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John Thomson
John Thomson
John Thomson

John Thomson

Country: Scotland
Birth: 1837 | Death: 1921

John Thomson, one of the great figures of nineteenth century photography, is known for the unusual and exotic nature of his chosen subject matter. Born in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1837, Thomson took up photography as a profession in his early twenties. For ten years, from 1862, he traveled and explored the Far East, visiting Hong Kong, Singapore, Penang and the Malay Peninsula, Siam, Cambodia, Vietnam, Formosa and especially China. Utilizing a large wooden box-type camera capable of accommodating a glass plate of up to 12 x 16 inches, John Thomson photographed commoners and kings, attempting to capture the individual behind the veneer of social status. His photographic record of the Far East documented a complete panorama of the cultures and people of the Far East at a time when Westerners were a few and curious lot. John Thomson not only created a photographic history, but also wrote numerous articles and books on his travels and views of life in the Far East. There is no doubt that it was Thomson’s sympathetic approach to his subjects, and the dignity with which he embued them, as much as his great technical expertise, which enabled him to produce such an outstanding photographic documentary. It is this marriage between sensitivity, technical expertise and sheer professionalism, not to mention his voluminous literary output and descriptions of the scenes and people, which he photographed, that has earned Thomson the title of the ‘first of the great photo-journalists’. His work, which has only recently gained full recognition, represents one of the great photo-historical records in the history of documentary photography.
Source Westwood Gallery
 

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Hidetoshi Ogata
Hidetoshi Ogata, born in Osaka, Japan in 1987, is a Japanese photographer. After taking an MSc in Biochemistry, he visited many places around the world to photograph landscapes. His fascination with traditional Japanese fire festivals began when he was 26 and photographed the annual Yassai Hossai fire festival at his birthplace Osaka. Since then, he has travelled around Japan photographing traditional local lore about fire preserved from the past, as part of his ongoing, long-term project, "In Awe of Fire". Ogata has also been working on wild macaques and regularly visits places like Nagano prefecture, Awaji island in Hyogo, and Shodoshima island in Kagawa. He was the 13th Smithsonian Photo Contest Natural World Winner and the National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year 2018 People's Choice nomination. His work has been recognized in various photography competitions, including the LOOK SMITHSONIAN exhibition in Shanghai, and has appeared in magazines, TV programs and Web pages throughout the world such as the Washington Post, NY Daily News, the Daily Mail, CBS, Beijing TV and TV Tokyo. Awards: International Photography Awards (IPA) 2015 Honorable Mention The 13th Smithsonian Photo Contest, Natural World Category, 1st Prize Winner International Photography Awards (IPA) 2016 Honorable Mention Outdoor Photographer of the Year 2017 Shortlist National Geographic Travel Photographer of the Year 2018 Nature People's Choice nomination Media: The Washington Post, USA TODAY, NY Daily News, The Daily Mirror, The Daily Mail, The Daily Telegraph, El País, CBS News, National Geographic, National Geographic Travel Publications: Garuda Indonesia Colours December 2017 Outdoor Photographer of the Year Portfolio III TV: BTV, Sichuan Satellite TV, TV Tokyo Photo Exhibition: LOOK SMITHSONIAN Seoul, LOOK SMITHSONIAN Shanghai
Mitch Rouse
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1940
Mitch was a transportation entrepreneur in Long Beach, and is now a photographer based out of Cody, Wyoming. Before Mitch shot aerial images, he was an avid self-taught landscape photographer. In the realm of aerial photography, he began with with high tech drones and evolved into flying fixed wing. Unsatisfied with the limitations of these methods, he has now found the sweet spot between the two, by developing a system that incorporates a Bell helicopter with a 150 MP Phase One Industrial camera, inside a Shot Over gimbal, mounted to its nose. Mitch most enjoys shooting abstract land patterns and beautiful farmlands throughout the western states. He is also interested in industrial sites including agriculture, transportation, shipping, ports, solar power, wind power, oil and gas. His current projects include Los Angeles - Long Beach Harbor, piers of California, highway interchanges, oil and gas fields in the Central Valley of California, agriculture in the Central Valley of California, and agriculture in the Palouse region Washington, Oregon and Idaho. Top Views of The Palouse Symmetrical farmscapes and the asymmetrical patterns of natural landscapes have always been intriguing to Mitch Rouse, a photographer based out of Cody, Wyoming. Over the last four years, his passion for landscape photography and his deep desire to capture a unique perspective, evolved into taking to the skies with the right technology to capture those exclusive scenes from above. The Palouse in SE Washington is one of his favourite places to explore. Due to its geological heritage, the rolling hills of grasses are an endless sea. Farmland is scattered over this peculiar dune-like