Tate Modern in May 2016

The new Tate Modern building* was inaugurated on June 17. I was there in late May and much still looked like a building site, here the turbine hall:

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Tate Modern, May 2016 © Jan Oberg

 

The main exhibit at the time was “Performing For The Arts”; curator Simon Baker talks here about it (it ended in June). It’s about how we all act – more than ever today – in front of a camera, act differently from how we would otherwise have because there is a camera.

The exhibition is very well curated, the display logic and pedagogical – covering documenting events, performances staged to be photographed, photos of actions and creative work, self-performance and selfies à la Cindy Sherman, public relations, self-portraits and performing real life – as did Amalia Ulman on Instagram.

It raises the question – why do we begin to act when a camera is around? How has the camera been serving throughout modern times as a tool to document or create art works, performances in particular.

There is an excellent review in The Guardian by a critic, Adrian Searle, who is actually participating in one of the exhibited works in which he is watching a female artist undress.

Apart from insights into the history of art – through e.g. Yves Klein, Beuys, Keith Haring – and their relations to photography, this excellent exhibition kind-of tells you what lead us up to today’s fascination with the mobile, lightweight cameras: If it is there – and it always is today with almost everyone – let’s use it for something, be it documentary, selfies, experimenting and showing others not only what we do but also who we are.

The idea and quality of sharing hasn’t changed. The quantity in which we do indeed has.

Since you were not allowed to take photos – what a pity!! – here are lots of images from Google. I still wonder why the (paying) visitor cannot take pictures when every work is already on the Internet?

Finally, about this exhibition. It wasn’t the first time I encountered the black-and-white photographic works by Francesca Woodman – as remarkable as enigmatic self-portraits, staged but nothing of the snapshot selfie-type of today.

But it was the first time I found out that she did only a few hundred photos and then committed suicide in 1981 at the age of only 22. Continue reading

Tate Britain And Tracey Emin’s Bland Bed

I’d never go to London without visiting Tate Britain or Modern or both. Always something worth seeing. The main exhibit in May 2016 was “Paiting With Light” which I have written a short info about here.

Then I explored a bit the new (2013) major renovation, after having been confused by the (upon thinking a bit, obvious) fact that the visitor has to go down to underground to access the new halls. It’s a very beautiful descent…

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To one’s surprise, in the middle of the huge hall there appear silent dancers moving in and around visitors. It is Pablo Bronstein’s “Historical Dances In An Antique Setting” – here in a long exposure photo and in that antique setting: Continue reading

Shoot # 53

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Lund, June 13, 2016
Click on images for info, link or prices 

Content  

• Photo London • OXO Fix London • Photographers’ Gallery • Tate Britain • Art Basel • SCOPE • Photo Basel
• Abstract Real Show • Global Art Magazine • Montenegro and more from:

Jan Oberg – Oberg PhotoGraphics

Dear Art Photo friend

Welcome to – improved – shoot # 53 

The above photo was shot in London in May when it turned into the international centre of photography. It’s a digital gift and will appear only here – a moment of joy sent to you from Oberg PhotoGraphics.

If you are a gallery or photographer chances are that you are mentioned in one of the articles below.

A special welcome to many new subscribers and friends on social media. Here is the preceding shoot and you’ll see that it changes a bit with this issue: Content first; more photos many of which only here and not on homepage – thus, special for you, my subscribers.

Finally, shoot will become less regular and – another new idea – sometimes I may shoot a single image your way.

shoot also leads you to the online GlobalArt Magazine that I curate. Click, inspiration guaranteed. It’s sharing of art for cultural bridgebuilding and civilisation – the opposite of war and other destruction. And it’s news from Oberg PhotoGraphics Blog. Tell a friend, send a mail. shoot is free of course!

Networking, sharing and creating positive energy is what I believe in.

I am not an art critic, I’m an art recommender. I write only positive notes, or “recommendations”. What’s the use of telling you what I find boring, bad or bull?

London
Photo London: 84 leading photo galleries exhibiting their best. Here my Photo London: Positive Notes with quite a few of my images from the fair and short texts. And here some out-of-focus shots from Somerset House. Every art event can be seen as a piece of art!


