Archive for the ‘Galleries’ Category

Diemar/Noble: Some Photographs Taken in France

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

The current show at Diemar/Noble in Wells Street W1 is, to say the least, eclectic. Extending from the late 19th century to the inter-war years, there is some extraordinary work here.

Raoul Ubac: Le Combat des Penthesilees

Raoul Ubac: Le Combat des Penthesilees (The Battle of the Amazons)

The Ubac above was the highlight for me. I’d never heard of the artist before but this is a picture I could look at for days at a time. Like many of the most interesting photographs of that period, I’ve got no real idea how it was made – and of course it doesn’t matter. It’s simply a beautiful piece. Of course the image above (which is not of the actual print in the show – that’s a much better print) gives you only a vague idea of what the real thing looks like. I urge you to go and see it in the flesh.

I don’t have time now to describe all the pictures I liked, but there are many. Get yourself down to Wells Street.

Bruce Davidson

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

Visited the opening of the wonderful Bruce Davidson show at Chris Beetles Gallery last night.

Bruce Davidson: CATHY FIXING HER HAIR IN CIGARETTE MACHINE MIRROR WITH ARTY AT THE OCEAN TIDE BATHS AND BAR, CONEY ISLAND, 1959

Bruce Davidson: CATHY FIXING HER HAIR IN CIGARETTE MACHINE MIRROR WITH ARTY AT THE OCEAN TIDE BATHS AND BAR, CONEY ISLAND, 1959 (©Bruce Davidson/Magnum)

There’s not much to say about Bruce’s work that hasn’t already been said, but as ever it is a great pleasure to see real prints of such great work, and respect is due to Giles for putting on a fine show.

Davidson’s mixture of humility and perseverance, and his genuine affection for people, glow out of every picture here. No exhibition can ever encompass in full the long term projects Bruce engaged in – the two years of East 100th Street for instance – but selection is always the curators greatest skill, and the essence of his work is captured well here.

Bruce Davidson: MAN AND WOMAN REFLECTED IN CAR WINDOW, LONDON, 1960

Bruce Davidson: MAN AND WOMAN REFLECTED IN CAR WINDOW, LONDON, 1960 (©Bruce Davidson/Magnum)

It was another of those times when I wished my bank balance could absorb the price of a print. I reckon, for what it’s worth, that these prints are great value for money. I can’t see Bruce’s work doing anything but increase in value as the years pass.

Emily Allchurch and Laura Noble

Thursday, April 14th, 2011

Visited the Diemar / Noble Gallery last night to see Emily Allchurch talking about her work Tokyo Story with Laura Noble. Emily has recreated a series of prints made by the 19th century Japanese artist Hiroshige for the collection One Hundred Famous Views of Edo.

Tokyo Story 3: Night Harbour (after Hiroshige)

Emmily Allchurch, Tokyo Story 3: Night Harbour (after Hiroshige)

As usual, you can find out everything you need to know about the project by the application of a little Google so I won’t go into it here.

Hiroshige 'Tsukudajima from Eitai Bridge'

Hrioshige, Tsukudajima from Eitai Bridge (2nd Month, 1857), from the Brooklyn Museum - click on the picture to visit the museum website

I recommend a visit to the gallery before 7th May to have a look at the pictures for yourself. They’re worth it. I enjoyed the thoughtful, playful nature of the work and hearing Emily talk eloquently about the project was a rare bonus.

Charity Auction for the Photographers’ Gallery

Friday, February 18th, 2011

I wandered down to Christie’s in Kensington last night for a one-off charity event in aid of The Photographers’ Gallery, or more specifically in aid of it’s new building. Apparently they need to spend £8.7m on it and, incredibly, they’ve already raised £8m, so this is just the last little bit.

Leaving aside what you, or I, might think of the place and it’s curatorial policy, I think it’s encouraging that Christie’s was so packed last night and that good prices were being achieved. I’m constantly surprised by how much some pictures go for – but then, as someone pointed out to me last night, I’m a photographer and therefore the last person to know about the value of photographs!

In some conversations about money and prices I felt something of an imbecile, being able to say little more than whether I like a picture not. “But it’s an edition of only 7!” The consensus was that I should stick to taking pictures and leave the money-talk to the grown-ups. Fine by me so long as I end up getting some.

Anyway, an interesting night. And thanks, Christie’s, for all the champagne.

