Thursday, July 24, 2014

Bianca Review- 03- Laia Abril

While researching artists for my curatorial debut, I discovered Laia Abril. She is a Spanish artist that grew up in Barcelona and her work is mainly documentary. The project I am working on is shedding a light into what strangers find they don’t like and like about themselves physically. A contemporary idea: Body Image, everyone faces them these days whether through bullying or in the comparison of oneself with the media. Laia Abril took the idea of re-introducing the viewer to Anorexia in a new way, through the eyes of its fans.
            This is a close and personal subject to me, after having met a girl who suffered from Anorexia. This girl had the hardest time being normal because this disease overcame her body and mind. These “Pro-Ana” websites are also real, and very terrifying because people encourage others to continue with the sickness that ravages them. Laia Abril retakes self-portraits from the screen she views them off of.

            The images are of girls squeezing in their stomachs, measuring their wrists and arms, standing up or lying down. The images are haunting and ghostly because the subject looks as if they could just disappear anyway. All of these women are dressed in hardly anything and seem to be almost proud in their disfigurement of their bodies. The idea that their bodies are not thin enough, or not perfect enough goes racing through their minds. And even though the images are only of women, men also experience this disease though it is not as popular in the media.

Bianca Review- 02- Amy Theiss Giese

I couldn’t contain my excitement when I found this artist experimenting with paper, chemistry and light.  The idea of using the basic materials of a photograph in a dark room to create a photograph without even taking a photo is exciting.  It’s a contemporary way of using most people no longer even think of because of the new digital age.

Amy Theiss Giese uses no camera to create her bodies of work but instead the fundamentals of a darkroom: light sensitive paper, chemicals, and light. In essence she is taking photographs of the shadows in the darkroom that are briefly seen when you turn on the enlarger to capture the negative from a film onto paper. As we know light also has different spectrums of colors which are naked to the eye. These create the different tints of color onto the paper. These pieces of art create window to a parallel world we cannot see until now.

 Her body of work also makes the equipment in the darkroom the most important aspect of the process. Though the images from “Concealed at first at last I appear” are not her first experiments in Photography, they are by far the most interesting in my opinion. The genius that is to not necessarily photograph the shadows of the dark but more to capture the essence that is a shadow. It makes those eerie figures you may have once been afraid of as children come to life. Her images also have a creepy effect to them as well giving the viewer a sense of slight fear while viewing them.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014


 "We  create works in response to the ever-bleakening relationship linking humans, technology, and nature." Would viewers be able to pick up on this element without knowing this? I believe so. Not necessarily to the exact idea as that, but there is a certain element to their photos and subject matter that one picks up when seeing their works. They have several different collections to look through but there is a constant element maintaing throughout, whether it be the message or their unique "style."

"Their newest series, Gautier’s Dream, marks a return to b&w imagery that reveals their love of opera, dance and cinema. Inspired by French artist, writer and critic, Théophile Gautier, these new works explore dramas that unfold in front of an audience and behind the velvet curtain. Their Everyman, once obsessed with saving the earth, now breathes in the earth, his face inhabited by sunflowers and daffodils (The Lover); becomes a collector of moths/butterflies by listening to them (Thief of Paris); and turns into a willing puppet, dressed in a top hat, awaiting his grand entrance (Apparition of Mallarmé)."

With a new approach to photography this semester and attempting to freshen things up and practice techniques and ideas I am not familiar with/explored, looking at their work, I can appreciate more their attention to detail and the scene they are setting up. I remember seeing them at the Artist Talk at Trinity 4University earlier in the year and their use of surreal colors and overall "look" of their photographs were amazing. Some have simple subject matter at first glance, but after you stop to look at it you are pulled in by their ingenuity in the subject matter and the method they present it in. Their works have an "aged" feel to them in most of their collections, but more so in their "Architect's Brother" series.

In the piece "The Source" a man is seen coming out of the ground/standing in a hole with his back turned towards the viewer and on his head is what appears to be a bush/tree of some sort. Not in a pot but instead just free formed with the roots falling every which way off his head and in his hands he is holding a glass of water-pouring onto his head and roots. 

