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Saturday, 16 July 2011

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Wang Qingsong and other Chinese photographers were featured in a Photo Festival Naarden in Holland.
See, "Visit to FotoFestival Naarden 2001", at www.efn.org/~hkrieger/fotofest.htm

Interesting. Thank you for the assessment Roger.

What we need in North America is Les Rencontres de Waukesha.

Pity about the Mexican Suitcase show. I saw the show at ICP in New York, and it was excellently presented there - facsinating. And yes, there was a 'suitcase' - a cardboard case full of rolls of (substitute - the originals are too precious) negatives.

I saw "The Mexican Suitcase" and Wang Qingsong "When Worlds Collide" at the Photography Center in NY City this April. Both very impressive.

I thought it strange though that the giant Wang Qingsong prints were tacked onto the wall with push pins. I wonder if someone is going to take home some very used and abused (but quite impressive) prints when the exhibit is over. Wang is an artist with a capital "A".

For "The Mexican Suitcase" the suitcase (a cheap brown one) was on display with handmade eggcrate dividers to hold the individual rolls of film. So yes, there was a suitcase.

-Tom-

It's too bad about The Mexican Suitcase. I saw the exhibit in New York in June and it was fantastic.

This was one of the coolest venues as the Museum of Antiquities is air conditioned. Why heat the room with lamps?

I have one bone to pick and that's that the all-in ticket allows only one admission to each exhibit – no repeats (should one be interested).

The exhibit was interesting – you saw what use was made of the pictures taken by the three photographers, Capa, Seymour, and Taro.

For photo fans a great way to spend a few days wandering through the town and environs – catching glimpses or talking with the many festival guests (wearing their bright orange plastic badges on lanyards).

Got my free portrait taken with the Olympus Pen next to the town square and the next day went to the product presentation. All very swell.

From Wang's site: "This image is printed onto a whole roll of Kodak paper. Actually I don’t care about history. I am only interested in the extreme length of a photoe. If there is a 100-meter-long photo paper, I will be able to put in a lot more “valuable” stuff and create a 100-meter long photo. " (sic)

At a big show in Los Angeles earlier in the year I asked a gallery owner what he thought about all the new Chinese works. He said, much of it seemed to be about trying to make a big splash, with not much substance behind the work.

"At a big show in Los Angeles earlier in the year I asked a gallery owner what he thought about all the new Chinese works. He said, much of it seemed to be about trying to make a big splash, with not much substance behind the work."

If there's anything I have a stereotyped knee-jerk reaction against, it's the knee-jerk stereotyping of peoples' art based on some vague generalized disapprobation by someone else....

[g]

Can I at least suggest you see it for yourself before dismissing it?

Mike

"What we need in North America is Les Rencontres de Waukesha."

You laugh, but Waukesha actually wouldn't be a bad venue for such a thing. We have a compact, dense downtown that's well suited to sidewalk fairs, open country on three sides, a large fairgrounds, and our own airport. And we're twenty minutes from the largest city in the region (Milwaukee) and less than two hours from Chicago's O'Hare.

Mike

"Waukesha actually wouldn't be a bad venue for such a thing"

In 1970, a photographer, a writer and an historian founded the "Rencontres d'Arles".

Now, who in Waukesha would be both a photographer, a writer and possibly an historian...

Andre,
An interesting but purely hypothetical question--would you prefer that I start a festival and close TOP, or continue TOP and not start a festival? I'm assuming I couldn't do both....

Mike

I've noticed the same thing myself, Mike. (My own opinion, and perception). Lots of flash, and sensation, but not much depth. But these are usually conceptual images, as is Wang's image.

Wang seems to support this in his own words:

From Wang's site: "This image is printed onto a whole roll of Kodak paper. Actually I don’t care about history. I am only interested in the extreme length of a photoe. If there is a 100-meter-long photo paper, I will be able to put in a lot more “valuable” stuff and create a 100-meter long photo. " (sic)

As someone who holds down a day job, follows and comments on rather too many online forums and email lists, takes photographs, and has on occasion worked on as many as three science fiction conventions at once (including being chairman, on the executive committee, or being treasurer now and again), I'm not nearly as sure of the "can be only one" thing as you seem to be.

But if you don't want to start the festival, don't let people push you into it. (I have no real idea what the chances of making such a thing work are, anyway.)

(Not) coincidentally, Aperture is releasing a fat 456-page book in September of the NYT Magazine photographs.

Great review of the opening week. As always, it was too much to take in this years edition. I like the notion of 6 festivals happening at the same time.

It was also my impression that people were impressed by the Salgado prints. I was told that it is one guy, in London I suppose, who is applying a certain kind of bleaching technique while printing.

Anyway. I wasn't too much impressed by the prints. In my opinion it was overdone. Kind of like the clarity slider in the digital darkroom. Impressive yes, but not my kind of style.

I agree on your critique regarding the Mexican Suitcase Show. But I did endure the guided tour with Cynthia Young. It was overrun, but after more and more people dropped out, it turned out very intimate and informative.

If you are knowledgeable of some German and interested in my opinion of this years Rencontres I invite you to visit my blog over at http://www.mittleresgrau.de/veranstaltung/ein-rueckblick-auf-das-rencontres-darles-2011-foto-fesitval/article706/ .

Greetings from Germany
Till

Hey I just saw on a site called dpreview, a review of some photo manipulating software for the ipad, see it here http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/snapseed/
I really do think Ctein is not looking at all well. What have you been doing to himM

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