Your Weekly Mixx! DAF’s Weekly Mixx is a selection of contemporary art and/or art related videos chosen from artist and gallery submissions and from our own search for new and interesting works. This week, we feature the work of Kate MccGuire, Herakut, David Alexander, Gonzalo Garcia Calvo, Jessica Eve Rattner, Rick Berry, Sergey Kalinin, Zemer Peled and a video with Greg “Craola” Simkins painting his piece “When Life Give’s Lemons”.
The Leibovitz family moved frequently with her father’s duty assignments in the U.S. Air Force and Annie took her first photos when they were stationed in the Philippines during the Vietnam War. Leibovitz studied painting at the San Francisco Art Institute and after a summer trip to Japan with her mother, she began taking night classes in photography and developed her skills as a photographer. Early influences include Robert Frank and Henri Cartier-Bresson.
In 1970, Leibovitz approached the editor of the recently launched Rolling Stone Magazine for employment. Her first assignment was a photo shoot with John Lennon and her photo appeared on the January 1971 issue. Leibovitz was named chief photographer two years later.
In 1980, Leibovitz was sent to photograph John Lennon and Yoko Ono and created the now-famous Lennon nude curled around a fully clothed Ono. Several hours after the photo shoot, Lennon was shot and killed. The photograph ran on the cover of Rolling Stone Lennon commemorative issue and in 2005 was named best magazine cover from the past 40 years by the American Society of Magazine Editors.
In 1983, Leibovitz became a contributing photographer for Vanity Fair magazine and became known for her provocative celebrity portraits including Whoopie Goldberg, Demi Moore, Brad Pitt, Ellen DeGeneres, Queen Elizabeth II, and countless others. Her portraits have also been featured in national media including Vogue, The New York Times, The New Yorker, as well as media ads for American Express, the Gap, and the Milk Board.
Leibovitz began a long-term romantic relationship with writer Susan Sontag in 1989. Sontag had a strong influence on her work including her photos documenting the Balkan war in Sarajevo and Women, a book they published together in 2000. The couple lived apart but maintained a close relationship until Sontag’s death in 2004.
Leibovitz has received numerous awards including a Commandeur des Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government as well as designation as a living legend by the Library of Congress. In 1991, she had her first museum show at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C. – a show that toured internationally for six years.
With several book publications under her belt, Leibovitz’s most recent book A Photographer’s Life: 1990-2005 features her trademark celebrity portraits as well as personal photographs from her own life.
Leibovitz has three children, Sarah Cameron who was born when Leibovitz was 51 years old, and twins Susan and Samuelle who were born to a surrogate mother in May 2005.
To see more of Annie Leibovitz’s photographs visit Contact Press. There is also a PBS documentary called Annie Leibovitz, Life Through a Lens that features interviews from celebrities and with the photographer about the her work over the last few decades.
Your Weekly Mixx! DAF’s Weekly Mixx is a selection of contemporary artworks and/or art related videos chosen from artist and gallery submissions and from our own search for new and interesting works. This week, we feature the work of Michael Adamson, Bordalo II, Guennadi Kalinine, Christina Mrozik, Derick Melander, Molly Wood, Oleg Oprisco, Nicole Watt and a video on the installation “Narcissism : Dazzle room” by Shigeki Matsuyama. This installation is one of a series of dazzle camouflage themed works the artist has been creating since 2013.
Dazzle camouflage was a type of ship camouflage used during World War I. As its name suggests, it was meant to dazzle and confuse the human eye. In an era where radar technology did not exist, an enemy vessel’s range and heading needed to be visually identified for targeting. The complex black and white patterns painted on ships with dazzle camouflage made it difficult to ascertain whether a target was moving closer or farther away and prevented accurate firing.
