Jeff Koons sued for appropriating 1980s gin ad in art work sold for millions | Art and design | The Guardian

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The artist is being sued by a photographer who claims that Koons’s 1986 work I Could Go For Something Gordon’s used his photograph without permission

Source: Jeff Koons sued for appropriating 1980s gin ad in art work sold for millions | Art and design | The Guardian
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Sean O'Hagan's top 10 photography shows of 2015 | Art and design | The Guardian

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There was Julia Margaret Cameron’s mystical iconoclasm, Maxine Walker’s questions about Black British life and a disturbingly compelling show of forensic evidence – but Alex Soth’s haunted landscapes and eccentric outsiders were what really lingered...



Source: Sean O'Hagan's top 10 photography shows of 2015 | Art and design | The Guardian
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A diversion in Iceland...

There will be more to follow with some thoughts on a visit to an art gallery and photography museum, but here are a few photographs from the trip... The light started off amazing, but viewed through a coach (and plane) window, then it quickly got dark. More travelling by coach with a few stops at touristic places (Geysir and Gullfoss, etc.) and then more travelling. Lots of snow, and low light with a compact camera (I was travelling with hand luggage only), so not necessarily the greatest images in terms of pixel quality, but there’s something about them for me.

Here they are:
Reykjavik2Iceland1Iceland3Iceland4Logberg

They’re all colour photographs, although might not necessarily appear to be at first glance.

There are the “through window” photographs I need to consider further, I might make a little mini-series out of them.
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TYB : First Thoughts

Well, it seems that it will be ok to put my work up for display a week or two after the March 14th deadline (presentation day), although of course I will have to include the documentation of the actual display within the journal and write up.

So, beyond what I was mentioning the other day, what are my first thoughts?

Displaying Le Loupe... in France is the basic concept, and it was always going to be something of an idea. I had initially thought about some form of gallery context for the display (well, after the book form), but now I’m looking of pushing those boundaries, taking the work outside the conventional environment. I mentioned the Tourist Information Office the other day, or perhaps the mairie. Now, I’m thinking that I’d like to see the work scattered across the region on local village notice boards, reflecting the fact that the photographs have been taken across that region. The fact that the notice boards are an occasional subject in these photographs isn’t lost either.

Spreading the work out, an image here and an image there will weaken the narrative aspects, which is fine - it’s not pure documentary anyway. What I might look at doing is providing some background information, perhaps through a linked website where people can see the other related works. It becomes the glue for disparate works that will be lacking in context in isolation.

As it stands, I’m not sure what is involved in gaining access to these notice boards. I’m guessing it will be via the mairie, or maybe the bibliotheque or poste (assuming there is one close by). I’m in France soon, so I will start to ask these questions. I can also look at other places that might be options for display... I had thought of some guerrilla postings, but if I link to website, there might be repercussions, which is something I’m not keen on experiencing (bureaucracy can be problematic for an easy life!). I also need to find all these boards..

As for the website, obviously it should contain some form of gallery for the images, but also some context, maybe a map for the images that are displayed. An open comments section? Or maybe just a contact form? Things to think about - I’ve not got these solutions yet.

Also, how to print? To what size? Initial thoughts are that they should be maybe A4 or so, but whether these should be photographic or poster style prints, I don’t know. Some of the information boards are completely exposed to the elements, some might be behind glass, or even inside. I don’t know. Inkjet prints will be waterproof (from a better grade printer, I’m not talking a cheap inkjet...), they’re certainly diesel proof anyway as the Ruscha Gasoline Stations Revisited project has proven. How durable they’d be when exposed though... Actually, I think that’s part of the interest for me, how things will last. Will they last? Will they be removed from the boards? Will they just decompose or fade? Board use might be time limited, so this might not be much of a consideration.

Maybe the prints should be a little bigger? Maybe I need different sizes for different info boards? Maybe some places will want things smaller, post card sized?

I’ll start to test the water, weigh the options and make some decisions with the aim of having things ready for Easter.
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TYB : Testing Boundaries

The Testing Boundaries part of the module is designed to do just that. And I can tell you, it feels quite intimidating.

Les Bicknell kicked off with a slide presentation outlining the aims of the project, which to cut a long story short is to put your work out there in a way that is appropriate yet not what might normally be done. There was talk of Open House events (not going to happen - I wouldn't want strangers coming around to my house, which is in any case in the middle of nowhere and somewhat small), Open Studio events (I don't have a studio as such, certainly not one that isn't part of my house), Shop Windows and Hospitals. There were other things too...

