Tuesday, November 8, 2016


Harvey Benge - Paris, November 2008

I'm in Paris for Paris Photo from Wednesday November 9 until November 17... and London a week after that. If any photo friends feel like a coffee or a beer, whatever... please get in touch: harvey.benge@xtra.co.nz

Harvey Benge - Paris, November 2008

Monday, November 7, 2016

The geometry of framing, shapes within the frame


This short YouTube video is worth checking out. Although it deals with cinematography, I think you'll agree that the ideas apply to still photography as well. Basically different shapes within the frame convey different meaning.

You can go to the YouTube video HERE.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Japanese Photography from Postwar to Now at San Francisco MoMA

Lieko Shiga, Tomlinson FC, from the series Lilly, 2005

Back in October I was pleased to get a preview of the the show - Japanese Photography from Postwar to Now. Curated by Sandra Phillips the show opened October 15 and runs until March 12, 2017.

SF MoMA say this: One of the most significant contributions to the art of photography comes from postwar Japan. After World War II, the country began to produce film and camera equipment, supporting a large amateur photography culture and sponsoring native photographers as important artistic producers. This exhibition highlights SFMOMA’s considerable collection of Japanese photography, focusing on generous gifts from our community and the important donation of the Kurenboh Collection, Tokyo. Japanese Photography from Postwar to Now includes photographs from the 1960s, when major figures such as Shomei Tomatsu and Daido Moriyama investigated Americanization and industrial growth; the more personal and performative work of Nobuyoshi Araki and Eikoh Hosoe; and photography addressing the present culture and the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Organized thematically, the show explores topics such as Japan’s relationship with America, changes in the city and countryside, and the emergence of women, especially Miyako Ishiuchi, Rinko Kawauchi, and Lieko Shiga, as significant contributors to contemporary Japanese photography. 

This is an immersive show which touches all the bases and is the best overview of Japanese photography I've seen.

See more on the SF MoMA site HERE.

Eikoh Hosoe, Kamaitachi #17, 1965

Tsunehisa Kimura, Untitled, 1977

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Sunny October in San Francisco - first images


San Francisco, October 4 to 8. Up hill and down dale, sun shining. Nice. Here are some of the first images I've printed.

Polycopies - an authentic photography experience in Paris, not to be missed!

© Koji Onaka

If you are in Paris next week for Paris Photo do not miss going along to Polycopies on the boat Concorde-Atlantique moored on the Siene a few minutes walk from the Grand Palais.
Founded in 2014 by the photo luminaries Laurent Chardon and Sebastian Hau, as always Polycopies is a total dedication to the photo book. I describe then event as authentic, it is that because at Polycopies there is a chance to meet the photographers (this year Pieter Hugo, Takashi Homma, JH Engström and Roger Ballen among many others) and publishers all of different stripes. All brought together in an intimate setting.

Polycopies say this: Since 2014 Polycopies has been hosting every year a selection of 35 specialised international photo book publishers. Polycopies is an association for the distribution and promotion of the photographic edition, which for four days during Paris-Photo becomes a large ephemeral bookshop, a space completely dedicated to photo books. Although Polycopies is first of all a market place, it has also become an important place to meet where a lively crowd of amateurs, collectors, photographers and publishers of different horizons share and confront their ideas on photography, better understand the stakes of publishing, exchange on discoveries made and favorite books, or even show their book dummies and see new projects come to live.
Exhibitors this year include:

Polycopies is open:
Wednesday Nov. 09: noon to 9pm / Thursday Nov. 10: 11am to 9pm / Friday Nov. 11: 11am to 10:30pm / Saturday Nov. 12: 11am to 6pm.

You can go to the Polycopies website HERE for among other things a list of the book signings.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Sunday, October 30, 2016

David Salle tells it like it is... Looking, Talking and Thinking about Art

In his new book 2. 1. 3. to how see, Looking, Talking and Thinking about Art, painter David Salle cuts to the chase in this assembly of his critical essays. Salle has the knack of avoiding bullshit and theoretical cul de sac's. His writing gets directly to the guts of what it's about to make art that works. Great art even.

