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Robert S Johnson
Photo © Katherine Alford
Robert S Johnson
Robert S Johnson

Robert S Johnson

Country: United States
Birth: 1953

Robert S Johnson was born and raised on the grounds of the Boston State Hospital which was founded in 1839 under the name "Boston Lunatic Hospital". He returned to work on the locked wards for his gap year and for summers while in college. The first image he remembers taking was of a bear climbing on the family car in Yellowstone Park. The adults were frozen but he grabbed his mom’s Brownie and shot away.

After five careers, ranging from Artistic Director of THECO, a theater company, to Regional Vice President of a for-profit, after-school education company, he turned to photography fulltime in 2008.

He lives in New York City and Wellfleet MA with his wife, Katherine, and their son, Asher, a (very recent) 2018 graduate of Smith College.
 

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Isabel Muñoz
Spain
1951
Born in Barcelona in 1951, she moved to Madrid in 1970 where nine years later, she registered at PhotoCentro to completely dedicate herself to professional photography. She worked for the press and advertising sector in 1981, and made various still photos during film shoots. After a spell in New York to further her training, she returned to Madrid in 1986 where she produced 'Toques', her first exhibition. She travelled the world between 1990 and 2007, discovering and immersing herself in different artistic and cultural expressions, before producing her following series and exhibitions: 'Shaolín', 'Camboya Herida', 'Capoeira', 'Contorsionistas', 'Tanger', 'Tango' and 'Toros'. She usually works in black and white. She received the Gold Medal for Merit in Fine Arts in 2009 for her work. Source: Spain Culture When she was 20 years old, she moved to Madrid and started studying photography in 1979 in Photocentro. In 1986, she made her first exhibition, "Toques" and she has already made more exhibitions in several countries of the world for more than 20 years. Her black-and-white photos are a study of people through pieces of the human body or pictures of toreros, dancers or warriors, by using a handmade and meticulous process of developing. Her works are in the Maison Européenne de la Photographie, in Paris, the New Museum of Contemporary Art, in New York City, the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston or private collections. Source: Wikipedia Isabel Muñoz stands out as an assertive photographer. Platinum developments and extra large formats are favourite techniques used in order to strengthen her message of passion for the body as a means of approaching the study of human beings. Tango and Flamenco (1989) are considered the starting point of her unremitting search of the sentiments and emotions of world groups and cultures in an attempt to capture the expressions of beauty of the human body. When Muñoz focuses her camera on dancers, wrestlers, warrior monks, bullfighters or deprived children she does it with a strong sense of commitment. Her first individual exhibition, Toques, in 1986 at the French Institute in Madrid and her participation in the Mois de la Photographie in Paris in 1990, set her international projection as a high profile photographer without boundaries. These will be the first of many exhibitions throughout the main cities of Europe, the Americas and Asia. Her photographs are shown at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía (Madrid), Foto Colectania (Barcelona), Fundación Canal (Madrid), Maison Européenne de la Photographie (París), New Museum of Contemporary Art (New York) and Instituto Cervantes (Mexico, Guatemala, Bolivia, Shanghai, Tokio). Isabel Muñoz work has been widely recognized with numerous honours and distinctions. Recent awards include Fundación DEARTE (2012), the UNICEF Spain Awareness Rasing Award in 2010, Bartolomé Ros Prize (PHotoEspaña 2009), the Spanish Ministry of Culture Gold Medal to Fine Arts in Spain (2009), the first prize in photography by Comunidad de Madrid (2006), the two World Press Photo prizes (2000 and 2004), the Biennial of Alexandria Gold Medal (1999), Isabel Muñoz was born in Barcelona in 1951 and lives in Madrid since 1970. Source: LensCulture
Richard Learoyd
United Kingdom
1966
Richard Learoyd was born in the small mill town of Nelson, Lancashire, England in 1966. At the age of 15, his mother insisted he take a pinhole photography workshop, which he attributes as the start of his interest in photography. In 1990 he graduated from the Glasgow School of Art with a degree in Fine Art Photography. While there he studied with American photographer Thomas Joshua Cooper. In 1991 Learoyd was awarded an artist-in-residence at the Scottish Ballet. Learoyd taught photography at Bournemouth and Poole College from 1994 until 1999. In 2000, he moved to London where he worked as a commercial photographer. Source: Wikipedia Richard Learoyd’s color images are made with one of the most antiquarian of photographic processes: the camera obscura. Literally translated from Latin as “dark room,” Learoyd has created a room-sized camera in which the photographic paper is exposed. The subject—often a person, sometimes a still life—is in the adjacent room, separated by a lens. Light falling on the subject is directly focused onto the photographic