landscape, which formed sometime during the last several ice ages, when glacial silt was blown across the region forming dunes called "loess". The farmers who settled on this land had to develop methods of successful harvesting, where to avoid the steep slopes becoming hazardous to their tractors and combines, they would plough along the contours of the hills, this led to the use of special self-levelling harvesters that can cut crops safely and efficiently by constantly adjusting to the different gradients of the slopes. As you can imagine, the lines and patterns that these farming techniques produce, combined with the already picturesque landscape, are captivating from the air. These aerial photographs of The Palouse captured by Mitch, resemble topographical maps where the colour contrasts, line patterns and contour shapes have become a distinctive form of art. Two seasons in The Palouse are equally magnificent in their colours and textures. Mitch enjoys capturing both the vibrant green silky grass seas of Springtime, and the golden brown rough textures of the Harvest. The most appealing thing about photographing The Palouse is this combination of classic features of farmland, spread across this canvas of ‘dunes', resulting in truly mesmerising endless lines in both linear, and in curved patterns, with the play of the light across those textures and gradients, creating shadows and variations in the colour spectrums of the greens and yellows or of the browns and the golds. The aerial perspective gives these abstract art forms a boldness that cannot be fully appreciated from the ground. Mitch's favourite lens to use is a 35mm. This is due to its versatility with 100mp resolution, he can crop in with fantastic detail, or leave it at a wide angle. We think you'll agree that these resulting shots are really stunning and showcase this truly individual area of American geography.
Alice De Kruijs
The Netherlands
1981
Alice de Kruijs is a fine-art photographer based in The Netherlands. She frequently touches the subject of identity and diversity and aims to go against the standard ideals and showcase stories through culture and different ethnic backgrounds, her work is a celebration of these differences in culture. As her way of life, she loves to conceptually and symbolically tell stories. Usually by showing a different perspective on personal daily life struggles. Born in 1981 in the east of The Netherlands she grew up in an artistic family. Nevertheless her true artistic passion in photography started in her late twenties. After graduating from Internation Fashion Design and later on from Applied Photography Design with a specialisation in Fine-art portraits she dedicated her life to conceptual photography. In her early thirties she gradually moved to fine-art photography in combination with story telling photography. Family Member(s) In this serie I honour my beloved grandmother. She has been a friend and inspiration my entire life. Although she passed away in 1994, when I was just 13 year old my memories are vibrant. This year (2020), August 2nd she would have celebrated her 100th birthday. On this day, I have publish the complete body of work existing of 18 images plus 10 original images. In some images, I copied the old photo from our family photo books. The story starts with an images from my great grandma before and after pregnancy of her 5 children (see family picture), following with an image of my grandmother at age 3. It continues with images of her when she was a young teenager and as a young adult just before World war II. During the war, not many pictures were taken of her. The first image after WWII is the marriage photo. She struggled with a lot of miscarriages in the late 1940's but finally my father was born in May 1950, I would be her only child. During the 1980's she started having breast cancer and later on bone cancer. After many years trying to fulfill life as much as possible, she died from bone bone cancer at age 74. The last image represents her death. As this is a very personal project and shot during COVID 19 period I only photographed myself or my direct family members for the duo image. This created an even stronger bound. This serie is dedicated to Jeanne Margaretha de Kruijs - Slotboom 02/08/1920 - 14/01/1994
Abelardo Morell
Abelardo (Abe) Morell (born 1948 in Havana, Cuba) is a Boston-based photographer. Morell and his family fled Cuba in 1962, moving to New York City. Morell earned a Bachelor of Arts from Bowdoin College in 1977, and a Master of Fine Arts from Yale University School of Art in 1981. He received an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree from Bowdoin in 1997. Morell is well known in the photographic community for creating camera obscura images in various places around the world and photographing these. Morell was awarded the Cintas Foundation fellowship in 1992 and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in 1993. Morell is currently a professor of photography at the Massachusetts College of Art. He is represented by Bonni Benrubi Gallery, NYC. A documentary on elements of Morell's life and work, Shadow of the House, was released in 2007. (Source: Wikipedia) He has received a num­ber of awards and grants, which include a Cin­tas grant in 1992 a Guggen­heim fel­low­ship in 1994 a Rap­pa­port Prize in 2006 and an Alturas Foun­da­tion grant in 2009 to pho­to­graph the land­scape of West Texas. He was the recip­i­ent of the Inter­na­tional Cen­ter of Pho­tog­ra­phy 