I was going to address another photo in another collection of theirs pertaining to trees coming out of the subjects forearms but came across "Wound" in their Gray Dawn series. Extremely compelling- the photograph is that of a tree limb stretching across the piece and in the middle is a bandage around the tree. It looks as if the tree itself has been hurt and is bleeding from the wound into a glass that has been tied to the branch to collect the blood. Their delivery of the photo in the means of their editing the photo/developing the piece is so successful in making the content a lot stronger than if say it were to be printed onto a clean glossy white piece of paper 

Monday, July 21, 2014


After having presented my concept of ideas I would be working on this semester and my one on one meeting with Libby, she recommended I researched this artist. The home page of his website is neat in appearance and to the point. For example, you type in his URL to his website and there on a somewhat off colored squares with three lines of text: his name followed by two hyperlinks directing you towards the photographs and collections and the other directing you to information of the artist.

After having done some research and perused through his work I came to really enjoy his "Homes at Night" collection. His use of lighting and the natural lighting makes the scenes almost look like that of fantasy. Looking throughout his compositions and observing the lighting on the streets and how well each section is lit and the ambient light compliments the light coming from the persons windows.

My favorite photo of the collection would be "2479a." The mixture of the lighting is not only interesting but engaging as well. For example, part of the photo has a harsh white light coming in from off scene but blends in with a softer more brownish orange/red light coming in from the right of the photograph. Moving the viewers eyes throughout the composition, the windows serve as another visual area to draw your eyes to. Some of the windows are filled with a harsher yellow light, more distinct, while the other windows are filled with that softer red light. Theres a mixture of similar colors that are spread throughout the photograph that make it engaging for the viewer and pleasant to look at. After looking at the foreground and subject matter (the house and windows) one moves their attention toward the sky which is just as equally interesting as the foreground. There is the same variation of colors and battle for attention that the colors are trying to achieve. Overall his photographs and skills are something to aspire to. His use of lighting and control over the ambient light as to not make or break the photograph if I may, but Todd Hido uses it in such a manner that elevates the composition and photography to another level

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Bianca Review- 01- Ying Ang

I want to expand my knowledge of photography used in a contemporary setting this semester. I was confused as to what I could create my body of work on this semester so I wrote out four solid ideas in which I could follow. The idea of a beauty shot always fascinated me but by taking macro shots of what people liked and disliked about themselves, brought the idea into a more contemporary setting.

 While looking for artists whose works interest me, I stumbled upon Ying Ang. Her works mainly consist of social and contemporary issues. Ying Ang's interests lie in creating something you can read and hold onto whether it’s for print, on the web, or an installation. She is based in Melbourne, Singapore, and New York so many of her bodies of work have to do with the cultures of the area.

In her newest book, Gold Coast Book, she captures the dark unseen side of the Australian Coast. In her series, there are portraits of the young and corrupted. She also photographs settings in which the tales of rape, drugs, murder and extortions are based upon. Her photographs are inspiring and pleasing to the eye, which give you a glimpse into another world that most Americans consider paradise. When I see her artwork I am inspired to look at the lives around me in a new perspective: the real truth behind the people, or at least pretend like I can see another perspective of the lives around me.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Hey Summer 2014 Students!  
I had to change the access to this account.  Please check the blackboard notes for the new password.  
Remember, when you are posting your blog entries...don't create a new blog...just use the little pencil to add a new post.  That will put all the post in the main blog page.  

Thursday, July 10, 2014


This semester I want to explore areas that are dear to me in the sense that remind me of home. Coming from a small town I was able to have the luxury of small town living and being out in the country while I could also travel 30-40 minutes to catch a glimpse of the busy bustle of city life. Growing up I began showing interest in sunset and sunrise lighting and landscape photography.

Liam Frankland's approach to photography and landscape photography is different than most. As you come up in the photography world, people tell you that grain in photographs and high ISOs are bad. Frankland has utilized them and incorporated them into his work. Several albums on his website are made up of abstract landscapes broken up by the different colors making up the sky (beach landscapes) and also the use of high ISOs and artistically using the grain.

A lot of people may see a landscape and photograph as how it is, but it is refreshing to see how Liam Frankland makes some of his photographs almost resemble a fresco painting. His compositions also vary from one photograph to the next. Some apply the 1/3 rule and have the sky be the dominant scale in the photograph and other photos the foreground overpowers the sky. When viewing these photos, I would like to try and attempt to emulate his style and successfully. The process and the actual photographing of the locations seem tranquil and meditative in a way. As if everything else is not relevant, just an artist and his tools of his trade.