography of series of unusual and very recognizable figurines. They display an intricate way of playing with and relating to each other: fantastic poetic, dreamlike figures who abduct the spectator into the artists world of wonders and miracles. The figures approach in the middle of a nondescript, plain, undefined room. They offer frontal and back views and grotesquely contorted bodies. They wear costumes adorned with veils and lace, corsages and garters, jewelry, neckties and collars, transparent fabrics and body hugging clothes. All these accessories create different characters in this theatric role play. The game lives of abstraction. How do huge feet go with a delicate body? Which intricacies are woven into the mesh of physical abnormalities? How do these bodies relate to the pieces of furniture that have been added to the decor for the characters to hold onto or lean against? It is the full intention of the artists not to give a satisfactory answer to these questions, they willingly create confusion and force the spectator to focus more intensely.
During recent years, the artists perfected their mise en scene. “Photoworks beyond reality” emphasizes surprising moments in surrealist, erotically charged moments. This creates a scrapbook full of subtle hints and uncertain role play. We can never see the full faces of Schilte & Portielje‘s figurines, mouth and nose are rarely recognizable, the entire head is mostly covered by eclectic hats, fabrics, hairdos or the entire face is headed another way.
Subtle eroticism, demanding poses or the quiet poetry of desire are the elements used in this dark world rich in contrast. Most of the time, female characters appear in his series. „Our work deals with the fundamental aspects of human existence, male or female alike. Sexual identity is not our subject, but ambiguity is important for us because it creates room for interpretation and identification,” say the artists.
Huub Schilte and Jacqueline Portielje collaborate since 1997 under the name Schilte & Portielje. „We prefer to work in absence of a preset theme or subject. We chose fragments of images from our own digital library, and then proceed independently to determine how the chosen fragment could fit into the concept of the new work. Frequently, we exchange the works so that one continues where the other stopped.”
Sometimes their work reminds the viewer of the sought-after Carte de Visite images, in fashion during the second half of the 19th century. However, the subjects of Schilte & Portielje are extremely timely. Their forms and design with historical patterns – like the consistent use of black-and-white photography reference analog role models. But the photographers use a well developed digital collage technique to achieve their trademark figurine, very much anchored in the present. „Most importantly, we look at our work settled somewhere between photography and painting. We love contrast between computer techniques and the slightly nostalgic charm of black-and white photography that enables us to increase the distance between art and reality.” The presentation of their work also resembles the classical medium of photography. By framing their work in historical fashion and protecting the surface with shellac they give their prints the aura of uniqueness, strongly resembling paintings.
Floria Gónzález was born in Monterrey on July 20, 1980n NL, moving to Acuña Coahuila in 1983, moved to Mexico City an age 16 where he lives and works. She studied photography and film in Mexico City and San Antonio, TX. In 2003 she starts working forming two ways; one inside photography and commercial video and the other in art.
These images attempt to express the restless feeling that the place I’m in isn’t where I should be and that the next location will be better. The geographical and temporal reference points in the photographs are blurred because the work isn’t about the location or time, but about a state-of-mind. The work comes from reality, but it’s a reality that’s distorted by subjectivity. It’s an expression of my state of mind during these restless off-moments.
Sylwia Makris is responsible for the photographic realization of the Old Masters project. The Polish photographer began her artistic career as a sculptor before starting to focus on photography in 2007. Through her intense artworks, which have been published in numerous art and fashion magazines, she soon made a name for herself. Her clients include actors and musicians, but also accomplished models, such as Shaun Ross and Melanie Gaydos. Sylwia’s works have an emotional depth which allows the viewer to experience the atmosphere during capture. “A face always tells more, than it knows,” Makris says. “ Photography is never just a capture of what is. It always communicates what has been, what could have been and also the suffering beneath the surface.”
The Old Masters project aims to utilize the capacity inherent in all of us to change and to reevaluate our point of view. We are therefore very pleased to present this ambitious project of Sylwia Makris.
We would also like to thank the Fashiondesigner Nina Athanasiou for creating and providing the costumes.
Old masters’ paintings that have been newly interpreted for this project continue to exert an influence on all of us. Is it possible to freely rediscover universal beauty – if it even exists? This is the question that marks the beginning and end of the Old Masters project. The works shown strive to tackle this question by emphasizing the need for a critical analysis of the often outlandish and exagerrated ideals of beauty of our present times and our society.
The famous painting “Gabrielle d’Estrées and One of Her Sisters,” for example, was recreated for the project with a breast cancer patient after a mastectomy. Models with Down syndrome impressively recreated other famous paintings used for the project. Other participators include the albino models Shaun Ross and Diandra Forrest, the transgender model Garrison Partusch, the completely tattooed Zombie Boy, Melanie Gaydos, who is suffering from a gene defect, collector of morbidities Ryan Matthews and his wife Regina, New York-based influencers like James Gallagher and Brett David, and the model Elliott Sailors, known for her experimentation with gender roles. Berlin and Munich will be represented by David Baum, chief editor of GQ, actress Nora Tschirner, electro visionary DJ Hell, nightlife veterans Frank Künster, Conny Opper and Liz Paige as well as the artist Vera Kochubey, Tanja Siren, Florentine Joop, Tristan Boettcher, author Hasan Cobanli and the siblings Lucas und Frederike von Cranach.
Over a period of one year the picture’s subjects were explored and chosen in close cooperation with the respecive models, in order for them and their personalities to be represented in the best possible way. It is thus no suprise that the selection ranges from Botticelli’s religious motives to Caravaggio, Lucas von Cranach, Gustav Klimt and Hans Baldung Grien.
