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James Peaslee
James Peaslee
James Peaslee

James Peaslee

Country: United States
Birth: 1952

James M. Peaslee (Jim) is an art photographer living in New York City. He grew up in New York City and its suburbs, Los Angeles, and France. He has been taking pictures for 50 years. His formal photography education started at age 17 in 1970, in a course taken in the Yale Art Department from the venerable Walker Evans. Peaslee has a substantial portfolio of black and white pictures (taken with a medium format camera) from that time. The need to earn a living then put a temporary damper on artistic endeavors. He went to law school, and was a tax lawyer for many years with the international law firm Cleary Gottlieb. Good tax lawyers are known for their creativity, but admittedly the artistry is light on color, tones, and shapes. In 2018, Peaslee retired from the law and attended the Rocky Mountain School of Photography Summer Intensive Program. Much of his time since the beginning of 2018 has been devoted to photography, and his portfolio is growing.

Statement
Peaslee admits to having a dark side. Many of the pictures he takes are stark or consciously simplified. A picture that is stark or simple offers the viewer a chance to ask what is missing, or what happens next. Many images show individuals who seem isolated. Pictures of buildings usually show no people, or only figures in silhouette or shadow. One artist Peaslee cites as an influence is Edward Hopper. Walker Evans, his first photography teacher, also helped set the tone.
 

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Melvin Sokolsky
United States
1933
Melvin Sokolsky is an American photographer and film director. Born in New York City in 1933, Sokolsky was raised on the Lower East Side. He had no formal training in photography, but started to use his father's box camera at about the age of ten. Always analytical, he started to realize the role that emulsion played as he compared his own photographs with those his father had kept in albums through the years. "I could never make my photographs of Butch the dog look like the pearly finish of my father's prints, and it was then that I realized the importance of the emulsion of the day." Around 1954, Sokolsky met Robert Denning, who at the time worked with photographer Edgar de Evia, at an East Side gym. "I discovered that Edgar was paid $4000 for a Jell-O ad, and the idea of escaping from my tenement dwelling became an incredible dream and inspiration." Whether floating models down the Seine in a bubble, or shrinking his subjects, Alice-like, to miniature heights, Melvin Sokolsky helped to pioneer illusory fashion photography long before the age of digital enhancement took hold. Though he is best known for his editorial fashion photographs for publications such as Harper's Bazaar (for which he produced, in 1963, the Bubble series of photographs depicting fashion models “floating” in giant clear plastic bubbles suspended in midair above the River Seine in Paris), Vogue, and The New York Times, Sokolsky’s work is not limited to that field. Three quarters of his print photography has been for advertising, which does not usually carry a byline. As Sokolsky said in an interview: “I resented the attitude that ‘This is editorial and this is advertising. I always felt, why dilute it? Why not always go for the full shot?” Toward the end of the 1960s, Sokolsky worked as both commercial director and cameraman. He did not, however, abandon the world of print photography; in 1972 he was asked to photograph the entire editorial content of McCall's Magazine, a first for any photographer.Source: Wikipedia Melvin Sokolsky was born and raised in New York City where he started his distinguished career as a stills photographer. At the age of twenty-one he was invited to join the staff of Harper's Bazaar. Within the next few years he worked as a major contributor to four prestigious magazines: Esquire, McCall's, Newsweek, and Show. His photographs of internationally famous personalities have appeared in many of the major museums and magazines worldwide. In 1962, Sokolsky photographed the entire editorial content of McCall's Magazine, a first in its time. He is best known of his infusion of surrealism in his fashion photography, with his iconic series of women encased in plastic bubbles, floating around various cityscapes. In 1964, Sokolsky was invited by the School of Visual Arts in New York to teach a special class at his studio in New York. In 1969, Sokolsky embarked on a new career in television commercials as director/cameraman. Sokolsky has been honored with twenty-five Clio Awards, and is the recipient of every major television commercial award including the coveted "Directors Guild" nomination. Many of Sokolsky's commercials are in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. In 1972, Sokolsky versed in all phases of special effects and cinematography, presented a computerized zoom lens that he designed to the Academy of Arts and Sciences. The system was subsequently nominated for an Academy Award. 1975, Sokolsky was invited by the Japanese Graphic Society to lecture in Tokyo and Kyoto, and was subsequently named Honorary Professor of Photography. In 1986, the Victoria and Albert Museum installed an exhibition of photographs called Shots of Style, a retrospective of the worlds major fashion photographers. The Victoria & Albert included Sokolsky's photographs in the exhibit, and subsequently placed many of them in their permanent collection. In 1991, the Victoria and Albert Museum mounted a show called Appearances, that is slated to travel around the world. Source: www.sokolsky.com