paper without an interposing film negative. The result is an entirely grainless image. The overall sense of these larger-than-life images redefines the photographic illusion. Learoyd’s subjects, composed simply and directly, are described with the thinnest plane of focus, re-creating and exaggerating the way that the human eye perceives, and not without a small acknowledgement to Dutch Master painting. Learoyd’s black-and-white gelatin silver contact prints are made using the negative/positive process invented roughly 170 years ago by Englishman W. H. Fox Talbot. Working with a large and portable camera obscura of his own construction, Learoyd has journeyed outside of his London studio, into the art-historically rich English countryside, along the California coast, and throughout Eastern Europe, producing images that have long been latent in his imagination. The negatives are up to 80 inches wide, resulting in the largest gelatin-silver contact prints ever made. In 2015, Aperture released Richard Learoyd: Day for Night, a comprehensive book of color portraits and studio work, and concurrently, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London mounted a his first solo museum exhibition, Dark Mirror. In 2016, the J. Paul Getty Museum opened a solo exhibition of his large-scale portrait and still-life photographs, which then traveled to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. In 2019, a survey exhibition will open at Fundación MAPFRE in Spain. Learoyd’s work is included in the collections of The Getty, Tate, Victoria & Albert Museum, Centre Pompidou, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Nelson-Atkins Museum, National Gallery of Canada, and Yale University Art Gallery, among others. Source: Fraenkel Gallery
Filippo Venturi
Filippo Venturi is an Italian documentary photographer working on editorial, corporate, commercial assignments and personal projects. His works have been published in different newspapers and magazines such as The Washington Post, Financial Times, Vanity Fair, Internazionale, La Stampa, Geo, Marie Claire, Die Zeit, Gente, D di Repubblica, Io Donna/Corriere della Sera. He cooperates with several agencies in Italy and abroad for advertisement projects. He also pursues many personal stories and projects on the critical issues that he finds interesting. In 2016 his work, "Made in Korea" about South Korea, has been hosted at the Italian Center for Fine Art Photography in Bibbiena, at Modena's Foro Boario as New Talent selected by the Modena Foundation Photography, at Rome's Museum of Contemporary Art (MACRO) as selected Emerging Talent and at Somerset House in London by the Sony World Photography Awards. In 2017 he was the photographer sent by Vanity Fair in North Korea. In 2018 he is Testimonial Photographer for Fujifilm.I work as a multi-disciplinary photographic artist specialising in conceptual documentary and reportage Photography. I look at identity, displacement and the human condition. I also work as a photojournalist, documentary filmmaker and freelance commercial photographer.About Korean Dream Between 1905 and 1945 Korea was dominated by the Japanese, thus becoming a colony of the Empire. In 1945, after Japan's defeat, Korea was involved in the Cold War and became an object of interest for the USA, the URSS and lately for China as well. This brought to the division of the country in two along the 38th parallel and to the Korean War between 1950 and 1953. On the 27th of July of 1953, an armistice was signed but a declaration of peace never followed, leaving the country in a permanent state of conflict. North Korea is officially a socialist State with formal elections but in fact, it is a totalitarian dictatorship based on the cult of the Kim dynasty, practically an absolute monarchy. Since 1948 the country was ruled by Kim Il-Sung, the "Great Leader"; in 1994 his son, Kim Jong-II the "Dear Leader" succeeded him and until in 2011 Kim Jong-Un, his son, the "Brilliant Comrade" became Supreme Leader. North Korea is one of the most secluded countries in the world, we know little about it and the citizens' rights are subdued to the country's needs. Citizens have no freedom of speech, media are strictly controlled, you can travel only with authorization and it is not allowed to leave the country. The few foreign travellers who get the visa can travel the country only with authorized Korean guides, who have also the task of controlling, censoring and finding spies. Pyongyang, the capital, is the centre of all the resources and the country's ambition to boast a strong and modern façade (the rest of North Korea is composed of countryside, rice-fields and villages usually with no water, electricity or gas). The continuous and incessant propaganda against the USA portraits the South Korean population as a victim of the American invasion; young generations live in a constant alert state as if the USA could attack any day. At the same time, the propaganda aims at instilling a great sense of pride for the country's technical progression, fueled by the Supreme Leader and culminating in the atomic bomb and the subsequent tests. Pyongyang youngsters have been educated to be learned and knowledgeable people, especially in the scientific field, to foster the development of armaments and technology, chasing the dream of reuniting Korea in a whole and free state.
