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Laurence Demaison
Laurence Demaison
Laurence Demaison

Laurence Demaison

Country: France
Birth: 1965

Having practiced various means of artistic expression (painting, drawing, sculpture) since childhood, and completing formal training in architecture in 1988, Laurence began her self-taught journey into photography in 1990. Particularly interested in the female portrait and nude, and finding it difficult to adequately convey her mental images into words and direction, she gave up on the use of models and began to use herself exclusively as the subject of her photographs. Freed from the burden of words and the presence of others, she embraced the solitude, silence and freedom, while struggling to confront the image of her own body. Rather than portraying her body as it was, she sought to conceal, modify, even destroy it and reconstruct it in a form more acceptable to her. The result is a series of self-portraits which expertly use the reflective and distortive qualities of her materials along with the shadowy effects of light and negative images to create "paper phantoms", ghosts of herself that are there, yet disappear in an instant.

Laurence creates all of her images in camera and executes the silver gelatin prints in her own darkroom, with no alteration of the image after shooting. She has been the recipient of numerous awards and honors from European photographic organizations and her work has been exhibited extensively in Paris and elsewhere in France, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Luxembourg and Belgium. This is the first gallery exhibition of her work in the United States.

Source: Galerie BMG

 

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Frances Benjamin Johnston
United States
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Frances "Fannie" Benjamin Johnston (15 January 1864 – 16 May 1952) was an early American female photographer and photojournalist whose career lasted for almost half a century. She is most known for her portraits, images of southern architecture, and various photographic series featuring African Americans and Native Americans at the turn of the 20th century. The only surviving child of wealthy and well connected parents, she was born in Grafton, West Virginia, raised in Washington, D.C., and studied at the Académie Julian in Paris and the Washington Students League following her graduation from Notre Dame of Maryland Collegiate Institute for Young Ladies in 1883 (now known as Notre Dame of Maryland University). An independent and strong-willed young woman, she wrote articles for periodicals before finding her creative outlet through photography after she was given her first camera by George Eastman, a close friend of the family, and inventor of the new, lighter, Eastman Kodak cameras. 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Johnston was a constant advocate for the role of women in the burgeoning art of photography. The Ladies' Home Journal published Johnston's article "What a Woman Can Do With a Camera" in 1897[9] and she co-curated (with Zaida Ben-Yusuf) an exhibition of photographs by twenty-eight women photographers at the 1900 Exposition Universelle, which afterwards travelled to Saint Petersburg, Moscow, and Washington, DC. She traveled widely in her thirties, taking a wide range of documentary and artistic photographs of coal miners, iron workers, women in New England's mills and sailors being tattooed on board ship as well as her society commissions. While in England she photographed the stage actress Mary Anderson, who was a friend of her mother. In 1899, she gained further notability when she was commissioned by Hollis Burke Frissell to photograph the buildings and students of the Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute in Hampton, Virginia in order to show its success. This series, documenting the ordinary life of the school, remains as some of her most telling work. It was displayed at The Exhibit of American Negroes of the Paris Exposition Universelle in 1900. She photographed events such as world's fairs and peace-treaty signings and took the last portrait of President William McKinley, at the Pan-American Exposition of 1901 just before his assassination. With her partner, Mattie Edwards Hewitt, a successful freelance home and garden photographer in her own right, she opened a studio in New York in 1913 and moved in with her mother and aunt. Hewitt wrote Johnston love letters over the course of their relationship, which are chronicled in "The Woman Behind the Lens: The Life and Work of Frances Benjamin Johnston, 1864–1952." Many of the early letters focused on Hewitt's admiration for Johnston's work, but as their romance progressed, they became increasingly full of words of love: "...when I need you or you need me — [we] must hold each other all the closer and with your hand in mine, holding it tight..." She lectured at New York University on business for women and they produced a series of studies of New York architecture through the 1920s. In early 1920 her mother died in New York. In the 1920s, she became increasingly interested in photographing architecture, motivated by a desire to document buildings and gardens which were falling into disrepair or about to be redeveloped and lost. As her focus in architecture grew, she became specifically interested in documenting the architecture of the American South. Johnston was interested in