Marsha Guggenheim
United States
1948
Marsha Guggenheim is a fine art photographer based in San Francisco. Storytelling is a guiding influence in her work. Marsha is deeply interested in photographing people and uses her diverse city to capture their stories. A street photographer for many years, her comfort and ease while shooting on the street has provided numerous opportunities for closer connections within her community. Complementing her street photography, Marsha spent years working as a photographer with formerly homeless women. This work resulted in the monograph, “Facing Forward,” which highlights these hard-working, proud women through portraits and stories of their life experiences. Without a Map is a personal project Marsha has developed over the past five years. Through the use of family photos, creating pictures from her memories and by turning the camera on herself, she has found the means to evoke, reinterpret and address unanswered questions that were buried long ago. About Without a Map "How does one move through life with the scars of the past? When I was ten, my mother died unexpectedly from a heart attack. I couldn’t understand where she went or when she would return. Just as I began to comprehend this loss, my father died. I was without support from my family and community. I was lost. Without a Map reimagines this time that’s deeply rooted in my memories. Visiting my childhood home, synagogue and family plot provided an entry into this personal retelling. Working with family photos, creating new images from my past and turning the camera on myself, I found the means to evoke, reinterpret and address unanswered questions born from early imprints that were buried long ago."
Alfred Eisenstaedt
Germany
1898 | † 1995
Alfred Eisenstaedt (December 6, 1898 – August 24, 1995) was a German-born American photographer and photojournalist. He is best known for his photograph of the V-J Day celebration and for his candid photographs, frequently made using a 35mm Leica camera. Eisenstaedt was born in Dirschau (Tczew) in West Prussia, Imperial Germany in 1898. His family moved to Berlin in 1906. Eisenstaedt was fascinated by photography from his youth and began taking pictures at age 14 when he was given his first camera, an Eastman Kodak Folding Camera with roll film. Eisenstaedt served in the German Army's artillery during World War I, and was wounded in 1918. While working as a belt and button salesman in the 1920s in Weimar Germany, Eisenstaedt began taking photographs as a freelancer for the Pacific and Atlantic Photos' Berlin office in 1928. The office was taken over by Associated Press in 1931. Eisenstaedt successfully became a full-time photographer in 1929. Four years later he photographed a meeting between Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini in Italy. Other notable, early pictures by Eisenstaedt include his depiction of a waiter at the ice rink of the Grand Hotel in St. Moritz in 1932 and Joseph Goebbels at the League of Nations in Geneva in 1933. Although initially friendly, Goebbels scowled for the photograph when he learned that Eisenstaedt was Jewish. Because of oppression in Hitler's Nazi Germany, Eisenstaedt emigrated to the United States in 1935 where he lived in Jackson Heights, Queens, New York, for the rest of his life. He worked as a staff photographer for Life magazine from 1936 to 1972. His photos of news events and celebrities, such as Dagmar, Sophia Loren and Ernest Hemingway, appeared on 90 Life covers. Eisenstaedt was awarded the National Medal of Arts in 1989 by President George Bush in a ceremony on the White House lawn. Eisenstaedt, known as "Eisie" to his close friends, enjoyed his annual August vacations on the island of Martha's Vineyard for 50 years. During these summers, he would conduct photographic experiments, working with different lenses, filters, and prisms in natural light. Eisenstaedt was fond of Martha's Vineyard's photogenic lighthouses, and was the focus of lighthouse fundraisers organized by Vineyard Environmental Research, Institute (VERI). Two years before his death, Eisenstaedt photographed President Bill Clinton with wife, Hillary, and daughter, Chelsea. The photograph session took place at the Granary Gallery in West Tisbury on Martha's Vineyard, and was documented by this photograph published in People magazine on September 13, 1993. Eisenstaedt died in his bed at midnight at his beloved Menemsha Inn cottage known as the "Pilot House" at age 96, in the company of his sister-in-law, Lucille