Jon Tonks @ Impressions Gallery

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Jon Tonks: Empire
11 September to 12 December 2015

Perhaps better known as places of conflict, exile and Darwinian experimentation, award winning photographer Jon Tonks photographs the people and landscapes of each territory, capturing traces of the past and offering a window into the communities and their lifestyles that, despite the distance, remain very firmly British.

Impressions Gallery, Centenary Square, Bradford, BD1 1SD
01274 737843

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Rubi Lebovitch @ The Center for Fine Art Photography

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Rubi Lebovitch: Home Sweet Home
July 3- August 22, 2015

Reception: August 7, 2015 from 6-9 pm

Stepping into the Home Sweet Home exhibition is like stepping through a funhouse mirror. Using straightforward images of domestic scenes, Rubi Lebovitch creates new context and meaning; often transforming these comfortable and familiar scenes into something strange and surprising. Lebovitch seeks to highlight the things at home normally hidden. The scenes he creates can be divided in to two main categories: inanimate objects and human scenarios. Both categories are characterized by mystery, vagueness and absurdity. A mixture of anxiety and humor is experienced when viewing these works, which bel​ie​ the peacefulness and security usually associated with home.

The Center for Fine Art Photography
400 N. College Ave.
Fort Collins, CO 80524

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Joseph D.R. OLeary @ The Center for Fine Art Photography

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Joseph D.R. OLeary: Of Beards and Men
July 3- August 22, 2015

Reception: August 7, 2015 from 6-9 pm

Of Beards and Men is a remarkable, whimsical, and insightful collection of portraits that serve to capture many facets of masculinity. Using bold full-bodied portraits of men with varying degrees of facial hair, Joseph D.R. OLeary explores the current cultural fascination with defining masculinity and the struggles men face to create their own persona’s and identities. OLeary’s portraits are both inspired and defined by each man’s personality, giving them an innate sense of uniqueness and individuality within each image. Stepping into this gallery surrounds the viewer with beautiful portraits and food for thought as a partial visual record of masculinity in contemporary society.

The Center for Fine Art Photography
400 North College Avenue
Fort Collins, CO 80524

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Book Review: Primordial Landscapes by Feodor Pitcairn

PLATE 6Landscape photography is such an amazing photographic art form. We only have one planet and the fact that there are so many treasures to behold with our eyes is a mind-bending thought. We never really give much regard to what visuals are out there. We’re so busy with our day to day lives that maybe we don’t get to travel as much as we like and that’s one reason why landscape photo books are so great.

PLATE 9Primordial Landscapes (Iceland Revealed) is a great photography book. It’s so multi layered combining the stunning work of Feodor Pitcairn along with the beautiful poetry of Ari Trausti Gudmundsson. The book it self is a great coffee table book that would certainly get your guests talking. The striking cover definitely makes a nice conversation piece and as you open the book to flip through the well printed pages you will see an amazing combination of landscape photography and a poem on the opposite page.

PLATE 24I like the aspect of poetry accompaniment. We can interpret art any way we see fit. I have often put on a slideshow of Ansel Adams landscapes while blasting Pallbearer and having a bourbon. That may not be everyone’s cup of tea but I like it. Anyone who picks up this book can enjoy it on many levels. There’s the geographic aspect of the photos. Iceland is beautiful and to put it in easier terms every photo in this book looks so lush and vibrant that any image could be out of a Hollywood blockbuster high fantasy film. They look so unreal. Just looking at what Mother Nature has placed in front of us through the eye of a master photographer can open your mind and clear your head immediately. You will get lost in these images.

PLATE 37The poems are a nice touch and they do not take away from the presentation of the photos. They offer a different perspective on the images you see on their opposite page. The poems seem more stream of consciousness and that sort of thing is perfect for looking at landscape photography. You get to come up with your own stories for the images. One thing I really love is that there is an index in the back for each location along with a map of Iceland to see where each image was snapped. Instead of putting the info on the photo page or the opposite page the handy guide in the back just adds another level of excellence to this book. Iceland is a fascinating place and its vistas need to be seen to be believed. Do yourself a favor and pick this book up and take an adventure through Iceland’s glorious terrain.