Miho Kajioka
Japan
1973
Miho Kajioka was born February 21st, 1973 in Japan and studied at Concordia University and the San Francisco Art institute in the 1990s. Kajioka's artistic practice is in principal snapshot based; she carries her camera everywhere and intuitively takes photos of whatever she finds interesting. These collected images serve as the basic material for her work in the darkroom where she creates her poetic and suggestive image-objects through elaborate, alternative printing methods. Kajioka regards herself more as a painter/drawer than as a photographer. She feels that photographic techniques help her to create works that fully express her artistic vision. Her images evoke a sense of mystery in her constant search for beauty. The focused, creative and respectful way in which she uses the medium of photography to create her works seems to fit in the tradition of Japanese art that is characterized by the specifically Japanese sense of beauty: wabi sabi. Wabi has been described as 'serene attention to simple things' and sabi as 'beauty acquired through the patina of time'. The artist regards herself as a maker of objects rather than a maker of photographs, using moments of her everday life as both inspiration and material. Source: Peter Fetterman Gallery Miho Kajioka (b. 1973, Japan, lives in Kyoto) studied fine art in the United States and Canada and started her career as a journalist in her native country Japan. It was after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that Kajioka was reconnected to her photographic art. Two months after the disaster, while reporting in the coastal city of Kamaishi, where over 800 people died, she found roses blooming beside a blasted building. That mixture of grace and ruin made her think of a Japanese poem: In the spring, cherry blossoms, In the summer the cuckoo, In autumn the moon, and in Winter the snow, clear, cold. Written by the Zen monk Dogen, the poem describes the fleeting, fragile beauty of the changing seasons. The roses Kajioka saw in Kamaishi bloomed simply because it was spring. That beautiful and uncomplicated statement, made by roses in the midst of ruin, impressed her, and returned her to photography. The photos presented, span Kajioka's adulthood, including pictures she took while living abroad, as well as scenes she captured in Japan after the disaster. The little pictures of a flower, or a running boy, are scenes from daily life, as it is. These fragments of her life, from various periods and against changing backdrops, are not so different from each other, and the differences that remain aren't important. Happiness, sadness, beauty and tragedy only exist in our minds. Things are just as they are. Since 2013 Kajioka's work has been exhibited in France, the Netherlands, Colombia, the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany and Spain. Source: IBASHO Exhibitions 2020 tanzaku, The Photographers' Gallery Print Sales (February 7 to March 22) 2019 time travel (duo exhibition with Rens Horn), de ketelfactory, Schiedam, the Netherlands (September 28 to December 22) And, where did the peacocks go?, International Photo Festival InCadaqués, Cadaqués, Spain (September 20 to 29) And, where did the peacocks go?, Kunstenfestival Watou, Watou, Belgium (June 29 to September 1) 2018 (all solo) So it goes, IBASHO Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium (September 9 to November 4, 2018) So it goes, Caroline O'Breen Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherland (September 8 to October 13, 2018) Half a dozen, Residency Program, Lisbon, Portugal (May 24 to August 31, 2018) Unfinished spaces, The Photographers' Gallery, Print Sales, London, UK (Feb 23 to April 14) 2017 And, where did the peacocks go?, Corden Potts Gallery, San Francisco, US (March 23 to April 29) 2016 And, where did the peacocks go?, Galerie VU', Paris, France (June 8 to September 2 – Solo) Et, où les paons sont-ils allés?, Festival La Gacilly Photo, France (June 3 to September 30) Grace and Ruin, SeeLevel Gallery, Amsterdam, Netherland And, where did the peacocks go?, Central Colombo Americano, Bogota, Colombia 2015 Renaissance Photography Prize, Getty Images Gallery, London, UK (Group) And, did the peacocks go?, ARTBO, Bogota, Colombia (Solo) And, where did the peacocks go?, Twenty 14 Contemporary, Milan, Italy (Solo) UNREAL, M2 Gallery, Sydney, Australia (Group) 2014 LAYERS, Microprisma, Rome, Italy (Solo) as it