The person in the room covered with dazzle camouflage uploads selfies to social media while surrounded by a larger self representing narcissism. In an era where much communication occurs over social media, metrics such as likes and follows fulfill our desire for recognition; however, the ease of which we can obtain validation from others leads to the growth of this desire, and we attempt to satiate it using our self-image or “larger self.” The boundary between self and self-image is unconsciously blurred by dazzle camouflage, and as a result, we ourselves cease to recognize our own boundaries. (via vimeo)
Your Weekly Mixx! DAF’s Weekly Mixx is a selection of contemporary artworks and/or art related videos chosen from artist and gallery submissions and from our own search for new and interesting works. This week, we feature the work of Carlos Garaicoa, Dan Tirels, Eric Esterle, Michaël Husser, Gilles Bensimon, Kiki Xue, Linda Jacobson, Shai Yossef and a video from the Whitney Museum of American Art, Human Interest: Martha Wilson on John Coplans, artist Martha Wilson discusses honesty in John Coplans’s portrait Frieze, No. 2, Four Panels, 1994 and her own.
If you would like your work featured in the Weekly Mixx, visit the Submissions page for information on how to apply.
Your Weekly Mixx! DAF’s Weekly Mixx is a selection of contemporary artworks and/or art related videos chosen from artist and gallery submissions and from our own search for new and interesting works. This week, we feature the work of Alexandre Alonso, Dan May, Donald Martiny, Firelei Baez, Francis Krieg, Isabelle Wenzel, Yh Lee, Marta Spendows, and Henrique Oliveira.
If you would like your work featured in the weekly mixx, visit the Submissions page for information on how to apply.
I’d certainly known it (slavery) existed in the world, but not to such a degree. I felt so horrible and honestly ashamed of my own lack of knowledge of this attrocity in my own lifetime. And I thought, if I don’t know, how many other people don’t know.”
—Lisa Kristine, Humanitarian Photographer
Humanitarian photographer Lisa Kristine uses her powerful images and intimate portrayals to elevate awareness of social causes such as modern slavery. The United Nations estimates there are approximately 27 to 30 million individuals caught in the slave trade industry today.
In furthering its mission to advance freedom and combat slavery and human trafficking, the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center recently invited Lisa Kristine to Cincinnati to open her exhibit, ENSLAVED: A Visual Story of Modern Day Slavery, which was on display at the Freedom Center through August 31, 2016.
About the exhibition: “ENSLAVED, A Visual Story of Modern Day Slavery documents the lives endured by slaves and celebrates the freedom they never dreamed possible. ENSLAVED is a powerful statement about one of the greatest human rights abuses of our time. The images capture the experience of a moment lived in slavery, allowing the viewer to peek into the lives of those who are ENSLAVED. What we see are two undeniable truths – the extreme brutality of the situation, and the resilience of the human spirit. The exhibition portrays survivors who are now rebuilding their lives and helping others to freedom.” (via enslavedexhibitions.com)
About Lisa Kristine: “Humanitarian photographer Lisa Kristine creates more than images, she inspires change. A master storyteller, Lisa documents indigenous cultures in more than 100 countries on six continents, instinctively identifying the universal human dignity in all of us. Awakening compassion and igniting action in a worldwide audience with powerful, broad-sweeping images of courage and tender, intimate portrayals, Lisa elevates significant social causes—such as the elimination of human slavery and the unification of humanity—to missions. Her work resonates in the heart and moves us to act. Best known for her evocative and saturated use of color, her fine art prints are among the most sought after and collected in the world.”
Learn the stories behind the photos below by visiting enslavedexhibitions.com.
All images copyright © Lisa Kristine.
Your Weekly Mixx! DAF’s Weekly Mixx is a selection of contemporary artworks and/or art related videos chosen from artist and gallery submissions and from our own search for new and interesting works. This week, we feature the work of Gemmy Woud-Binnedjik, Brad Jesson, Iva Gueorguieva, Rachel Ducker, Warren King, Coroso Zundert, Gemma Capdevila, and short video Aether – a spatial audio-visual collaboration between musician Max Cooper and architects Satyajit Das and Regan Appleton. It plays on the beauty of fundamental natural forms – waves, surfaces, symmetries and surreal landscapes, as the building blocks and underlying structure of the world around us – a modern interpretation of the luminiferous aether.