Kaye (LuLu), and friend, William E. Marks. Source: Wikipedia Born in Dirschau (now Poland), Alfred Eisenstaedt studied at the University of Berlin and served in the German army during World War I. After the war, while employed as a button and belt salesman in Berlin, he taught himself photography and worked as a freelance photojournalist. In 1929, he received his first assignment that would launch his professional career--the Nobel Prize ceremony in Stockholm. From 1929 to 1935 he was a full-time photojournalist for the Pacific and Atlantic Picture Agency, later part of the Associated Press, and contributed to the Berliner Illustrierte Zeitung and other picture magazines in Berlin and Paris. In 1935, he came to the United States, where he freelanced for Harper's Bazaar, Vogue, Town and Country, and other publications. In 1936, Henry Luce hired him, along with Margaret Bourke-White, Peter Stackpole, and Thomas McAvoy as one of four staff photographers for the new LIFE magazine. Eisenstaedt remained at LIFE for the next 40 years and was active as a photojournalist into his eighties. In 1988, he was honored with ICP's Infinity Master of Photography Award. Eisenstaedt was among those Europeans who pioneered the use of the 35-millimeter camera in photojournalism as they brought their knowledge to American publications after World War I. He was also among the earliest devotees of available-light photography. Unlike many photojournalists in the postwar period, he was not associated with a particular kind of event or geographic area: he was a generalist. As such, he was a favorite among editors, not only for his quick eye, but also for his ability in making good photographs of any situation or event. His nonjudgmental but acutely perceptive eye and his facility with composition have made his photographs memorable documents of his era both historically and aesthetically. Source: ICP
Edmund Teske
United States
1911 | † 1996
Edmund Rudolph Teske (March 7, 1911 – November 22, 1996) was a 20th-century American photographer who combined a career of taking portraits of artists, musicians and entertainers with a prolific output of experimental photography. His use of techniques like: combined prints, montages and solarizations led to "often romantic and mysterious images". Although he exhibited extensively and was well known within artistic photography circles during his lifetime, his work was not widely known by the public. He has been called "one of the forgotten greats of American photography."Source: Wikipedia Born in Chicago, Edmund Teske began taking photographs at age seven with his mother's Kodak Scout 2-C camera. In 1931, while attending evening classes at the Huttle Art Studio, he installed a photographic studio in his family's basement. Soon he purchased a view camera and started photographing the streets of his hometown. After working for a commercial studio in Chicago, Teske was awarded a photographic fellowship in 1936 that enabled him to study under the guidance of the architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Teske taught in the late 1930s at Chicago's New Bauhaus (later the Institute of Design), then moved to New York to work as Berenice Abbott's assistant. In 1943, Teske settled in Los Angeles, where he became interested in cinema, and in the early 1950s he was active with several small theater groups. During this period Teske refined the experimental photographic processes that he had begun to explore in the 1930s, such as solarization, combination printing, and chemical toning, and began to regularly exhibit and publish his work. In the 1960s, Teske was an influential visiting professor of photography at UCLA and other schools.Source: International Center of Photography Edmund Teske believed in the transformative potential of photography. He was interested in more than the inherent characteristic of the medium to record a specific moment in time. For Teske photography was a way to explore the soul of his subjects and creating the negative was only the beginning. His composites of multiple negatives and his use of solarization, as well as his exquisite gelatin silver prints, express the complexity and depth of his personal vision. His composites often layered images from different periods and places and sometimes outside sources. As the assemblage artist George Herms suggested, Teske's composites and solarizations are like Jazz variations on a theme. Though they often contain allegory and symbolism, they are not nostalgic. Rather, they exist as expressions of his various beliefs. Teske believed in the coexistence of both the masculine and the feminine within every individual. Furthermore, he believed in the connectedness of all life and that time is both fluid and cyclical. In the 1930s, Edmund Teske gained experience in theater and portraiture photography and became friends with Nathan Lerner, who introduced Teske to Laszlo Moholy-Nagy. During the depression, he photographed for Frank Lloyd Wright, Paul Strand (for his film, Native Land), and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and he printed for Berenice