The more... difficult part of the session came with thinking who to put your work out there and describing those first thoughts to the group. Well, no, not difficult, but in some ways yes... If you consider my current project, the obvious thought would be to present it in some way in France (well, Finistère actually), and as the project has multiple streams, one of which is the emptying of the region, it might be considered that a venue could be tourist information offices, the mairie or maybe libraries... Would they want it to be shown there though? It could be argued that it can paint a somewhat negative image at times; burnt out cars, graffiti and empty premises and no people... Yes, it could be a tough sell.

Another option might be to see if I could make use of public information boards (like the one below), pinning to the boards for it to either remain or be removed. Or perhaps postcards distributed somehow. Or empty shop fronts. Or perhaps something totally different.

Trabrivan2
Trabrivan

The distance involved will be challenging, to say the least. The fact that I'm only there intermittently even more so, especially as there is a mid-March deadline and I will only be there probably once before that time, maybe twice if I'm lucky... I think this really is a non-starter in terms of achieving it by March.

Do I therefore need to think about something else instead? What about making use of last year's Ruscha project, or even the Stephen Shore stuff from the making day? How can I make use of the GSV images? How can I present them? A small part of Ruscha's Gasoline Stations Revisited will be making an appearance in a show in Los Angeles this week, what else can I do with it? Do I go back to some earlier work? Some thinking is clearly required!
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Jeff Wall: 'I'm haunted by the idea that my photography was all a big mistake' | Art and design | The Guardian

Jeff Wall: 'I'm haunted by the idea that my photography was all a big mistake'He provokes anger, awe and huge prices for his controversial staged scenes of hostage situations and homeless shelters. The pioneer of ‘non-photography’ talks cliches, creative freedom – and his regrets Just enough to keep you guessing …


“In my time, I’ve been accused of being afraid to go out into the world to take pictures, like a so-called ‘real’ photographer does,” Jeff Wall tells me, smiling. “And I’ve been accused of making art with a capital A – as if that, too, was a crime.”



Source: Jeff Wall: 'I'm haunted by the idea that my photography was all a big mistake' | Art and design | The Guardian



His work is a carefully constructed retelling of a witnessed event, but here he talks about chance... seems contradictory but sensical.
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Notes from the Crit

Monday's crit session was a good one I feel, again with interesting work being created from amongst the cohort. For my own presentation, the images were posted the other day (here) and the text below is what I'd prepared to guide what I wanted to say. I will have deviated from this in places, but as I said, it was guidance.

Le loup, le renard et la belette

  • It’s a working title, carrying on my habit of naming projects after songs - Le loup… is from La jument de Michao (Michao’s mare - the wolf, the fox and the weasel), a traditional Breton song that’s been recorded by a number of French recording artists/groups in different styles... (Tri Yann, Nolwenn Leroy, Manau....).
  • The project looks towards Penn-ar-Bed (Finistère) in Brittany. I have a house there, so in a way it’s personal but I’m trying not to be introspective.
  • I started out just photographing… Now there are a number of themes that I’m hoping to weave together into an extended body of work.
  • Beyond the region itself, I guess the first theme is that in the photographs, there will be frequent signs of people, but no people themselves.
  • This is because French law states that each individual has the exclusive right to their image and of who uses their image.
  • Not only publishing the image, but even taking a photo containing someone, the photographer has to have their permission.
  • This then gives another theme, which is that the emptiness this creates is also representative of the fact that Brittany is emptying - the region is largely rural offers few real employment prospects.
  • Isolation, charm, otherness, toughness/resilience, a step away from modernity, nostalgia are all things I’ll also be hoping to capture. There is a resistance to the stereotypical French “chic”, it’s less ostentatious (unless we’re comparing tractors).
  • The area also has various legends, there are druids and it’s one of the places that King Arthur is said to have come from. The forest near Huelgoat features a Merlin’s Cave and Arthur’s Camp…
  • Another theme might be the conflict that bubbles under the surface in Brittany. It’s long been “different” to the rest of France, subjected to different taxes and the like. There are the bonnets rouges and their tax protests, protests against the airport, lack of subsidies and Brittany not being Breton…
  • All the photographs are titled with the Breton names of where they were taken. Whilst I don’t think that Breton is officially recognised as a national language, they do allow it to be taught in schools, and they’re fiercely defensive of it. Some posters and the like are only in Breton…