I particularly liked what he had to say in an essay about artist Dana Schutz: Remember talent? A person who is said to have talent can do something: often it's physical, like throwing a football or playing the cello. Then there is imagination; the difference between it and talent is often misunderstood. Imagination fuels talent and funnels into it, but on its own lacks body. Today talent is easily confused with knowingness or a desire for attention, and what passes for imagination is often nothing more than a reshuffling of cultural signs. That's fashion. Occasionally an artist comes along with both talent and real imagination as well as the ability to combine them - to cast an original idea into pictorial form... as with all effective art, the greatness is partly a matter of the imagination behind it and partly a matter of style.

For more on David Salle you can go to his website HERE. And if you're interested you can go to amazon HERE to get a copy of 2.1.3.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Jim Goldberg - Raised by Wolves bootleg


Jim Goldberg writes:

Dear Friends and Family, 

As some of you may already know, I have just self-published (what many consider my most iconic work) Raised By Wolves, as a xerox-style Bootleg version.
The original book is largely unavailable except at very high prices - and with this new edition, an entirely new generation will have access. It’s also a way to re-stock all those school libraries that have had RBW stolen off their shelves. 

I am having a book signing on November 12th at Uptown in San Francisco from 3-5pm, where I'll be signing each book in a unique way. I hope to see you all there. If you know of anyone who can't make it or is interested in purchasing Raised By Wolves (Bootleg)... 

Here's the link: jimgoldberg.com If you’ve already purchased the book, many thanks.


Often considered Goldberg’s seminal project, Raised by Wolves combines ten years of original photographs, text, and other illustrative elements (home movie stills, snapshots, drawings, diary entries, and images of discarded belongings) to document the lives of runaway teenagers in San Francisco and Los Angeles. The book quickly became a classic in the photobook canon and, thus, the original is essentially unavailable.

In the spirit of Tweeky Dave, Goldberg is releasing a xerox style bootleg version of the book with numerous surprises inserted by the artist. At 9x12 inches, the same size as the original, the re-issue features 320 color and black and white pages, perfect bound, with a color softcover. Raised By Wolves Bootleg re-issue - $100 plus shipping*

William Eggleston - The Democratic Forest at David Zwirner NYC

William Eggleston - Untitled from The Democratic Forest, c. 1983-1986

David Zwirner New York presents its first exhibition with William Eggleston since having announced the gallery’s exclusive worldwide representation of the artist. On view at 537 West 20th Street in New York will be works from Eggleston’s monumental project The Democratic Forest.

Over the course of nearly six decades, Eggleston has established a singular pictorial style that deftly combines vernacular subject matter with an innate and sophisticated understanding of color, form, and composition. His photographs transform the ordinary into distinctive, poetic images that eschew fixed meaning. His 1976 solo exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art, New York, curated by John Szarkowski, marked the first presentation of color photography at the museum. Although initially criticized for its unfamiliar approach, the show and its accompanying catalogue, William Eggleston’s Guide, heralded an important moment in the medium’s acceptance within the art historical canon, and it solidified the artist’s position as one of its foremost practitioners to this date. Eggleston’s work continues to exert an influence on contemporary visual culture at large.

The Democratic Forest is among Eggleston’s most ambitious projects and a prime example of his uniquely recognizable aesthetic. Likened to an epic journey or an enduring narrative, it comprises a careful selection of works from over ten thousand negatives he took in the mid-1980s across the southern and eastern parts of America and in several European countries. These photographs of rural back roads, industrial and residential environs, architectural details, restaurant interiors, and parking lots, among other locales, eluded the conventions of both reportage and the black-and-white art photography practiced by many of the artist’s peers at the time, and instead shaped their own definition of what a photographic image could be—intuitive and charged with imaginative possibilities. Collectively, the project echoes Eggleston’s predilection for the “democratic” vision of the camera, able to render equally what is in front of the lens.

The exhibition runs October 27 - December 17, 2016. There is a  catalogue published by David Zwirner Books/Steidl on the occasion of the show.

You can read more on artdaily HERE 

William Eggleston - Untitled from The Democratic Forest, c. 1983-1986

William Eggleston - Untitled from The Democratic Forest, c. 1983-1986

William Eggleston - Untitled from The Democratic Forest, c. 1983-1986