Abbott. In 1943 Teske traveled to Arizona to photograph at Wright’s Taliesin West and continued on to Los Angeles where he became friends with Man Ray and Anaïs Nin. Teske was introduced to Vedantic thought, a Hindu philosophy, and its mythology and symbolism greatly influenced Teske’s later work. In 1950 he moved to Topanga Canyon where he became a part of an enclave of artists, black-listed actors and intellectuals, including Wallace Berman, Will Geer, George Herms, Walter Hopps and Dean Stockwell. It was during this time within a nurturing environment of like-minded, creative, free-thinking individuals that Teske's singular style evolved. Teske’s work was included in Museum of Modern Art’s 1960 The Sense of Abstraction show and it was Edward Steichen who named Teske’s innovative process “duotone solarization.” While teaching at UCLA in the 1960s, Teske was a colleague of Robert Heineken and became a mentor to many local photographers.Source: Gitterman Gallery
Jerry Takigawa
United States
1945
Jerry Takigawa studied photography with Don Worth at San Francisco State University and received a degree in art with an emphasis in painting. He has been the recipient of a variety of photographic honors and awards including the Imogen Cunningham Award (1982); nominated for the Santa Fe Prize (2007); nominated for the Prix Pictet (2013, 2016); Critical Mass Top 50 (2017, 2020); The Clarence John Laughlin Award (2017); LensCulture, Fine Art Photography Awards Finalist (2018); New York Center for Photographic Art, Humans, First Place (2018); CENTER Awards, Curator's Choice-First Place (2018); the Rhonda Wilson Award (2020); and the Foto Forum Santa Fe Award, Santa Fe NM (2021). Internationally exhibited, his work is included in the permanent collections of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the Crocker Art Museum, the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, the Library of Congress, and the Monterey Museum of Art. Takigawa lives and works in Carmel Valley, California. False Food False Food underscores a plastic pollution epidemic that we now know is universally destructive and, tragically, man-made. False Food portrays pieces of plastic waste, recovered from the stomachs of dead albatross, placed in surprising and unfamiliar contexts. Presenting the problem in a different light can promote new ways to think about (and act on) it. Negative images trigger our reptilian brain where clear, ethical thinking is lacking. In this way, warnings about terror can become acts of terror themselves-amplifying fear and blinding us to answers. I believe aesthetically recontextualizing environmental threat opens the heart to not turn away. In this way I wanted to make something transformative-something that didn't terrorize consciousness, but elevated it. Balancing Cultures In Balancing Cultures, I am working with layers of meaning, memory, family, and- centrally-the actions and consequences of Roosevelt's Executive Order 9066. Issued in 1942, it caused the incarceration of 120,000 American citizens and legal residents of Japanese ancestry. My recent discovery of family photographs, taken in the WWII American concentration camps, compelled me to examine my family's unspoken feelings of shame and loss. I wanted to give voice to those feelings, which they had kept concealed for fear of retribution.
Thomas Annan
Scotland
1829 | † 1887
Thomas Annan was a Scottish photographer, notable for being the first to record the bad housing conditions of the poor. Born in Dairsie, Fife he was one of seven children of John Annan, a flax spinner. After his initial apprenticeship as a lithographic writer and engraver at the Fife Herald in Cupar, he moved to Glasgow in 1849 and worked as a lithographer and engraver for Joseph Swan until 1855. He set up business with George Berwick at 40 Woodlands Road, Glasgow, listing in the 1855 - 56 Glasgow post office directory as calotypists, practitioners of this early form of photography. In 1855, he photographed the ship RMS Persia, under construction on the Clyde, which was probably a commission by engineer, Robert Napier. This photograph was part of a group of images sent to the Photographic Exhibition in connection with the British Association. After dissolving his previous partnership, he established himself in a photographic studio at 116 Sauchiehall Street during 1857. In 1859, the business moved to 200 Hope Street and he was also able to establish a printing works in Hamilton in 1863. First interested largely in architectural photography and then portraits, as well as photographing artworks and maps, in 1866 Annan photographed slum areas of the city. These images were used by Glasgow City Improvement Trust to document the overcrowded, unhygienic conditions ahead of extensive redevelopments. It was this series of photographs, created between 1868 and 1871, entitled Old Closes and Streets of Glasgow, that ensured his posterity. In 1869, Annan purchased the contents of Rock House, which belonged David Octavius Hill, which included many of Hill's photographs and negatives. These were eventually exhibited by Thomas' son, James