2011 Infin­ity award in Art. His work has been col­lected and shown in many gal­leries, insti­tu­tions and muse­ums, includ­ing the Museum of Mod­ern Art, The Whit­ney Museum of Amer­i­can Art, the Met­ro­pol­i­tan Art Museum in New York, The Chicago Art Insti­tute, The San Fran­cisco Museum of Mod­ern Art, The Hous­ton Museum of Art, The Boston Museum of Fine Art, The Vic­to­ria & Albert Museum and over sev­enty other muse­ums in the United States and abroad. A ret­ro­spec­tive of his work orga­nized jointly by the Art Insti­tute of Chicago, The Getty and The High Museum in Atlanta will be on view start­ing in the sum­mer of 2013. His pub­li­ca­tions include a pho­to­graphic illus­tra­tion of Alice’s Adven­tures in Won­der­land (1998) by Dut­ton Children’s Books, A Cam­era in a Room (1995) by Smith­son­ian Press, A Book of Books (2002) and Cam­era Obscura (2004) by Bulfinch Press and Abelardo Morell (2005), pub­lished by Phaidon Press. Recent pub­li­ca­tions include a lim­ited edi­tion book by The Museum of Mod­ern Art in New York of his Cliché Verre images with a text by Oliver Sacks. He lives with his wife, Lisa McE­laney, a film­maker, and his chil­dren Brady and Laura in Brook­line, Massachusetts. Film­maker Allie Humenuk has made a film enti­tled Shadow of the House, an in-depth doc­u­men­tary about Morell’s work and expe­ri­ence as an artist. (Source: www.abelardomorell.net)
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Nanna Heitmann
Germany/ Russia
Nanna Heitmann is a German/ Russian documentary photographer, based between Russia and Germany. Her work has been published by TIME Magazine, M Le Magazine du Monde, De Volkskrant, Stern Magazine and she has worked on assignments for outlets including The New York Times, TIME Magazine, The Washington Post and Stern Magazine. She has received awards that include the Leica Oscar Barnack Newcomer Award, the Ian Parry Award of Achievement. Nanna Heitmann joined Magnum as a nominee in 2019. Hiding from Baba Yaga "Vasilisa was running faster than she had ever run before. Soon she could hear the witch, Baba Yaga's mortar bumping on the ground behind her. Desperately, she remembered the thin black cat's words and threw the towel behind her on the ground. The towel grew bigger and bigger, and wetter and wetter, and soon a deep, broad river stood between the little girl and Baba Yaga. Vasilisa threw the comb behind her, and the comb grew bigger and bigger, and its teeth sprouted up into a thick forest, so thick that not even Baba Yaga could force her way through. And Baba Yaga the witch, the bony-legged one, gnashing her teeth and screaming with rage and disappointment, finally turned round and drove away back to her little hut on hen's legs." From time immemorial people have sought protection and freedom on the banks of the Yenisei and the adjacent wild taiga. For a long time, the banks of the Yenisei have been pervaded by nomadic peoples. The Russians, coming from the west, chased by the greed for valuable fur, did not reach the river until 1607. Criminals, escaped serfs, apostates or simply adventurers, joined together in wild rider associations and expanded ever deeper into the vast wild Taiga. The life of the settlers in Siberia was free and self-determined for the time. Old believers settled on lonely banks of the Yenisei to escape the persecution of the Tsar and later the Soviets. With Stalin the Yenisei became a place of exile and forced labor. The Soviets not only chained the native peoples, but also the Yenisei. With two giant dams they created lakes of almost 400km length. Villages sank in the water, the climate changed. A dense fog swept over the river. The USSR is history. Today, most people are drawn to big cities like Moscow or St Petersburg. Therefore the Yenisei turns more and more into a space for dreamers and loners to escape the worldly world. Not far from the banks of the Yenisei lives Yuri, who has built a small hut on a landfill. Here he can find food for his 15 former street dogs, here he lives freely. Nothing keeps him in the city, where thick coal dust covers the white snow in winter. "All my friends are in the cemetery. Drugs or alcohol." Following the stream of the Yenisei north one encounters Valentin. An self claimed anarch ecologist - a former officer, traumatized by war missions. Today he lives on his small property in the forest. Even at minus 50 degrees, he sleeps outside by the fire. From endless wars he has enough. "All the people of this world, live together in peace and protect your forests." Only to those who threaten the Siberian forests he declares war. "We have a wonderful forest. How many tress grow here. But we need more forests to breathe. Humanity destroyed our forests. These must be revived immediately. " Not far from the source of the Yenisei, Vaselisa lives in the village of Old Believers. Her parents are both deaf and the only heathens in a village that lives strictly to century-old rituals. She doesn't like the children in her village. Her only friend lives in the village of Sissim. While summer holidays the Yenisei and a walk separates them from each other. Encountering all this different people, there is a bond which connects them with each other. The seek of freedom, protection, imprisonment and isolation. The Yenisei and its woods become a metaphor of a dreamscape: Loneliness, unfulfilled dreams, death, abandoned hopes shape people as much as the vast nature, which at the same time gives so much freedom and places of retreat.
