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Anne Helene Gjelstad
Anne Helene Gjelstad
Anne Helene Gjelstad

Anne Helene Gjelstad

Country: Norway
Birth: 1956

Anne Helene Gjelstad is an award-winning photographer and educator. After graduation from the Norwegian National Academy of Craft and Art Industry in 1982 she had her own fashion studio in Oslo for 25 years. Among her clients were HM Queen Sonja, Norwegian artists, magazines and the textile industry. In 2006 she felt the need for a change and decided to follow her childhood dream and become a photographer. She took the two-year class in photography at Bilder Nordic School of Photography (2007-08) as well a numerous workshops by some of the leading photographers of our time such as Joyce Tenneson, Mary Ellen Mark, Greg Gorman and Vee Speers.

Anne Helene's works has been has been exhibited worldwide; in the National Art Museum of China in Beijing, in Centro Fotografico Alvarez Bravo in Mexico, in Ljubljana in Slovenia, around Estonia including the Lobby in the Estonian Parliament in Tallinn and in the National Museum in Tartu as well as in The House of Photography in Oslo.

Anne Helene Gjelstad has her photo studio in an old barn surrounded by beautiful landscape just outside of Oslo. She also gives lectures and teaches portrait photography and postproduction. For her portraits, she is rewarded numerous awards.

Statement
For eleven years, since 2008, I have worked on portraying the lives of the older women on the small Estonian islands of Kihnu and Manija in the Baltic Sea. Colourful, interesting and friendly, they represent a culture and a way of life that is changing despite the strong anchor of tradition. These robust women are used to working hard, and take care of almost everything. They bring up the children, make the clothes, plough the fields, drive the tractors and take care of the animals. The men spend much time away from home, fishing or working on the mainland or abroad. Life is often hard. This is normal here. Nobody asks questions. You do what you must. This is how you get a big heart and strong hands.

The voices of these hushed culture bearers need to be heard and kept for generations to come in a small society that is rapidly changing towards western standards, and where the traditional culture and identity is naturally slipping away. I have aimed to tell the women's stories truthfully and I have photographed their daily lives and activities, clothing and bedrooms, kitchens and farmhouses, the details, the surroundings and landscapes as well as the ceremony held in a deceased person's kitchen only three hours after she had passed away. To tell the fuller story, I have also interviewed some of the women about their lives, their experiences during war and occupation, family life, work, food and thoughts about the future. My book is my contribution to record and help preserve this unique culture for the future and give these old, wise women the voice they deserve as the quiet nation builders they really are.
 

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Photography historian Naomi Rosenblum described Braun's work as representative of the relationship between art and commercialism in the mid-19th century. His self-sustaining Mulhouse studio helped elevate photography from a craft to a full-scale business enterprise, producing thousands of unique images which were reproduced and marketed throughout Europe and North America. Rosenblum also suggests that Braun's detailed reproductions of works of art in European museums brought these works to art students in North America, providing a major catalyst for the field of art history in the United States. Braun's early photographs were primarily of flowers, originally taken to complement his work as a pattern designer. Subsequent photographs focused on Alpine landscapes, especially lake scenes, and glacier scenes. Unlike many landscape photographers during this period, Braun liked to include people in his scenes. Photography historian Helmut Gernsheim suggested that Braun was one of the most skillful photographers of his era in rendering composition. While not known as a portraitist, he did take portraits of several notable individuals, including Pope Pius IX, Franz Liszt, and the Countess of Castiglione, mistress of Napoleon III. Braun's work has been exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The J. Paul Getty Museum, the George Eastman House, and the Musée d'Orsay. His photographs of Parisian street scenes and Alpine landscapes are frequently reproduced in works on the history of photography.Source: Wikipedia Trained as a fabric designer, Adolphe Braun began his photography career in 1853. His photographs of flowers, for a catalog titled Fleurs photographiées, were to be transferred onto printing blocks for wallpaper and fabric designs. It was an extremely successful project for Braun; one album of the photographs was presented to Empress Eugénie of France, and it earned him a medal at the 1855 Paris Exposition Universelle. By the early 1860s, Braun's focus had shifted to the making of topographical views of scenes throughout Europe and, beginning in 1866, to reproductions of works of art. The reproduction of paintings, drawings, lithographs, engravings, and sculpture was an important endeavor in France, and photography provided an accurate record. Braun opened a photography studio that became one of the world's largest publishers of such images. In 1869 Braun's was one of only two photographic firms invited to photograph the opening of the Suez Canal in Egypt.Source: The J. Paul Getty Museum
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