Blogging Is Overrated

Joel-Peter Witkin’s Grotesque Yet Beautiful Photographs Capture Private Erotic Longings

The legendary photographer Joel-Peter Witkin, previously featured here and now on view at LA’sJack Ruthberg Gallery, weaves strange erotic narratives through his staged images, some of which take weeks to complete. His body of work reads like a love poem to the grotesque, transforming what society deems taboo into miraculously beautiful scenes.

Witkin’s images avoid judging the body, opting instead to reveal mankind’s universal but most private erotic yearnings and fears. In his reinterpretation of Canova’s famously sensual yet demurely reclining Venus, for example, naked male genitalia slip from cover as if by accident, the organ poignantly vulnerable, delicate, and human, seemingly caught between erection and flaccidity.

(Continue Reading)

Tags #Joel-Peter Witkin    #Art    #Portrait    #Black and White    #NSFW    #Photography   

Vintage Photographs of Russian Prisoners Showcase Their Coded Tattoos

Tags #Vintage    #History    #Photography    #Portrait    #Tattoos   

The 2014 Boston Marathon: A Year of Healing

This is the second of two articles written by Mr. Hoenk about the Boston Marathon. The first was written a week after he photographed the 2013 Marathon; in it he details the difficulty he had dealing with the situation, and shares some photos from that day.

What a beautiful day for a marathon! The sun was shining, the birds were singing and there was an energy in the city of Boston that I just can’t describe. It’s been a long year of healing for myself and all affected by those fateful explosions near the finish line at the marathon last year, but our resilience proved that we can all definitely be called Boston Strong!

With the anniversary of the marathon bombings last week, my emotions started bubbling over again. I’ve pretty much kept to myself over the past year, dealing with the trauma I experienced when I photographed the immediate aftermath of the second explosion.  Looking back, and re-reading the blog post about my experiences during the week following the bombing, I realize how completely traumatized I was by the events that unfolded. It was life changing, and I learned a lot about myself, and my limits, professionally and emotionally.  I am not a professional photojournalist, and it has been very surreal seeing my photographs in Time Magazine, and in the Boston Globe, and on The View, and on World News Tonight, and on ESPN, but I took pride in knowing that my photos helped to illustrate the story of that day, and bring awareness to the truth of what happened.

…still a bit overwhelming though.

(Continue Reading)

Bob Colacello’s Photos of Andy Warhol Hanging Out With His Cool Friends

Breathless | Aleksi Poutanen

In the Beginning…

A single organism was all it took to destroy the Earth’s entire ecosystem. It was a long time ago, but were you to visit that planet, you wouldn’t recognize it as the one we live on.

Standing on dead, jagged rocks, you’d be greeted by nothing but a vast primordial ocean, raging under thick, noxious skies.

You wouldn’t be able to breathe. There was no oxygen in the suffocating atmosphere; only carbon dioxide, water vapors and methane with a hint of ammonia. Only faint traces of sunlight were able to pass through the thick clouds.

This was the Earth before we arrived.

Twice in the history of this planet, evolution produced an organism with the power to transform the entire climate.

The appearance of the first one, billions of years ago, caused a full-blown environmental catastrophe.

(Continue Reading)

A Jewish Photographer’s Portrait of Arab Israeli Teenagers

Turning 18 is the start of an important year for young Israelis. They typically finish high school, become legal adults, and get the right to vote. It’s also the year when the differences between two strata of Israeli society crystallize: While virtually all Jewish men and women join the military, most Arabs, who make up around 20 percent of the population of Israel, don’t.

In his series “Eighteen,” Jewish Israeli photographer Natan Dvir attempts to bridge that gap by taking portraits of Arab Israelis from a range of geographic, religious, and socio-economic backgrounds during that crucial year. His goal, he said, was to challenge “the widespread misconceptions and stereotypes of the people within my own country who I was brought up to consider more as foes rather than as allies.”

(Continue Reading)

Striking Photos of Early 20th-Century Baseball Players in Motion

William M. Vander Weyde, a photographer working in New York, made these images of baseball players mid-swing, -run, -hit, or -throw in 1904.

The George Eastman House, which holds many of Vander Weyde’s negatives, has posted a selection of his images on Flickr. “His photographs are strong and exciting and show a rejection of traditional ideas of composition, content, and style,” the curator writes.