Edward Steichen
United States
1879 | † 1973
Edward Steichen (1879 - 1973) was born in Luxembourg, but immigrated to the United States, to Milwaukee, in 1880. In 1894, Steichen began a four-year lithography apprenticeship with the American Fine Art Company of Milwaukee. After hours, he would sketch and draw, and began to teach himself to paint. Having come across a camera shop near to his work, he bought his first camera, a secondhand Kodak box "detective" camera, in 1895. In 1900, as Steichen headed to Paris to study painting, he stopped in New York. By that time he was an aspiring painter and an accomplished photographer in the soft-focus, Pictorial style and he made a pilgrimage to the Camera Club of New York to show his work to Alfred Stieglitz, the leading tastemaker in American photography. Stieglitz, vice-president of the Camera Club and editor of its journal Camera Notes, was impressed by the young artist from Milwaukee and bought three of his photographs-a self-portrait and two moody, atmospheric woodland scenes printed in platinum-for the impressive sum of five dollars each. Elated, Steichen then boarded the ship for Europe. Once in France, Steichen quickly abandoned his painting studies and began to focus his energies on photography. He learned the technical intricacies of the gum bichromate process, popular among the members of the Photo-Club de Paris, and developed a reputation as a portraitist of noted artists, writers, and members of society. Arriving back in New York in 1902, Steichen rented a studio on the top floor of a brownstone at 291 Fifth Avenue and hung out his shingle; his work as a professional portrait photographer flourished. That same year, Stieglitz announced the formation of the Photo-Secession-the name he gave to the loose-knit group of photographers he exhibited, published, and promoted during the next decade and a half-and the publication of a new, still more lavish journal, Camera Work. Over the fifteen-year, fifty-issue run of Camera Work, no other artist would be featured as prominently as Steichen, who had sixty-five photographs and three paintings reproduced in fifteen issues, including a "Special Steichen Supplement" in April 1906 and an all-Steichen double issue in 1913. In 1906, Steichen determined "to get away from the lucrative but stultifying professional portrait business" and return to France with his family in hopes of resuscitating his idled painting career. It was a move with numerous consequences. For one, it positioned him to embrace the Autochrome, the process for making glass-plate color transparencies introduced by the Lumière brothers in 1907. Steichen-who had experimented with various methods such as gum bichromate to introduce color into his photographs-was enthralled by the technique. Steichen also made what he called his "first attempt at serious documentary reportage" in the summer of 1907, using a borrowed hand camera. Steichen returned to the U.S. in 1914. Serving in the US Army in World War I (and the US Navy in the Second World War), Steichen commanded significant units contributing to military photography. After World War I, during which he commanded the photographic division of the American Expeditionary Forces, he reverted to straight photography, gradually moving into editorial and fashion photography. His portraits of Greta Garbo, Marlene Dietrich, Gloria Swanson, and other celebrities appeared in Vogue and Vanity Fair in the 1920s and 1930s. From 1947-1962, Steichen served as the Director of Photography at New York's Museum of Modern Art.. Among other accomplishments, Steichen is appreciated for creating the 1955 exhibition, The Family of Man, at the Museum of Modern Art consisting of over 500 photographs. Steichen purchased a farm that he called Umpawaug in 1928, just outside West Redding, Connecticut, and lived there until his death. Source: Howard Greenberg Gallery
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