is, Fotografika Galerie, Gland, Switzerland (Solo) Balade(s) Parcours Photographique, Galerie Le Neuf, Lodève, France (Group) Boutographies, Montpellier, France (Group) Catching tails, Linke, Milan, (Group) 2013 As It is, Centro Italiano della Fotografia d'Autore, Bibbiena, Italy (Group) Reality and Emotion, Valid Foto BCN Gallery, Barcelona (Group) Galleries IBASHO, Antwerp, Belgium The Photographers' Gallery, Print Sales, London, United Kingdom Galerie Caroline o'Breen, Amsterdam, the Netherlands Ira Stehmann Fine Art, Munich, Germany Bildhalle, Zürich, Swizterland Polka Galerie, Paris, France Twenty14 Contemporary, Milan, Italy Peter Fetterman Gallery, Santa Monica, United States
Hugo Thomassen
Netherlands
1972
Shadow of Truth In his search for shadow, Hugo Thomassen found light. It is not the play of light that intrigues, but the richness of shadow. The bottles are what they are, yet they inadvertently evoke associations. Are we looking at a nocturnal cityscape with figures? Are we witnessing a chance encounter, a moment frozen in time, or simply an elegant composition with one or more bottles as the photographic subject? The bottle as a shape. In actual fact, the bottle has been constructed down in minute detail. Although the associations may suggest coincidence, the composition itself makes no such assumption. After all, it was built layer by layer. Painstakingly so. It is rich in its simplicity. No expense is spared. Each line is deliberate, considered. So much is expressed through so little. Without warning, this piece sends you soaring into the void - at least it had that effect on me. The void in which there is no time, and the severity of silence reigns. From a compositional standpoint, you have no reference point for space and time. As such, you go on your instincts and create a story yourself. Or you experience it in a meditative sense. What am I feeling? Is it abandonment, bottomless loneliness? Or am I experiencing silence, light, and intimacy? The image is poetic, still, melancholy, and harmonious. Reassurance emanates from the strict imposition of order. Coincidence is out of the question. The meaning of the work is hidden in the order that it projects. The interplay of lines formed by light and shadows never becomes a labyrinth, instead forming a guide pointing out the right direction. The photo has a reassuring effect on me which does not indicate a lack of thought. It makes me wander off in my mind’s eye while deciding my own perspective. This piece puts me outside of time. I can find no links to a memory, something which photography usually excels at. The image is new, though I believe I see a shade of art history through which the influence of Giorgio de Chirico, Morandi, and Night Shadows by Edward Hopper subtly shine through. The photograph distils the bottle to its purest form. It lays bare its essence. An idea. Is it truth that we see? Reality being exposed? Or are these simply shadows created by shapes? It is this that Thomassen plays with. Is it a single photograph or a picture composed of several images, a multitude of shots? In a sense, the photographic image is attempting to transcend the flatness of the paper. Photography is the means by which Thomassen explores the world. He exposes order in chaos or reveals an event through an ordering. He is the author of a visual story. His work is a narrative without words. It is excitement without something taking place. It represents an ode to emptiness, silence, and form. The bottle as the bearer of meaning. Everything has been translated into a language that one does not necessarily need to understand, but that one feels. He finds beauty in the composition of things, of objects. Naturally, a bottle is just a bottle, but in a composition and in relation to other bottles, by sheer coincidence a story is created. Thomassen brings light and shadow as nuances to that composition. He does not impose hierarchy onto the image. The background, the negative space, is just as important as the bottle. This piece is so streamlined that there are no secondary subjects. Light and shadow are of equal importance, because they need one another. Hugo Thomassen provides a context to the bottles. It is up to the viewer to make a story out of them - or not, of course. Because what is simply a charming image to one may appear to another as a story about existence and appearances. Ludo Diels
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