Craig Annan, and reproduced in photogravure in Alfred Stieglitz's journal Camera Work. Annan's photographs of the Loch Katrine Waterworks were praised in the British Journal of Photography: "The views by Mr. Annan could scarcely fail to be attractive, for in a country so beautiful a clever artist is bound to produce results in keeping with the nature of the subject, and this Mr. Annan has done." Indeed, Annan's work was often praised not only for its aesthetics, but also for its technical virtuosity. Twenty years later, Annan's studio would be singled out by Baden Pritchard for its accomplishments in carbon printing and "beautiful pictures of exteriors and interiors of Scotch strongholds." Thomas Annan purchased the rights to the photogravure process in Britain from Karel Klíč of Vienna in 1883 after visiting the city with his second son, James Craig Annan. James was a noted photogravurist and associated with late nineteenth-century art photography continued in his father's profession, receiving a Royal Warrant as Photographers and Photographic Engravers to Her Majesty in Glasgow. Thomas Annan died on 14 December 1887 at his home in Lenzie. Before his death by suicide, he had experienced a month-long period of "mental aberration". The family business survives to the present day in the form of the Annan Fine Art Gallery, located on Woodlands Road in the West End of Glasgow. A selection of prints from the Glasgow Improvements act 1868 series were displayed in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery from 2011 to 2012. In 2017, the J. Paul Getty Museum curated an exhibition entitled Thomas Annan: Photographer of Glasgow, the first to survey his career and legacy as photographer and printer.Source: Wikipedia
Mária Švarbová
Slovakia
1988
Mária Švarbová was born in 1988; she currently lives in Slovakia. Despite studying restoration and archeology, her preferred artistic medium is photography. From 2010 to the present, the immediacy of Maria's photographic instinct continues to garner international acclaim and is setting new precedents in photographic expression. The recipient of several prestigious awards, her solo and group exhibitions have placed her among the vanguard of her contemporaries, attracting features in Vogue, Forbes, The Guardian, and publications around the world; her work is frequently in the limelight of social media. Maria's reputation also earned her a commission for a billboard-sized promotion on the massive Taipei 101 tower, in Taiwan. Maria's distinctive style departs from traditional portraiture and focuses on experimentation with space, colour, and atmosphere. Taking an interest in Socialist era architecture and public spaces, Maria transforms each scene with a modern freshness that highlights the depth and range of her creative palette. The human body throughout her oeuvre is more or less a peripheral afterthought, often portrayed as aloof and demure rather than substantive. Carefully composed figures create thematic, dream-like scenes with ordinary objects. Her images hold a silent tension that hints at emergent possibilities under the lilt of clean and smooth surfaces. There is often a sense of cool detachment and liminality in Maria's work. Routine actions such as exercise, doctor appointments, and domestic tasks are reframed with a visual purity that is soothing and symmetrical and at times reverberant with an ethereal stillness. The overall effect evokes a contemplative silence in an extended moment of promise and awareness—a quality difficult to achieve in the rapid pace of modern life. Maria's postmodern vision boldly articulates a dialog that compels the viewer to respond to the mystery, loneliness, and isolation of the human experience. Nevertheless, deeply embedded within the aqueous pastels, Maria's compositions hold to a celebratory elegance that transforms the viewer's gaze into an enduring reverence for life's simple beauty. Hasselblad Master 2018 Forbes 30 under 30 Winner of International Photography Awards 2016 All about Swimming Pool In the Swimming Pool is Maria's largest series yet, originating in 2014 and continuing to develop to date. Sparked by a hunt for interesting location, her fascination with the space of public swimming pools contributed to developing her visual style. Sterile, geometric beauty of old pools set the tone for these photographs. Each of them pictures a different pool, usually built in the Socialist Era, in various locations in Slovakia. There is almost cinematographic quality to the highly controlled sceneries that Maria captures. The figures are mid-movement, but there is no joyful playfulness to them. Frozen in the composition, the swimmers are as smooth and cold as the pools tiles. The colours softly vibrate in a dream-like atmosphere. Despite the retro setting, the pictures somehow evoke a futuristic feeling as well, as if they were taken somewhere completely alien. There is no disturbing emotion, there is no individuality in their stillness. The artificial detachment, created by Maria's visual vision, allows unique visual pleasure, unattainable in real life.
