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Austrian photographer and diver Andreas Franke has created a hauntingly beautiful series of images called “The Sinking World” in which he layers studio photographs over underwater ship wrecks. In 2009, the USS Vandenberg was lowered into the ocean off the coast of Florida to serve as an artificial reef. When Franke encountered the ship while diving, he was inspired by the vessel’s haunting emptiness. For the Vandenberg project, Franke superimposes photographs of recognizable, everyday scenes; the studio figures appear ghostly, as if they are re-enacting scenes that previously took place in a lively atmosphere. The empty ship becomes a site that reveals snapshots of a lost, surreal world, discovering the humanity that lurks among the ships hallways, passages, and decks. Franke creates an unexpected dream world where a viewer is pulled into a strange, new, and fantastical place.
He’s known as the author behind the famed Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland by most, but the breadth of his disciplines goes far beyond literature. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, more commonly known by his pen name, Lewis Carroll, was also a logician, mathematician, an ordained minister and a photographer… yes, a photographer.
In his ongoing project City of Dreams, photographer Guy Martin has created a compellingly strange visual concoction. He’s sprinkled shots from last year’s Gezi Park protests between photos taken on sets of Turkish soap operas.
Seen together, the photos create a beautiful, inquisitive look at the current state of political and cultural affairs in Turkey and the surrounding region.
“When I first started combining the photos I thought I was losing my marbles or was going through some kind of creative existential crisis,” says Martin, who just won the CENTER Project Launch Grant for the work. “But eventually it started to come together.”
Martin first turned to soap operas because he needed to change things up. He was horribly wounded in the same attack that killed Tim Hetherington and Chris Hondros on the streets of Libya back in 2011, and vowed afterwards to stay away from war zones and conflict photography. Once he was well enough to start shooting again, however, he couldn’t shake his attraction to stories about power and struggle.
These beautiful photographs of the fishing practices of the Bajau Laut, who live in the Coral Triangle in Indonesia, belie a harsher reality. For over half a year in 2011, London-based photographer James Morgan photographed the Bajau Laut, a traditionally nomadic people who used to live almost their entire lives at sea. The Bajau fish for both income and food, with traditional practices involving the use of nets, lines, and handmade spear guns to catch fish. Unfortunately, the live fish trade, a global industry worth an estimated US $1 billion, has driven them to employ homemade fertilizer bombs and potassium cyanide to increase their catch.
Ukraine, February, 2014: In the days following the successful overthrow of a despised president, the revolutionaries continue to defend the barricades in central Kiev. It is here, on this square, that they had found strength, a glimmer of hope, a new-found spark of solidarity with each other. They refuse to let the square be taken away from them. They hold their breath. In this liminal space, after the fall of an old order and before the rise of a new one, anything is possible.
A Liminal Square is a series of portraits of people from all walks of life who participated in the recent revolution in Ukraine. The portraits explore the intersection of a major historical event and the personal histories of its participants. Made with a large-format camera, the images favor a measured, steady approach to the study of rapidly evolving political events.
Jean Luc Dushime is a photographer and multimedia producer born in Rwanda. Dushime grew up between the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Republic of Congo but now resides in the United States. The images included in this slide show are of his grandmother, a survivor of the Rwandan genocide that began 20 years ago this month. Dushime returned to Rwanda earlier this year to work on a larger project about his homeland.
“The last time I saw my grandmother, I was only a young boy. [Back then] I dreamt of playing basketball for the Chicago Bulls and I enjoyed dancing to MC Hammer. However, in 1994 my life changed. My family and I found ourselves fleeing from wars and mass killings. Since then we never stopped moving until my family settled in America in 2004. I never found the strength to return home, even though Rwanda never left my mind. I was trapped between my warm and happy memories of my early childhood growing up in Rwanda, and the horror I witnessed in my early teens in my homeland and in the DRC.”
Pucker up! Commercial photographer Chris Sembrot captures pet owners expressing their affection for their dogs in the form of a big, sloppy kiss. Inspired by his own unconditional love for his dog Sadie, Sembrot brought in various people and their furry companions to his studio, asking that they interact with their pet as they normally would. The result is a series of portraits that are unashamedly messy and full of warmth. Though some might find it disgusting, Sembrot sees something genuine.
“But what I see is the same crazy sweet love that happens when parents let their toddlers stick their hands in their mouths. It’s not sexy, it’s not inappropriate, it’s just love. And there’s nothing healthier than love.”