preserving the everyday history of the American South through her art; she accomplished this by photographing barns, inns, and other ordinary structures. She was not interested in photographing the grand homes and estates of the American South, but rather the quickly deteriorating structures in these communities that portrayed the life of common southerners. Her photographs remain an important resource for modern architects, historians and conservationists. She exhibited a series of 247 photographs of Fredericksburg, Virginia, from the decaying mansions of the rich to the shacks of the poor, in 1928. The exhibition was entitled Pictorial Survey--Old Fredericksburg, Virginia--Old Falmouth and Nearby Places and described as "A Series of Photographic Studies of the Architecture of the Region Dating by Tradition from Colonial Times to Circa 1830" as "An Historical Record and to Preserve Something of the Atmosphere of An Old Virginia Town." Publicity from the display prompted the University of Virginia to hire her to document its buildings and the state of North Carolina to record its architectural history. Louisiana hired Johnston to document its huge inventory of rapidly deteriorating plantations and she was given a grant in 1933 by the Carnegie Corporation of New York to document Virginia's early architecture. This led to a series of grants and photographs of eight other southern states, all of which were given to the Library of Congress for public use. In December 1935, she began a year long project to capture the less evolved structures of the Colonial Era in Virginia. This was effort was intended to be a one year project, but evolved into an eight year extensive project, in which she surveyed 50,000 miles and 95 counties in Virginia. Johnston was named an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects for her work in preserving old and endangered buildings and her collections have been purchased by institutions such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and the Baltimore Museum of Art. Although her relentless traveling was curtailed by petrol rationing in the Second World War the tireless Johnston continued to photograph. Johnston acquired a home in the French Quarter of New Orleans in 1940, retiring there in 1945, where she died in 1952 at the age of eighty-eight.Source: Wikipedia
Philippe Marchand
Philippe Marchand was born in 1961, self-taught photographer. He lives in Nantes in the West of France. He collaborates with numerous advertising and illustration agencies where his photographies contribute to the promotion of renowned brands. He is also developing a personal work on the link between man and the sea. We find in the pictures he brings back from his hikes all the Power and the magic of the places he goes through. Its aesthetic approach, the technical constraints it imposes on itself contribute to the creation of a singular photographic universe and resolutely personal. This award-winning work is regularly published in the international press. The Man and the Sea "The sea is present in everyone's imagination, it means dream and adventure, but also mystery and fear. What I am trying to develop through the link that unites man with the sea concerns the emotions that the ocean can arouse in each of us, through evocative images. Not the translation of reality. In the manner of the pictorialists whose movement originated at the end of the 19th century and for whom the image must go beyond the reality photographed. I try to capture the atmosphere of the place, the poetry and the mystery that surrounds it. The shooting is the first part of a process that also includes a long work in "darkroom" to try to recreate the "Feeling" of the moment". Philippe Marchand, photographer of seafarers. Black, white, shadow, light, what can be seen and what can be guessed, the ocean and those who are close to it. Philippe Marchand opens the world of the sea to us in its most intimate and human aspects. His approach is sensitive, full of nuances and modesty. Philippe Marchand's photos are like fragments of history. He highlights the relationship between the sea and people: how they look at it, how they approach it and the intimacy they share with it through their activities and passions. Man's imprint on the seascape and the ocean's imprint on the lives of men, even in their attitudes and faces. The secret communion between people and the sea. The artist has opted for the panoramic format and black and white. Facing the ocean, the format imposed itself. The immensity of the sea is exalted, the fragility of men is highlighted. With black and white, more timeless than colour, Philippe shows us the permanence of the places and gestures of the unchanging world of the sea. We have the feeling that time stands still. There is no rush, no run. Life has always had the rhythm of the ocean. Through a subtle play of contrasts, greys and light, a real "paw stroke" of the photographer, the images are linked together, inseparable, part of a whole, of a universe where Philippe invites us to share his emotions. The grain, very present, attenuates, coats the real and reinforces the poetic side of the images. The characters are most often from the back or almost from the back, partly hidden by the play of shadows. The gaze is discreet, never really, never completely encompassing them. There is like a mystery in the air, which Philippe lets us "glimpse"...
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