The comments from the chatbox during and after the presentation were - I've added some post crib notes in italics:


Susan Miller
19:38
Western Brittany is more like Cornwall than France. The Bretton language has a commonality with Welsh
(Part of Finistère is actually called "Cornouaille")

Tanya A
19:39
how big is the geographical area you are working with?
(I guessed at about 150 sq miles)

Monika Brueckner
19:39
I don´t miss poeple the emptiness tells a lot

Susan Miller
19:40
the colours in 2 and 6 work really well
(An Uhelgoad and Kenec'h David)

Caroline Wright
19:40
In a place where the people seem to hold sway with things such as the taxes, it is interesting that they are absent in the images

Monika Brueckner
19:41
but I would sort them in series
(I'll decide on this when the collection is finished and I know how I'll be presenting them - it will depend on juxtapositions, etc.)

Alison South
19:42
When I first looked at the images I thought they were constructed - there is something really detached about them - very intruiging

Máire Keogh
19:42
I love 5 & 6 - different from the other road,buidings etc. I dont think you need people?
(Ode Tredudon and Kenec'h David)

Emma Delpech
19:42
I agree Alison....

Caroline Wright
19:43
5 and 6 present a very different experience, a subset?
(I’m not actually sure if these belong...)

Susan Miller
19:43
the eeriness of 2 5 6 is quite haunting

Emma Delpech
19:44
I'll find the link...
(Emma had mentioned a photographer who shot at night with long exposures to make things look like daytime)

Máire Keogh
19:45
well maybe 5 & 6 important in portraying lack of people living in Brittany 80% of time? I found Brittany so different from other place in France

Alison South
19:45
In some of them the absence of the people is heavier - like there is a narative there

Monika Brueckner
19:45
yes

Caroline Wright
19:45
I agree

Máire Keogh

19:45
where in brittany Rob
(It’s Finistère - near Huelgoat/An Uhelgoad)

Monika Brueckner
19:46
on your homepage there is one in a garden with a blue box - great
it´s irritating
(I see these like punctuation - the "detail" photographs)

Emma Delpech
19:48
Gregory Crewdson
sorry - he's not the one I meant

Máire Keogh
19:48
do you print all /select your images
just wondering because really like no 5!!!
(When curating the finished sequence, I'll print out many 3x2s and work with those. I am planning to start printing more of my work out though)

Caroline Wright
19:50
Tell me about image no 7, the car...
(The burnt out car is a result of some protests I believe, I came across it early on a Sunday morning in Carhaix [Karaez] - not sure what the protests were about exactly, but it's probably not a coincidence that it was a British car... I like this image, but not on my wall!)

Tanya A
19:51
photojournalism vs art?
reminds me of wales… burning down the weekend houses of the english...

Caroline Wright
19:53
It is bizarre that the burn line is pretty much right down the middle, but it is also the open door that catches my eye
(we originally thought that, from across the car park, it was painted half and half, but no...)
karhaez4

Tanya A
19:53
is one of your themes the brits or the french or are they the same?
(I'd not really considered this, they're both missing yet both there - I don't think I'm differentiating)

Caroline Wright
19:54
but they are in the images indirectly through the clues you present

Emma Delpech
19:56
no people.....evidence they WERE there. Scary



So there we have it. On the whole, in response to the questions I posted, the weaving of different narratives seems to work (albeit in a very small subset as posted), although some sorting may prove useful. I'll see when I have something more substantial to sort through... The lack of people doesn't seem to bother those in the cohort who were in attendance, so that's good... And the photography seemed to get some positive response too.
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Self Publish, Be Happy! The DIY saviours of photography | Art and design | The Guardian

An army of young punks are heading up a ‘zine revolution. To mark their 5th birthday, we look at their most memorable (and most saucy) photobooks – from The Afronauts to Getting to Know My Husband’s Cock

Self Publish, Be Happy is five years old. Since its inception in May 2010, it has been at the vanguard of the self-publishing revolution, encouraging young photographers to make and release their own books, and providing a unique online hub where said books can be purchased directly from the artist.

Source: Self Publish, Be Happy! The DIY saviours of photography | Art and design | The Guardian



I've recently bought their Manifesto, not quite what I was hoping for on first impressions, but no doubt it will prove useful when I get to grips with it properly.
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