Romantic Photographers

Sunday, October 31st, 2010

Just back from a lovely Sunday afternoon wander around the Tate, or Tate Britain as I suppose I should call it. (I know… I’m an old curmudgeon…)

Enjoyed Fiona Banner’s aeroplanes – as one who has long appreciated the astounding beauty of such functional items as war-planes I’m very happy to see these shapes being brought to the attention of the art appreciating public. Though I did get told off by a vigilant warder for opening a hatch on the side of the Jaguar. I just wanted to see if it still worked.

Anyway, we had a look at the Romantics exhibition in the Turner gallery on the grounds that I love Blake and Eva wanted to do a little Sturm und Drang research. To my surprise we found, at the end of the exhibition, some photography.

moore

Raymond Moore. “Galoway. 1980"

And so I was introduced to two British photographers I’d been hitherto unaware of: Raymond Moore and Keith Arnatt. It proved to be a highly inspiring few minutes spent in the company of their work, and whetted my appetite for seeing a lot more of it.

Keith Arnatt

Keith Arnatt “Untitled, A.O.N.B (Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty)” 1982-4

So if you find yourself in the Tate make sure you go to the far end of the Romantics show and have a look.

Exalted Company

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009
Robin Bell's Silver Footprint

Robin's book

When I picked up Robin’s book at the London opening of his show last week I was chuffed to see he’d elected to put my picture on a spread opposite a Bill Brandt. What a complement!

Robin Bell's Silver Footprint

Bill and me

I don’t know if it’s fate taunting me after I mentioned Brandt in this blog last month, but now I come to think about it, it’s a little intimidating. Quite a lot to measure up to! Still, all in all I’m thrilled.

For anyone who hasn’t been following the story: Robin is the man I have been using for my printing recently. He’s probably the most respected printer in London and, to mark his 35 years in the darkroom, he selected some favorite pictures to go in an exhibition. I was very flattered to be asked to contribute, especially considering the exalted company I would be amongst. The book is effectively the catalogue of that show.

The book is available from the gallery.

Robin’s ‘Silver Footprint’ show moves to London

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

Robin Bell’s Silver Footprint show is moving to the Richard Young Gallery in Kensington, London – and it includes the picture of mine that Robin chose:

Kapitulska, Bratislava. November 2003.

Kapitulska, Bratislava. November 2003.

I’m looking forward to the opening, and seeing the book which the exhibition has spawned. Drop by if you’re in London, the show is on from 5th to 28th November at the Richard Young Gallery.

Galeria Paz y Comedias

Tuesday, June 16th, 2009

Had a good meeting with Teresa and Laureano at Galeria Paz y Comedias in Valencia on Thursday.

First of all, this is a beautiful gallery. In these days, when galleries try to make themselves resemble a white cube as much as possible, it’s refreshing to find a gallery that allows the beauty of the building to come through. It’s located on the second floor of a stunning Valencian art nouveau apartment building which has the trademark mosaic tile floors intact.

Galeria Paz y Comedias is a unique space

This must be troublesome on occasion when it comes to selecting work that won’t fight with the decor, but works brilliantly for most shows.

Teresa Legarre, gallery owner and curator, was also a breath of fresh air. She was appalled by my Spanish, of course, but very helpful, knowledgeable, and frank. I can only sympathise with her when it comes to navigating her way around modern photography, with it’s huge digital prints using size and colour to overcome deficiencies in structure and composition.

We left with a good feeling that the gallery understood what I was doing, which is rare enough, and that we should be able to work together at some point in the future.

Another day, another gallery opening

Thursday, March 12th, 2009

The gallery in question this evening was Galeria Kessler-Battaglia in Valencia, and a great evening it was. The exhibition was Sergi Cambrils “Historias Cocinadas”, a collection of delicately executed drawings/collages/paintings, full of wit and beauty.

The best thing, though, was the friendliness of the gallery hosts who, in stark contrast to the last gallery, offered us wine and chatted with us in a mixture of three languages, telling us about the work and the gallery itself. Truly refreshing and well worth the time it took for us to visit the place.

It’s quite amazing the difference a bit of hospitality makes to ones appreciation of an exhibition. Actually, it’s not that amazing. It’s common sense. What’s amazing is that so many gallerists fail to appreciate this basic fact.

Needless to say, when it comes to my next exhibition, I’ve no doubt which approach I’ll prefer.