Your Weekly Mixx! DAF’s Weekly Mixx is a selection of contemporary artworks and/or art related videos chosen from artist and gallery submissions and from our own search for new and interesting works. This week, we feature the work of Antony Gormley, Flora Borsi, Herakut, Kyle Stewart, Max Serradifalco, Murray Mcculloch, Scott Marr, Tony Cragg and a video by More Than who recently commissioned a unique art exhibition for dogs from British artist and inventor Dominic Wilcox. Wilcox’s interactive exhibits include ‘Cruising Canines’ – an open car window simulator, ‘Dinnertime Dreams’ – an oversized 10 foot dog bowl filled to the brim with hundreds of play balls to look like dog food, and ‘Watery Wonder’ – a series of dancing water jets that jump from one dog bowl to the next for dogs to chase. A selection of paintings and drawings created in a dog’s colour spectrum are also on display at the exhibition for the visiting dogs to enjoy.
Since I’m inarticulate, I express myself with images. —Helen Levitt
Born on August 31, 1913 in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, New York, Helen Levitt was once called (by David Strauss in a 1997 Artforum International article) “the most celebrated and least known photographer of her time.” Perhaps this lack of recognition stems from Levitt’s tendency to be an “intensely private” person who did not seek fame and rarely gave interviews. Perhaps it was because she did not wish to assign “social meaning” to her photographs—a lesson she learned after meeting photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson—that a photograph could “stand up by itself.”
Leaving high school in her senior year, Levitt began working in 1931 for the commercial portrait photographer J. Florian Mitchell, who was known to the family. “I helped in darkroom printing and developing,” she said. “My salary was six bucks a week.” It was during this time that she taught herself photography.
Levitt was influenced by the photographic styles of Henri Cartier-Bresson, Walker Evans, and Ben Shahn. She met and accompanied Cartier-Bresson on a photographic shoot of the Brooklyn waterfront in 1935 and the following year, bought a second hand Leica, the camera Cartier-Bresson preferred. Between 1938-39, Levitt was mentored by and worked with Walker Evans but she gave more credit to photographer Ben Shahn and his gritty photos of New York of the 1930s.
Levitt found success early on, and in July 1939, her work was published in Fortune magazine. In 1940, her Halloween photograph was included in the inaugural exhibition at Museum of Modern Art as part of its new photography section. In 1943, Levitt had her first solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art (Helen Levitt: Photographs of Children March 10-April 18).
In a rare interview in 2001 for NPR, Levitt talked about her street photography: “It was a very good neighbourhood for taking pictures in those days, because that was before television, there was a lot happening. And then the older people would sometimes be sitting out on the stoops because of the heat. They didn’t have air conditioning in those days. It was, don’t forget, in the late ’30s. So those neighbourhoods were very active.” (listen to/read the interview)
Levitt also worked in film and spent most of her time from 1949-59 as a full-time film editor and director. Notably, during this period, she worked on two documentary films, In the Street with friend and painter Janice Loeb and the writer James Agee, and The Quiet One (1948). The Quiet One writers, Sidney Meyers, Loeb, and Levitt, were nominated for the Best Writing, Story and Screenplay Academy Award. The film was also nominated for Best Documentary Feature. The National Board of Review named it the second best film of 1949. Levitt continued working in film making for almost twenty-five years.
When Levitt returned to photography in 1959, she was among the first photographers to work in colour. She received Guggenheim fellowships in 1959 and 1960 for these projects. Sadly, a great deal of Levitt’s early colour work was stolen from her New York apartment in the late 1960s.