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Primordial Landscapes (Iceland Revealed)
by Feodor Pitcairn
Text by Ari Trausti Gundmundsson
powerHouse Books

For more information and to purchase the book: www.powerhousebooks.com/books/primordial-landscapes

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Book Review: Last Best Hiding Place by Tim Richmond

Judith Gap, Montana

Judith Gap, Montana

“Places, like people, can seem alone, filled with melancholy,” Tim Richmond introduces his photographs of the American West.

What we get to see in this tome is, well, deserted streets, a train on its way into a vast emptiness, some dilapidated houses, gas stations, bars, a billboard in the middle of nowhere that shows the face of a healthy young boy and next to it these words: “The POINT is: Life begins at conception!,” a church way out there in the prairie (Oglala Sioux Reservation, South Dakota, the caption reads) … it all looks strangely unreal, and somewhat absurd, although I know it to be real for I have seen such places and scenes when travelling through the US.

Bar, Deadwood, South Dakota

Bar, Deadwood, South Dakota

“Richmond’s American West is a desolate place filled with cowboys (or men who look like cowboys), and the few women are also at least a little rough around the edges,” Jörg Colberg aptly describes the characters shown – who, to me, all seem sad and lost.

I feel profoundly touched by these pics that radiate a certain futility and hopelessness that I sometimes feel liberating. A quote from Robert M. Pirsig’s Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance comes to mind (I quote from memory): The Dakotas do not promise anything and that is why they do not have to live up to anything special.

There’s nothing pretentious, no showing off – the people portrayed do not pose for the photographer. And the few who do, like the woman in a bar in Deadwood, South Dakota, do not make an effort in order to make a favourable impression. That’s the way I am, the woman seems to say.

It’s this unpretentiousness that attracts me, and that I warm to.

Oglala Sioux Reservation, South Dakota

Oglala Sioux Reservation, South Dakota

“Photographs are associative images – they are Rorschachs,” as my friend, San Francisco-based photographer Emelle Sonh, says.

To me, Tim Richmond’s photographs show neither the American dream nor its opposite. What they show is a very human reality stripped of illusions. The bars, beer cans, and cigarettes illustrate that such a reality is sometimes difficult to bear.

 

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Last Best Hiding Place
by Tim Richmond
Essay by Jörg Colberg
Kehrer, Heidelberg Berlin 2015

For more information and to purchase the book: www.timrichmond.co.uk/por/book-shop/

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Jeffrey Milstein @ Kopeikin Gallery

unnamedJeffrey Milstein: LA NY
July 18th – August 29th

Reception with the artist Sat. July 18th 6:00-8:00 PM

Kopeikin Gallery
2766 South La Cienega Blvd
Los Angeles, CA, 90034

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Ben Altman @ Kopeikin Gallery

unnamedBen Altman: Site/Sight
July 18th through August 29th

Opening reception: Sat. July 18th 6:00 – 8:00 PM

Kopeikin Gallery
2766 South La Cienega Blvd
Los Angeles, Ca, 90034

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ANSEL ADAMS @ QUINTENZ GALLERY

The Golden Gate before the Bridge, 1932 Vintage gelatin silver print, 6-5/8 x 9-1/16 inches Photograph by Ansel Adams © 2015 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust

The Golden Gate before the Bridge, 1932
Vintage gelatin silver print, 6-5/8 x 9-1/16 inches
Photograph by Ansel Adams
© 2015 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust

ANSEL ADAMS: MASTERWORKS FROM SEVEN DECADES 1928–1982
JULY 10–SEPTEMBER 8, 2015

Quintenz Gallery
613 Cooper Ave., Aspen, CO 81611

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Interview with photographer Terry Ratzlaff

The Tide Goes North 1

The Tide Goes North 1

F-Stop Magazine: How did you first become involved in photography and what led to you working in this medium as an artist?