Mindaugas Gabrenas (1977) is fine art Lithuanian photographer working worldwide.
His series Fantasma (2009) was the first integral photo project with intention to explore the long exposure landscape photography in personal melancholic and apocalyptic way.
In 2011 Gabrenas came back to black&white film photography and started his Dreamscapes series. Working in severe and abandoned locations with long time ago expired soviet Svema films and old light leaking cameras, Gabrenas reflected a black&white surreal dream projection in photography.
Back to the City is the third Gabrenas‘ project, created in US. Here author combines his passion for landscape and cityscape photography by mixing an American wild landscape with New York City cityscape. Presenting works in diptych Gabrenas is trying to reveal unexpected visual parallels between two antagonistic concepts: natura et urbi.
In his fourth and still ongoing project Somnia Gabrenas is back to the theme of dreams, capturing these visions using his handmade medium format film camera and colour films. mostly affected by mold from the dark bread.
Mindaugas Gabrenas is an author of a number of personal and group exhibitions worldwide, his works were published in various photo magazines, in 2014 his works were presented in International Festival of Photography PHotoEspaña (Madrid).
Author currently focuses on 6×6 film photography and works with medium format cameras varying from Hasselblad to plastic homemade. Landscapes, waterscapes, cityscapes and melancholic dreamscapes – are the main fields of his interest.
The name René Maltête is meaningless to most of us, since we don’t often look behind the camera, but he literally altered the way photography was handled, changing the game for good and all. He grew up in the 30’s and 40’s, when most pictures were taken of staid men in severe suits looking sorely unhappy as they stared into the lens of these photographic contraptions, trying not to blur the resultant images. Photos of the era were commonly staged, with little humanity. They were largely glamour shots or grim photos taken for utility. There wasn’t much personality to them, and they certainly weren’t funny. Then came the work of René.
As time progressed and more people could get access to cameras, the technology also became more mobile and less difficult to take out into the world, where life could be more aptly captured outside of staged shoots. Candid photography began to take off, and Maltête decided he wanted to show the hilarity of the human condition, so he made street photos that were odd, quirky, and often gut-busting. Meme-makers of today and those who devise “When You See It…” lists have nothing on the masterwork of this light-bending genius.
Roberto Kusterle was born in Gorizia in 1948, where he still lives and works.
He began with painting and installation in the 1970’s, before identifying photography as the ideal means for his artistic expression.
During the following years the principal themes of his poetics emerged: a continuity between the human, animal and vegetable world, the mediating role of the body, the negation of the gaze, the constant practice of irony, ambiguity and displacement to shape an idea and to make the viewer wonder.
Photography is used to maintain the tension between fiction and reality. Kusterle has a very personal approach to the camera: the actual taking of the picture is only the last step in a complex and articulated creative process.
From Indonesia, born in Jakarta with the nick name “Memi”. Know and love photography since high school, went to college majoring in Public Relations. Currently works as a freelance photographer, has attended several joint exhibitions in Indonesia and the Netherlands.
Luis Beltrán tells the stories of his daydreams through his latest body of digital print photographs. These quietly seductive works hold a deep and moving quality of innocent desire. Figures appear at the ends of alleys, above cityscapes, and up trees; they draw you towards them, making the eye chase its new companion. Beltrán’s photos produce a dreamlike sensation, the product of their deeply saturated, yet muted, coloration. While objects around the periphery of the central image maintain a luscious intensity with their dark shadows and full mid-tones, the focus shifts as the eyes finds a hazy subconscious perspective. The figures which are central to this misty state call feelingly to the viewer. Beltrán has created a world that captures a sense of the ‘other,’ and speaks to the mind’s natural curiosity. His photos call to a place within us all and echo the inner child’s adventurous and courageous nature.
Jone Reed‘s black and white photographs are as alluring as they are haunting. Whether it’s the blur of a body or the depth of shade and shadow, Reed has a natural ability to provoke emotion with her work. Describing photography as “the expression of artistic freedom,” her work transports the viewer to a place of atmospheric attraction
Sophie-Anne Herin begins her artistic career in Bologna, where she graduates at Dams.
She works as an actress in various theater companies, participating also in some theater productions with the Navile Theatre.
In 2006 she moves to France in Paris : here she continues her artistic training by studying Barbara Dauville’s Drama Therapy and she pursues her research on the body at Peter Goos Center of Dance.
In 2008, by meeting the artist Marino Catalano, she approaches photography: a study that she will deepen by attending the Master of Photography at Turin’s European Institute of Design, choosing in this way to side with the viewer, to stay with those out from the scene, those watching at, those waiting for what happens or “falls
Harold Eugene Edgerton, born in Fremont, Nebraska, on April 6, 1903, was the inventor of stroboscopic photography. Beginning in 1921, he studied electric engineering at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, later at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. There he worked as an assistant in 1927 and from 1928-68 as a professor. Edgerton’s uncle taught him the basics of photography when he was 15.
Many of my photographs are difficult to make. Some can even be dangerous. I do not want to have someone else coming in harm’s way taking the risks I need to take: to lean out off a cliff or stay underwater for the sake of my picture. We control how much pain we can tolerate; such information is unknowable by anyone else. Some of my pictures might look simple, but in reality they can test the limits of what a human body is capable of or willing to risk. Thus I title them self-portraits, so the viewer knows who is in the picture and who took it.