“Untitled – London in May” © Jan Oberg 2016.

On Oberg PhotoGraphics Blog some positive notes about FIX Photo at Bargehouse, OXO Wharf and here about The Photographers’ Gallery with Deutsche Börse Prize shortlisted photographers.
On June 10, Trevor Paglen was announced as this year’s winner. All four shortlisted could have won – brilliant as they were. And a recommendation of “Painting With Light” at Tate Britain.

Montenegro
Recently hiked in Montenegro’s wild nature with its majestic mountains and magic lakes. Here a few shots – nature photography as well as Gerhard Richter-inspired ‘blurred’ images that I call contours.


“Montenegrin Contour # 7 © Jan Oberg 2016. Click it.

Exhibition “Abstract Real” still on
Visitors tell me that my studio is more like a home than a cool, commercial gallery. You can watch photos and browse books as well as discuss art and global affairs with me. It’s by appointment only and then I am present to care for each visitor.

Non-figurative photography? Some words about it on Oberg PhotoGraphics Blog.
Have a sneak peek here of some of the works that are on show.

Always welcome – just call first! Perhaps one day you need a gift or want to give your own walls a new life.


Crosshatch Series 4-5 © Jan Oberg 2011. Click it

Next shoot
Positive notes to come on Tate Modern with Performing for the Camera and the fine “pairing” exhibits of, say, Monet+Richter and Rothko+Monet there. And about some shots I haphazardly did of objects at the Victoria and Albert Museum’s collections like this:


Jesus at Victoria & Albert Museum © Jan Oberg 2016

I’ll also return to some very interesting works at Tate Britain and other stuff there – except Tracy Emin’s The Bed!

Next Stop: Basel!
This week off to BaselArt Basel, the world’s largest (and most commercial?) contemporary art fair. See a brand new video here. But equally important all the other significant – less posh and more experimenting – events that takes place in amazing Basel such as SCOPE and Photo Basel (2nd year only). Will write about and upload to Instagram, @obergphotographics. 

Remember
– that it’s the arts more than anything that keep us human…

My best
Jan Oberg

“Painting With Light” at Tate Britain

The whole long title of this exhibition is “Painting With Light – Art and Photography from the Pre-Raphaelites to the Modern Age”. Since I believe that photography is an art – like painting or sculpture or graphic prints – the title may feel somehow a little misguided.

On the famous other hand, the exhibition covers a period of art history during which photography wasn’t broadly considered an art form.

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As a matter of fact the aim is to show the visitor how closely the two have been in certain circles and how they interacted with each other through individual pioneers and small innovative milieus in both fields.

The show counts 90 pairings of paintings and photographs with striking similarities – never before displayed together.

It’s a very very fine educational exhibition that I warmly recommend. Unfortunately, you are not allowed to take pictures there so I can’t show you my impressions. Funnily, however, lots of the works are on Google images

But check things out on the above link as well as Tate’s in-depth info – here with direct comparisons.

Here is a very informative pre-exhibition article in Aesthetica. And here is a, rather critical review in The Telegraph arguing that this exhibition is more like a dry academic textbook than a lively exhibition.

I can’t judge; I just found all the juxtapositions of paintings and photography over 75 years very illuminating of a theme that has only become more and more important ever since and shows how art creators inspire and build on each other across media they choose.

Closes on September 25, 2016.

 

The Photographers’ Gallery and Deutsche Börse Prize

The Photographers’ Gallery in London – a few minutes from Oxford Circus – is a must for the photo enthusiast. It’s the type of institution any city should have in some shape or form as part of its cultural policy. The Photographers’ Gallery could serve as a model or inspiration, I believe, to anyone.

This is how the history of the place is presented on its homepage:

The Photographers’ Gallery was founded in 1971 by Sue Davies OBE in a converted Lyon’s Tea Bar at No. 8 Great Newport Street in London’s Covent Garden.

