Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Multivocal Histories curated by Bas Vroege

Images from 'Steel Works', first exhibited and published in 1990 are being featured in the Noorderlicht Photofestival in Gröningen, Holland, this month.

It features photographs by Tommy Harris, a selection of family snapshots collected by Julian Germain and some of Germain's colour photographs, framed in welded steel with engraved texts.

When Julian Germain published his book ‘Steel Works’ in 1990, he unintentionally laid the foundations for a new current in documentary photography. Germain combined his own work with that of a local news photographer, family snapshots and a reportage from the Sunday Times Magazine. In doing so, he exposed the social clear-cutting of Thatcherism. Bas Vroege, director of Paradox and lecturer at the Master's in Photographic Studies (University Leiden), gathered more examples of this sort of 'post-modern visual history writing'.

In her long-running project 'ReFraming History', Magnum photographer Susan Meiselas explores the impact of time and politics on the people of Nicaragua. The young Czech curator/photographer Ales Vasicek collaborated with Vojta Dukát, the legendary photographer/filmmaker of Moravian descent, who recorded the departure of the Russian troops on video in 1991. Vasicek supplemented Dukát's images with documents and photographs that provide background to the main location, the camp/town of Milovice. But he also shows the pictures he had taken in 2008, unaware of Dukat's work there, while working as a walk-on for a film production shot there, dealing with the fall of Srebrenica.

In all these long-term projects the photographer, who works in an increasingly independent manner, is an artist, editor, curator and researcher, all rolled into one. It is 'slow journalism' at its best.

Taco Hidde Bakker (NL)
Wouter den Bakker (NL)
Vojta Dukát (CZ/NL)
Julian Germain (GB)
Stephen Bell/Stanley Greene (GB/US)
Tim Hetherington (US)
Jian Jiang (CN)
Anastasia Khoroshilova (DE)
Susan Meiselas (US)
Florian Schwarz (DE)
Andrea Stultiens (NL)
Ales Vasicek (CZ)

Curated by Bas Vroege

Noorderlicht Photofestival takes place between 6 sep 4 oct 2009


Installation Photo above by Valentijn Brandt