Comprehensive surveys of Levitt’s work were held at the Sidney Janis Gallery in New York in 1980 and at the Laurence Miller Gallery in 1987. However, it was not until 1991 that she gained significant recognition when the first national retrospective of her work at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art was held. The exhibition showed at other major museums including the International Center for Photography, New York (1997), and the Centre National la Photographie, Paris (2001). In 2007, Helen Levitt: Un Art de l’accident poetique, opened at the Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson in Paris. In 2008, Levitt was the recipient of the Spectrum International Photography Prize which included a major retrospective at the Sprengel Museum in Hannover, Germany. Also in the fall of 2008, a major retrospective was held at FOAM Museum in Amsterdam. In that same year, Levitt received the Francis Greenburger award for excellence in the arts.
On March 29, 2009, Helen Levitt died in her sleep at the age of 95.
James Agee (1909-1955), a good friend of Levitt, wrote “Helen Levitt’s photographs seem to me as beautiful, perceptive, satisfying, and enduring as any lyrical work that I know. In their general quality and coherence, moreover, the photographs as a whole body, as a book, seem to me to combine into a unified view of the world, an uninsistent but irrefutable manifesto of a way of seeing, and in a gentle and wholly unpretentious way, a major poetic work.“
All images copyright © The Estate of Helen Levitt
Born Emmanuel Radnitzky on August 27, 1890 in Philadelphia, PA, Man Ray was an influential artist, best known for his avant-garde photography. He was a leading figure (and the only American) to play a significant role in the Dada and Surrealist movements.
Ray grew up in Brooklyn, New York and showed artistic ability at an early age. He studied drawing under Robert Henri and George Bellows at the Francisco Ferrer Social Center (Modern School). Upon his completion of his classes, Ray lived in the art colony of Ridgefield, New Jersey. There, he illustrated, designed and produced small pamphlets (Ridgefield Gazook – 1915) and A Book of Diverse Writings.
Ray had his first solo show at the Daniel Gallery in New York in 1915 and shortly after became interested in photography. Around the same time, he became friends with Marcel Duchamp with whom he founded the Society of Independent Artists in 1916. In 1920, along with Duchamp, Katherine Dreier, Henry Hudson, and Andrew McLaren, Ray founded the Société Anonyme, a group that sponsored lectures, concerts, publications, and exhibitions of modern art.
In 1921, May Ray moved to Paris where he settled for twenty years. He became involved with Dada and Surrealist artists and writers such as Jean Cocteau, Max Ernst, Salvador Dali, Paul Eluard, Pablo Picasso, and others. While in Paris, Ray worked with different media and produced a variety of works. In 1922, he began experimenting with his version of a photogram which he called a “rayograph” – the process of creating images from placing objects on photo-sensitive paper. Ray likened his technique to painting saying that he was “painting with light”.
In the 1920s and 30s Ray earned a steady income as a portrait photographer and as one of the foremost fashion photographers for Harper’s Bazaar, Vu, and Vogue. In the late 1920s Ray won recognition for his experiments with Sabattier (solarization process) and many of the Surrealists followed his example of using photography in their works.
Man Ray also made his mark in the avant-garde film circles in the 1920s. In “Le Retour à la Raison”, he created his first “cine-rayographs’ – sequences of cameraless photographs. Other films including “Emak Bakia” (1926), L’Etoile de Mer” (1928), and Les Mystères du Château de Dé” (1929) are now classics of the Surrealist film genre.
In 1940, at the beginning of World War II, Man Ray left Paris and moved to Los Angeles where he focused on painting and creating objects. While there, he also met and married Juliet Browner, a dancer and artists’ model. He remained in LA until 1951 when he returned to his home in Paris. He continued working in a variety of mediums, but it was to be his photography that would have the greatest impact on 20th century art. In 1963, he published his autobiography “Self-Portrait”.
Man Ray died in Paris on November 18, 1976. His epitaph at the Cimetière du Montparnasse, reads: “unconcerned, but not indifferent”. Juliet Browner died in 1991 and she was interred in the Ray’s tomb. Her epitaph reads, “together again”. Before her death, Browner had set up a charitable trust and donated much of Ray’s work to museums.