Free to the public, it was the first gallery in the world to be devoted solely to photography. The aim, born from Davies’ own passion for photography, and frustration that it was denied the consideration and exhibition platform of other visual arts, was to provide a proper home for photographers and their work, as well as establish the medium as a serious art form. Through an illuminating and influential programme of exhibitions, talks and educational activities, the Gallery elevated photography as an artistic and cultural leader whilst promoting its vital role as a social and historical document.

1971…the first gallery in the world devoted solely! Oh, how late in the history of art – and Oh, how fast things have changed!

Here is everything you may want to know before visiting this place which has changing exhibitions, library and education, print and book sales, online bookstore, lecture and meeting facilities, cafeteria and more – and still it is not big. You can see everything in an hour or two.

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The main show when I visited was of the four shortlisted candidates for the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize 2016: Laura El-Tantawy, Erik Kessels, Tobias Zielony and Trevor Paglen.

It was announced on June 10 that Paglen was the winner. Continue reading

“FIX Photo” at OXO Tower Wharf in London

“Walk over the Waterloo Bridge, past Somerset House – where Photo London is in May – then turn left and walk a few hundred meters on the Riverside Walkway and you’ll come to Bargehouse, OXO Tower Wharf:

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FIX Photo is produced and curated by Laura Noble of LANG and if you come from Photo London across the Thames, you’ll find it as different from that as this facade is from Somerset House.

The building itself is a piece of art; here a few impressions of the interior.

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Cafeteria on top 4th floor

 

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Wall with walking man

 

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Floor with light coming through window

And when you hang art photos in such an milieu something happens that can not possibly happen in the posh and often sterile gallery.

Here a wonderful work by Mischa Haller, “Barbie Bike”, Continue reading

Shoot # 52

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Lund, May 29, 2016
Click on the pictures to enlarge and get all info and prices of various editions.

Dear Art Photo Friend,

Welcome to shoot # 52

The above photo was shot at the reception of the Photo London fair. It’s a digital gift to you from Oberg PhotoGraphics – a moment of contemplation and beauty with which I wish you a good Sunday and ‘weekbegin’.

A special welcome to many new subscribers, visitors and friends on social media – not the least those participating in Photo London. Here is the preceding shoot that you didn’t get.

“Photo London” & more London
I’m just back from this very exciting international art photo event at Somerset House – 84 leading photo galleries exhibiting their best, all kinds, media, styles, techniques from vintage to today’s experimental and even camera-less photography.

I’ve written an art recommendation – I’m not an art criticPhoto London: Positive Notes with quite a few of my images from the fair and short texts about what fascinated me. Networking, sharing and creating positive energy is what I believe in.

Further, I made some out-of-focus shots from the venue – just images of details, people, Somerset House, mirrors, etc. For those who were there and for those who wish they had been able to go.

London is the world capital of photography in May at least. So I also went to Photographers’ Gallery with Deutsche Börse prize shortlisted artists, Tate Modern with Performing for the Camera, Tate Britain’s Painting With Light and the OXO Fix Photo 
Positive notes to come!

Montenegro
Recently hiked in Montenegro’s wild nature with its majestic mountains and magic lakes. Here a few shots – nature photography as well as Gerhard Richter-inspired ‘blurred’ images that I call contours.

This shoot newsletter
– leads you to the online GlobalArt magazine that I curate. Click and inspiration is guaranteed. It’s sharing of art for cultural bridgebuilding and civilisation – the opposite of war and bombing. And it’s news about a photo and other art blog.


“Montenegrin Contour # 8 © Jan Oberg 2016. Click it.

Exhibition “Abstract Real” on into June
Visitors tell me that my studio is more like a home than a cool, commercial gallery. You can watch photos and browse books as well as discuss art and global affairs with me. It’s by appointment only – but anytime. And I am present to care for each visitor.


Abstract Ceiling © Jan Oberg 2016. Click it

Non-figurative photography? Some words about it on my blogHave a sneak peek here of some of the works that are on show. You are always welcome – just call first!

Perhaps one day you need a gift or want to give your own walls a new life.

Remember
– that it’s the arts more than anything else that keep us human…

My best
Jan Oberg