(Continue Reading)

Tags #Portrait    #Sports    #History    #Black and White    #Baseball   

Photographs of the Provocative, Punk and Progressive

Sometimes referred to as the “King of Bad Taste” and the “Pope of Trash,” cult filmmaker and Baltimore native John Waters turns 68 today. His early films, like Pink Flamingos, Female Trouble and Desperate Living, included a cast of characters: Performance artist Divine (aka Harris Glenn Milstead, d. 1988), who usually played female roles; David Lochary; actress Mink Stole; and Susan Lowe, who played an asylum inmate in her first role in a Waters film. Later Waters cast Patty Hearst, kidnap victim and convicted bank robber, in a number of films, including Cry-Baby, Serial Mom, Pecker, Cecil B. Demented and A Dirty Shame. Arguably Waters’s most famous film is Hairspray (1988), which starred Divine and an unknown actress in her film debut, Ricki Lake. Hairspray was adapted into a Broadway musical of the same name in 2002 and ended up winning eight Tony Awards, including best musical. An adaptation of the Broadway musical was released as a film in 2007. It starred John Travolta and Zac Efron, but was a departure from the original Waters film production. 

(Continue Reading)

Tags #Music    #Portrait    #Photography    #Black and White    #Art   

The Shepherd’s Daughter | Clare Benson

My work is deeply rooted in my family history. After the death of my mother when I was twelve years old, I became increasingly curious about notions of family, memory, and mortality. 

I was raised by my father: an avid hunter, archery champion, and former hunting guide, whose collection of taxidermy trophies began to grow exponentially that same year that I turned twelve. 

Growing up amidst the hunting culture of northern Michigan, I learned to see the ritual of hunting as a way for humans to connect with and conquer untamed nature; it is a ritual that speaks to notions of mortality and the interconnectedness of life within a larger system.

(Continue Reading)

The Pose and the Prey | Antonio Pedrosa

Hunting in my imagination was always more like taxidermy — as if the prey was just a mere accessory of the hunter’s pose for his heroic photograph — the real trophy.

When I decided to document the daily lives of Portuguese hunters, I had in my memory the “cliché ” from the photographer José Augusto da Cunha Moraes, captured during a hippopotamus hunt in the River Zaire, Angola, and published in 1882 in the album Africa Occidental. The white hunter posed at the center of the photograph, with his rifle, surrounded by the local tribe.

(Continue Reading)

Tokyo Street Portraits | Tatsuo Suzuki

Tags #Black and White    #Portrait    #Photography    #Japan    #Tatsuo Suzuki    #Tokyo   

A Gorgeous Look at Car Culture in California

Photographer Ryan Schude’s series “Them and Theirs” is a vibrant, sometimes whimsical take on car culture mostly in and around Los Angeles. The project, which began in San Francisco in 2001 while Schude was studying at the San Francisco Art Institute, initially focused on people with vanity license plates. He put the project on hold and didn’t begin shooting it again regularly for nearly a decade.

Although many of the subjects are friends or friends of friends, Schude said he has also found people by “placing a postcard with an example of someone else’s car portrait under a stranger’s windshield wiper with a note explaining that I’d like for them to participate.” Before each session, Schude said he has a lengthy discussion with each portrait subject in order to determine the location and focus of the shoot. “The concepts spring up organically after we have decided on a location, while props and wardrobe lend a hand at shaping the end product,” he said.  

(Continue Reading)

Tags #Cars    #Portrait    #Photography    #Landscape    #Ryan Schude   

Extraordinary Conceptual Portraits by Christine Muraton

Tags #Art    #Photography    #Portrait    #Christine Muraton    #Landscape   

The most recent War in Afghanistan — with its associated NATO coalition military operations, terrorist attacks and the return of the Taliban — has dominated the Afghan news headlines for the past ten years. But what stands out most from repeated visits to Kabul during the past decade is the emergence of a new westernized urban class. This class emerged thanks largely to the influx of money that came with the coalition’s arrival in 2001. Far from the clichés of a turbaned Afghanistan, these new urban residents mingle in supermarkets in Kabul with their mobiles stuck to their ears.

Clothes, particularly men’s, are tighter, showing off hours at the gym and transforming bodily functions (how do you pee squatting in tight jeans?). In the private sphere, smaller housing reduces family units which in turn allows children to have their own room. The attendant changes in family hierarchy come at the detriment of the older generations whose authority is undermined by social and technological changes.

(Continue Reading)

Women From Iconic Paintings Replaced With Webcam Girls

Camgirlsproject was created by former fashion student Vanessa Omoregie who began the ongoing series about a year ago. The project seeks to investigate the female image within the context of the internet by presenting images of classic paintings that feature webcam selfies in the place of the painted nude female form. All images are user-submitted and present the viewer with a reappropriation or reclamation of female nudity as something to be celebrated and not shamed for.

The term – camgirl – originally applied to anyone who recorded themselves via webcam doing anything, not just sexual acts, but has been more currently associated most strongly with sexual behavior. Omoregie says, ”The name has connotations of its own.The project hopefully makes people rethink what they know about the term and how they view girls who choose to be in front of a camera -sexual or not.”

(Continue Reading)

Tags #Portrait    #Art    #NSFW    #Collage    #Camgirlsproject    #artists on tumblr