Terry Ratzlaff: I became interested in photography during my senior year of high school when my brother gave me a book of the work of Andre Kertesz. I had never seen images like that before and it inspired me to the point where I began making photos in my spare time. 6 months later I decided to go to school and study photography. My first semester of school was terrible, I struggled in most classes and nothing made sense. During my second semester, things started coming together and I found that I really enjoyed photographing. 12 years later I don’t know what I would be doing without photography and story telling.

F-Stop: The current issue of F-Stop Magazine includes images from your project “The Tide Goes North,”  can you tell us about this project? How did this project come about?

TR: A culture has thrived for thousands of years, but now, the proposal of North America’s largest open pit mine, Pebble, is threatening its existence.  Drawing inspiration from writer and anthropologist, James W. VanStone, who spent time on Nushagak Point in the early 1900’s.  The Tide Goes North is concerned with the complexities of human interaction between the Pacific Salmon and the immediate environment of the Bristol Bay watershed.  Having spent 13 weeks over the last two years on Nushagak Point, this work addresses the concept of sustainability between man and nature in a time of uncertainty of future destruction.  If this mine is built, the salmon ecosystem will cease to exist.  Preserving the people and landscape is the main reason for my work in this area.

The Tide Goes North 3

The Tide Goes North 3

F-Stop: Can you discuss your process for making these images or your creative process more generally? What were you looking to capture?

TR: I took a fairly simple and natural approach to making these images and decided not to interfere with what the people were doing and set out to capture mostly natural moments.  I didn’t want my presence to shape a photograph in any way, this is something I struggled with on the daily and I don’t think I was successful in that sense, mostly due to the fact that I was working in large and medium formats.

F-Stop: Do you think that it is possible for a photographer to not shape or affect a photograph they take?

TR: Yes, I think it’s possible, but in my situation, I was making large format portraits of people I’d never met, and in this case I think people are generally interested in the camera which creates a conversation of its own.  At that point I feel direction is needed to achieve the desired feeling, so interfering with the moment is inevitable.

F-Stop: What do you hope people see or feel or perhaps learn when they look at your photographs?

TR: The conversation in these images is one that questions sustainability between man and nature in a time of uncertainty. When people look at these images I hope they think about the way they interact with nature and the affect that we have on it, whether the affect is positive or negative, I’m interested in questioning both sides.

The Tide Goes North 4

The Tide Goes North 4

F-Stop: Do you have a favorite image in this series? If so, which one and why is it the image that speaks to you most?

TR: I don’t think I do have a favorite image from this project, instead I feel that this is my favorite body of work I have created. It was a big transition for me from how I used to photograph and I feel it has opened a door into my mind of how to see the world. If I can approach other projects similar to the way I’ve approached this one then I think I will be on the right path.

F-Stop: Are you working on any other projects currently?

TR: I’ve been working on a project revolving around found objects and the places they were found with hopes of creating a narrative about the person who left the objects behind. I’m currently in the process of making into a book and I’m excited to see where it goes.

The Tide Goes North 7

The Tide Goes North 7

F-Stop: What photographers or other artists inspire you?

TR: I’m inspired by other artists and photographers working to make a difference in this world. There is a bigger picture that we all need to talk about. There is so much in this world that is unknown, those who are interested in what we do not know are the ones that inspire me.

For more of Terry Ratzlaff’s work: www.terryaratzlaff.com

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@ KLOMPCHING GALLERY

Adrienn with Mosaic ©Bill Durgin

Adrienn with Mosaic ©Bill Durgin

the wall/the page/the internet FRESH 2015
July 8–August 1, 2015

Artist Reception: July 8th, 6:00–8:00pm

FRESH 2015 is co-curated by Darren Ching and Debra Klomp Ching, from an international open call for submissions. Five new voices are presented, each presenting distinct bodies of work, but united in bringing the subject of the photograph(y) itself into scrutiny through their different methodologies of merging subject and image construction.

KLOMPCHING GALLERY
89 Water Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

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