Mitch Epstein – Amos Coal Power Plant, Raymond City, West Virginia, 2004
Photographer Mitch Epstein has taken part of his time to bring light into the social and moral fabric of the United States. One of the works that has earned him a lot of praise is his American Power project.
In American Power Mitch travels through America to bring images of how America is being powered. He was inspired by the evacuation of an environmentally contaminated town in Ohio between 2003 and 2008 which messed up lives of the former inhabitants of the city.
Qiu Zhijie – Tattoo 2, 1994
Qiu Zhijie is well known for his capacity to add provoking new meanings to traditional Chinese calligraphy. In many of his works, Qiu incorporates calligraphy into modern media as a way of fusing important elements from his culture into his art. His Tattoo series that was released in 1994 explores the state of one’s independence and invisibility.
Andreas Gursky – Kuwait Stock Exchange II, 2007
Photo: Andreas Gursky/VG Bild-Kunst, Courtesy Sprüth Magers, Berlin London
Andreas Gursky is a German photographer and professor. He is most well known for large format architecture and landscape color photos, and following the 1990’s; Gursky has been using technology and computers for editing and enhancing his photos.
Gursky is known for using an elevated vantage point as his main perspective. This allows the audience to view the scenes from a place that is both peripheral and central. Using each subject to create an unconventional geometry, he organizes the world fitting in with his personal visual logic. He began his portrayals of stock exchanges in 1990 and has continued this project throughout his career.
Alan Delorme – Totem #4
French artist Alan Delorme’s Totem series features images of towering stacks of objects that appear to teeter perilously like totem poles. His project name is ambiguous because it almost indicates that the project is about the dazzling heights of the Shanghai skyscrapers. owever, the entire project focuses on migrants attempting and struggling to ferry their towering wares and cargo across various parts of the megacity.
The migrants in the pictures that often go unnoticed by many are seen to transport unbelievable piles of goods on their bikes. Delorme utilized the precarious products that consist of cardboards, chairs, bales of clothes, and tires just to mention a few, to represent the new totems of society.
Abbas Kowsari – Police Women Academy, 2006
In 2003 the first females ever graduated from Iran’s police academy in the capital city Tehran, after undergoing a training of three years. Spiritual leader Ayatollah Khamenei himself had to give permission to Tehran’s police chief Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf to create the first all-female police unit.
Photographer Abbas Kowsari does not shy away from controversial topics. He has worked for over ten Iranian leading newspapers, most of them now banned from publishing. He was granted permission to take photos of the graduation ceremony, which turned out to be quite unusual. “During Qalibaf’s time as police chief,” Kowsari said, “policewomen performed many martial arts and chase routines, including climbing walls and jumping out of the windows of moving cars. But after he stepped down, that training was eliminated. Last year’s ceremony was limited to a parade, speeches, target practice, and the loading of revolvers by blindfolded policewomen graduates. No photographers were allowed.”
Abbas Kowsari currently works as the senior photo editor for Shargh newspaper in Tehran and his photos have been published in The New York Times, Time magazine, Der Spiegel and others.
Abbas Kowsari – Police Women Academy, 2007
Abbas Kowsari – Police Women Academy
Abbas Kowsari – Police Women Academy
Abbas Kowsari – Dragnet Tehran, 2003
Abbas Kowsari – Police Women Academy, 2006
Abbas Kowsari – Police Women Academy– 2/7, 2006
Thomas Struth – Pantheon, Rome, 1990
Thomas Struth is one of the most critically acclaimed contemporary photographers of our time. He is renowned for his black and white photographs of cities such as Düsseldorf and New York, as well as his family portraits. The artist who lives in Dusseldorf acquired his inspiration for his series of Museum Photographs while he was residing in Naples and Rome, where he discovered that there was a connection between paintings of art and religion and how these paintings connect audiences to their spirituality. The Museum Photographs, which was showcased at the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, marshaled in a new visual language in the field of photography.