Julian Wasser
United States
1938
Julian Wasser started his career in photography in the Washington DC bureau of the Associated Press. While at Associated Press he met Weegee and rode with the famous news photographer as he shot photos of crime scenes in Washington. Weegee was a major influence on Wasser’s style of photography. After serving in the Navy in San Diego the former AP copyboy became a contract photographer for Time Magazine in Los Angeles doing assignments for Time, Life, and Fortune. His photographs have appeared in and been used as covers of Time, Newsweek, and People magazines in the United States. He has done cover assignments for The Sunday Telegraph, and The Sunday Times colour supplements in London. His photos have appeared in US Magazine, Vanity Fair, TV Guide, Paris Match, Der Spiegel, Oggi, Hello, Playboy, Elle, Vogue, and GQ and in exhibitions in galleries and museums.Source: www.julianwasser.com Perhaps his most notorious photo session was of groundbreaking artist Marcel Duchamp playing chess with a naked Eve Babitz in 1963 at the Pasadena Museum of Art during Duchamp’s first retrospective. Organized by Walter Hopps, then director of the museum (now the Norton Simon Museum), the exhibition was the first comprehensive survey of Duchamp’s storied career, which began in 1911 at the legendary Armory show in New York. Duchamp, by this time, was the most influential artist in the world, having revolutionized the modern art world with his unconventional concepts. At the time, he had retired from being an artist to pursue his passion for chess. His numerous works had never been shown collectively, and the landmark show is still considered to be one of the seminal exhibitions of all time. The opening night was a who’s who of the most highly-regarded artists and collectors of the era, and effectively inaugurated the establishment of the Pop art movement. Among the group of up-and-coming artists who attended were Andy Warhol, Billy Al Bengston and Ed Ruscha.Source: Juxtapoz In 1963 a long overdue retrospective for Marcel Duchamp, arguably the most significant and influential artist of the 20th century was held at the Pasadena Art Museum. The exhibition, curated by art world renegade and acting museum director, Walter Hopps, was Duchamp’s very first museum retrospective in the United States and a coup for the West Coast art world. Having produced some of the most groundbreaking examples of conceptual art since the early part of the century, Duchamp was a legendary figure by the 1960s and his presence in California was a pivotal moment in L.A. history and lore. Artists and luminaries including Ed Ruscha, Billy Al Bengston, Larry Bell, Dennis Hopper and a very boyish Andy Warhol flocked to the opening gala of Duchamp’s retrospective and Time Magazine sent L.A. based photographer, Julian Wasser to cover the event. At the time, Wasser, who began his career as a teenager shooting crime scenes in Washington D.C., was unaware of Duchamp’s significance in the pantheon of art. But known for being in the right place at the right time and catching formative moments in L.A. history with an unmistakable eye, Wasser not only captured the energy of Duchamp’s opening reception, but produced several of the most iconic pictures of the artist ever made. Duchamp posing next to his groundbreaking readymade Bicycle Wheel, originally conceived in 1913 and Duchamp playing chess with a nude Eve Babitz were among the images Wasser took while on assignment. Though Time never published Wasser’s pictures, the latter photograph, inspired by one of Duchamp’s master paintings Nude Descending a Staircase and the artist’s obsession with chess, went on to become one of the most recognizable staged photographs of the 20th Century. The exhibition Julian Wasser : Duchamp in Pasadena Revisited brought the quintessential photographs of Julian Wasser, together with an installation of appropriated works of art produced primarily by L.A. based artist Gregg Gibbs to create an exclusive experience of the 1963 Duchamp retrospective at the Pasadena Art Museum. Works on view originally produced by Duchamp and appropriated by Gibbs included early works such as Bicycle Wheel, Nude Descending a Staircase, I.H.O.O.Q, 1919; With Hidden Noise, 1916, and one of Duchamp’s masterworks (The Large Glass) The Bride Stripped Bare of Her Bachelors, Even 1915-1923. The piece de resistance was a life-sized recreation of Wasser’s now-infamous photograph of Marcel Duchamp and Eve Babitz playing chess at the museum in 1963.Source: Robert Berman Gallery
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