Monthly Archives: December 2011

Short video with some recent works

Via this blog, Linkedin, Facebook and a mail service, I try to reach various categories of art lovers – photo art lovers in particular –  who cannot visit my gallery in Lund, Sweden.

It’s one of the joys of technological innovation that I have written about earlier on this blog – that we can now reach people across the globe and overcome travel costs and geographical distances. With this 50-second video I try to reach out in a personal way. 

This said, the qualities of the personal meeting and the direct contact with art works can never be substituted by technology. So, I hope you will anyhow come to my gallery one day.



A reflection on art, power and politics

I feel more hopeful about the future with Mozart than with Merkel. I get more happy with Satie than with Sarkozy. Bob Dylan’s poetry seems to me to have more lasting value than Obama’s rhetoric. Indeed, I wonder whether all museums and galleries in the world will not still stand when Pentagon has become irrelevant and converted into the UN World Culture Centre. And I get the sense that Robert Rauschenberg was more creative in his field than my prime minister is in his.


Natalia # 20 (In front of Gerhard Richter)
© Jan Oberg 2011
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The advantages of the new photo-related technologies

To follow-up the preceding blog post: What are the comparative advantages of all this? Aren’t we just obsessed with newness and becoming techno freaks hunting down the latest versions of some manipulative tool? Yes, that is a risk – but!

You are still the one to decide what kind of image you want to produce and why. You are still choosing how much you are prepared to let technology rule you, or you rule technology. You can still decide that this particular picture should not be touched but printed rightaway as raw as it’s been shot.

Here are some reasons why I like these recent tecnologies and their potentials:

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Technological innovations changes image-making

A series of rather recent technical developments permit photography to go in new directions. I think we should welcome them and explore them – but without letting technology or perfection take over. Photography will always be a matter of shooting the right motive at the right place at the right time – and what that means will never be defined once and for all – and a lousy picture won’t become great just because you put it through Photoshop.

Look at the photo below of a pair of pears. Under them is a plate with some coffee beans with a napkin on top and then those two beautiful shapes, almost making a couple, signifying autumn and juicy delight. I did it in no time in a private kitchen between carrying things out and in and it was only a raw picture, and I tell you it all looked very commonplace, trivial…outright boring; exactly as something just put there in a hurry in a kitchen – although I took advantage of the structure of the beans to let them stand up on their ends rather than lying on the napkin. But that is all I did.

The result you see is all thanks to technology, an iPhone with some “app” used in a late evening in a kitchen corner with too little light and then worked on just a little in Photoshop. It could have appeared in literally thousands of other ways; this is just one example.


This article offers some of my thoughts on this, not the least stimulated by people coming to my gallery and often questioning the use of “all these new things” and “why can’t a picture just be a good picture anymore”? They are very legitimate and I respect those who stick the their last day with good old films (as long as you can buy them) and lock themselves up in a darkroom. Fine – but I don’t.

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