In his series, Struth photographed the art and the visitors viewing it, as well as the viewer observing other audiences. As such, with the many layers of observation, Struth’s intention was to assess the museum’s control of their audience and the criteria that each museum has for exhibiting pieces in the way that it does. The purpose behind the Museum Photographs was to remind people that the iconic subjects of his photographs were once just unfamiliar paintings done by ordinary individuals.
For instance, his Galleria dell’Accademia I, Venice piece shows regular tourists in shorts and casual clothing as they wander around an exhibition hall that is dominated by Paolo Veronese’s 1573 painting The Feast in the House of Levi. Struth’s color print is as large as Veronese’s painting, yet the scene in his photograph is reminiscent of memories of an outing on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon. He specifically selected Veronese’s interpretation of the Feast in the House of Levi as a subject because it had a feel of a regular dinner or lunch and it depicted a rather large party atmosphere where people have gathered to drink and make merry. As a result, his photograph of the feast allows today’s audiences to look upon the masterpiece with a new energy and perspective, just like the first time it was put on public display.
For the project, Struth utilized a European 13×18 camera, and he positioned himself strategically so that every photograph he took, whether inside a museum or in the crowded streets of Paris and Vienna, rendered onlookers in random areas, which gives his pictures more power.
In the end, he managed to create a dialogue between photography and paintings, where his choice of paintings echoes his earlier black and white work in Düsseldorf. He effectively manages to bridge the gap between space and time, where the figures in the painting and the figures observing the paintings are connected despite how much time has passed since the paintings were first made public or the space that exists between them.
Thomas Struth – Pergamon Museum I, Berlin, 2001
Thomas Struth – Pergamon Museum II, Berlin, 2001
Thomas Struth – Pergamon Museum III, Berlin, 2001
Thomas Struth – Pergamon Museum VI, Berlin, 2001
Thomas Struth – Stanze di Raffaello 2, Rome, 1990
Thomas Struth – Art Institute of Chicago I, Chicago, 1990
Thomas Struth – Art Institute of Chicago II, Chicago, 1990
Thomas Struth – Galleria dell'Accademia I, Venice, 1992
Thomas Struth – Kunsthistorisches Museum III Wien, 1989
Thomas Struth – Louvre 1, Paris, 1989
Thomas Struth – Louvre 4, Paris, 1989
Thomas Struth – Pergamon Museum IV, Berlin, 2001
Thomas Struth – National Gallery I, London, 1989
Thomas Struth – National Gallery II, London, 2001
Thomas Struth – Alte Pinakothek, Self Portrait, Munich, 2000
Best known as the photographer with a fascination with distorted human figures, Danish photographer, Asger Carlsen was born in 1973. He began flirting with the idea of being a commercial photographer as early as the age of 16 when he took a photograph of a police officer who was yelling at him and his friends, which he would later sell to a local newspaper. He took to crime-scene photography soon after and this would propel him to commercial photography working for various magazines. The creation of photographic distortions was born in 2006 when he was playing with images on his computer; he laid several human faces on top of each other and the end result was an odd looking face which had multiple pairs of eyes. Naturally, this surprised him and having come at a time when he was trying to make his name as a commercial photographer, he was afraid of what has been created, so he chose to hide it.
Now, many years later, Asger Carlsen is a well-known photographer, thanks to his ability to digitally manipulate images he has photographed. While his works are unique, the images he creates are odd, confusing and shocking. If you can imagine a human being with no face, or with countless pairs of eyes or with an unusual alignment of body parts, then you can imagine the works of Asger Carlsen.
Owing to his awkward art, Asger Carlsen has been featured in various high level publications such as the New Yorker and Huffington Post. His work has been displayed in galleries and museums internationally. Perhaps the most outstanding influence of his work is its power to present humanity in a humorous and eerie manner every time and to give the viewer a sense of familiarity and mystery at the same time. To someone who is looking for a thrilling photographic viewing, Asger Carlsen’s different styles of photos make for an interesting story. While he tries to be unique in this new concept of photography, he remains loyal to brand photography through use of high quality flash and image contrast imaging.