Long before the National Basketball Association became racially integrated in 1950, black players had been charting their own course in basketball. The New-York Historical Society’s exhibition “The Black Fives” tells that nearly 50-year history in photographs, objects, and other memorabilia. Taken together, it celebrates the pioneering teams (known as “fives” for their five starting players) and athletes who shaped the early days of the game and paved the way for progress in other areas of black life.
According to the Black Fives Foundation, a not-for-profit that collaborated on the exhibit and works to promote the history of this era of black basketball, blacks have been playing the game since high school teacher Edwin Bancroft Henderson introduced it to his students in 1904. In 1906, the Smart Set Athletic Club of Brooklyn, N.Y., became the first independent black basketball team in the country. Others followed, including the Alpha Physical Culture Club, the nation’s first all-black athletic club, and the New York Girls, the first all-black female team. Later, the New York Renaissance Big Five, also known as the “New York Rens,” became the first black-owned professional basketball team and went on to win the first World Championship of Professional Basketball in 1939.
When we think of places where drag and ballroom culture has thrived, cities like New York, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. spring to mind — but many don’t realize that there was a vibrant community in the Midwest during the ‘50s and ‘60s. In 2006, artist Robert Heishman uncovered a group of slides in a Kansas City salvage yard labeled, “Jack’s Slides: Chicago and Kansas City.” Heishman found a stash of images featuring beautiful drag queens, but the photographer remained a mystery.
The artist Hugh Turvey lives his life in x-ray vision; since her began creating his vivid, colored x-ray photographs, titled xograms, he views the world and its objects as something to be dissected, unveiled, and understood. Turvey’s strange x-rays are made thusly: he begins by positioning his subjects on light-sensitive paper, then overlays them with photographs and adds color so as to enhance depth.
X-ray technology, which we so often associated with sterile medicine, healthcare, and the danger of internal injury, finds an oddly tender home in Turvey’s work. Dense objects become visual synecdoches, stand-ins for living subjects; in one image, a coat becomes personified, its zippers, seams, and wrinkles suggesting human posture. Femme Fatale pictures the artist’s wife’s foot: contorted, stressed, delicate.
From 1995 to 1996 photographer Carrie Mae Weems created a groundbreaking body of work titled “From Here I Saw What Happened and I Cried”. The series is made up of 34 appropriated images from the 19th and 20th-centuries which she reprinted using a red filter and framed under glass that had been sandblasted with overlying text. The resulting combination displays a powerful comment on race relations for the past two centuries in America which Weems hopes “gives the subject another level of humanity and another level of dignity that was originally missing in the photograph.” A retrospective of Weems’s work is on display at the Guggenheim Museum in New York until May 14, titled “Carrie Mae Weems: Three Decades of Photography and Video”.
New York City, with it’s many bike lanes, paths and Citi Bike sharing, is a great place to cycle. Sam Polcer, freelance photographer (and communications manager for Bike New York), photographed cyclists in each of the city’s five boroughs, capturing the various styles of bicycles, riding and bike fashion. His new book, New York Bike Style (Prestel), includes photos “from Puerto Rican Schwinn aficionados with vintage bikes to fixedgear freaks; from BMX kids honing their bar-spins at skateparks to fashionistas floating down leaf-strewn streets in dresses,” the publisher said in a statement. “Each page is captioned with the subject’s name, what kind of bike they ride, where the photo was taken, and where they’re headed.”
It’s springtime in New York City (despite the brief snow storm last night) and that means it’s time to get your bike tuned up and ready to ride.
As Brazil prepares to host both the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Summer Olympic Games, many of the poor communities in Rio de Janeiro’s favelas are being forcibly evicted from their homes as construction in preparation for both events ramps up. The favelas, or slums, have been a part of Rio de Janeiro since the late 1800s and are home to roughly 1.4 million people. Many of the residents don’t understand the legal steps involved in an eviction and have been unable to challenge the government as it removes—and often destroys—their communities.
Photographer Marc Ohrem-Leclef traveled to Rio beginning in early 2012 with a medium-format film camera to document some of the residents of the favelasfor a book he titled Olympic Favela. He recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to help finance its publication by Damiani in conjunction with art-book distributor DAP Artbook.
Ohrem-Leclef said he decided to work on the project because he grew more politicized as he got older and he was familiar with Rio and felt a connection to the area. “I thought this idea was the worst thing in the world—people being displaced for an event that is meant to be universally celebrated,” Ohrem-Leclef said.