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'Føroyar' by Kevin Faingnaert – a reportage about life on the Faroe Islands, with impressive landscape photos and in-depth portraits. Winner of the Zeiss Photography Award 2017

With imposing landscapes and strong portraits, Kevin Faingnaert vividly brings the Faroe Islands and their inhabitants closer to us. The mutiple award-winning Belgian portrait and reportage photographer documented everyday life of the village community on the sparsely populated and barren islands between Scotland and Iceland over the period of a few weeks for the 'Føroyar'. With his photo series, he came up on top of more than 4600 photographers from 130 countries at the Zeiss Photography Awards, which was themed upon "Important Places" this year and took place in London at the end of April.

“Whoever takes a look at the merciless, wild surroundings understands that these are ordinary people who live under extraordinary circumstances, surviving at the end of the world,” says jury member Claire Richardson, photo editor at Lonely Planet.

“Føroyar is a series about life in remote and sparsely populated villages on the Faroe Islands, an archipelago in the middle of the North Atlantic, halfway between Scotland and Iceland. In February 2016, I immersed myself within the Faroese community, I couch-surfed and hitch-hiked my way across the islands, finding doors opening to me everywhere I went. Here, across swathes of snow-veiled landscapes and bordered by dramatic coastline, villages are slowly dropping into decline as more and more of their inhabitants are emigrating from the islands in pursuit of greater opportunities. Though at times lonely and perpetually freezing, I learned to appreciate the small, simple comforts of life listening to stories told in the welcoming warmth of Faroese homes, the sound of songs against the roaring backdrop of the sea, and my memorable encounter with a message-in-a-bottle collector on the beach. In these clear and pristine landscapes, where villages with populations as low as ten huddle together on the edge of cliffs, I tried to reveal a community hanging on firmly to their roots and traditions, while underlining that one day these villages must inevitably disappear.” Background info is given by the Begian photographer in the interview Feautureshoot, and further reportages by Kevin Faingnaert are available on his website.
24.05.2017 // show complete article

GoSee Tip : NAMSA LEUBA draws with 'Ya Kala Ben' and 'The Kingdom of Mountains' a refreshing picture of African culture

Swiss-African photographer Namsa Leuba, who was born in 1982 and studied at the ECAL (Cantonal Univdersity for Art and Design) in Lausanne, deals in her work with African identity as seen through Western eyes. In 2010, she was awarded the Jury Prize of the Photography Festival Planche(s) Contact of Deauville (CH) chaired by Bettina Rheims, at the fashion and photography festival in Hyères, she received the Photo Global award in 2012. resently, her two series “Ya Kala Ben” (2011) and “The Kingdom of Mountains” (2014) are on display at the Parisian In Camera Gallery. We have an insight here on GoSee, and further inspiring works are available on her website.

"In this series Namsa produces what she calls an “intervention” on the models and on their typical clothes. She tried to change the classic perception of the West for the African culture. The persistent fascination for African cosmogony emerges in this series through the construction and deconstruction of the human body that is set up in unidentifiable locations and with different kinds of objects. Namsa recreates and assembles shapes, colors, objects and anachronistic clothes, obtaining a visual construction that may not have a lucid order. The space is transformed through the camera and by Namsa’s imagination."

Namsa Leuba’s diverse photographic practice examines the representation of African identity through the Western imagination. Spanning documentary, fashion and performance, Namsa Leuba creates a visual imagery that explores the signs and symbols of her cultural heritage, from rituals and ceremonies to statuettes and masquerades. Whether executed on location in the artist’s ancestral hometown of Guinea or in the constructed studio environment, Leuba’s projects combine an anthropological interest in traditional customs with an aesthetic that is informed by fashion and design sensibilities. Adopting a theatrical approach with careful attention to props, colors and gestures, Namsa Leuba questions the relationship between fact and fiction, action and representation, and the sacred and the profane.

Namsa Leuba (Switzerland, b. 1982) studied photography at ECAL, University of Art and Design Lausanne, and obtained a Masters in Art Direction at ECAL. Her work has been published in numerous magazines, including I-D, Numéro, KALEIDOSCOPE, Foam, Interview, Vice Magazine, New York Magazine, Wallpaper, Libération, British Journal of Photography, and European Photography. In 2010, Leuba won First Prize at the Planches Contact Festival in Deauville, France. In 2012, Leuba was awarded the PhotoGlobal Prize at the Photography Festival in Hyères. She was the winner of the Magenta Foundation Flash Forward Festival in 2013. Namsa Leuba has participated in recent exhibitions including Photoquai in Paris, France; Making Africa: A Continent of Contemporary Design at the Guggenheim Bilbao, Spain; Nataal: New African Photography at Redhook Labs, Brooklyn; Africa Reframed in Copenhagen, Denmark; Daegu Photo Biennale in Daegu, Korea; the Athens Photo Festival in Athens, Greece, and a performance in Off Print at the Tate Modern, London. Her work is included in prestigious private collections including the Swiss Foundation for Photography and the Tang Museum (New York). Leuba’s first large scale solo exhibition, Ethnomodern, was held at Art Twenty One in Lagos in 2016. Leuba lives and works between Africa and Europe.

NAMSA LEUBA, IN CAMERA, 21 rue Las Cases, 75007 Paris, www.incamera.fr
24.05.2017 // show complete article

'Western and Eastern Light' by magnum photographer Harry Gruyaert in New York's Michael Hoppen Gallery, on from 09 May thru 27 June, 2017

‘Western and Eastern Light’ is the first exhibition by Belgian photographer Harry Gruyaert in New York's Michael Hoppen Gallery. Harry Gruyaert in his capacity as magnum photographer traveled across Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, and America over the past 30 years with his camera – often simply on the streets with his VW station wagon.

“He was one of the first European photographers to take advantage of the creative potential of color photography, following in the footsteps of great American colorists such as William Eggleston and Stephen Shore.” says the Michael Hoppen Gallery on Harry Gruyaert and continues: “Heavily influenced by the emergence of the pop art movement in New York, Gruyaert has been a pioneer in the use of color as a means of expression in photography. His filmic, jewel-hued scenes have become something of a trademark, at times suspended in a flurry of movement and, at others, thick with suspense. His dense compositions weave together a fabric of elements; texture, light, color and architecture to create tableaux.” The exhibition shows you an overview of Harry's broadly spanned photo cosmos, from the landscapes of Morocco to the streets of Moscow “and in doing so highlights the artist’s ability to photograph the subtle chromatic vibrations of Western and Eastern Light.” we gladly quote from the press release.
11.05.2017 // show complete article