DOCUMENTARY // HOMME LESS, The Mark Reay Story

A wonderful documentary about chance and circumstance. A enjoyable thought provoking journey into the daily life of Mark Reay, Photographer, Model, Actor and Homeless…

HOMME LESS is about the underbelly of the American Dream, the hidden backyard of our society. Mark’s life stands as a metaphor for the struggle of the vanishing middle class in America. But it’s also a film about the relationship between New York City and one of its residents. New York is not simply a beautiful backdrop for this story. She’s the antagonist that dictates the direction M’s life is going in. The joy and pain, the love and hate, the success and denial New York is teasing him with, the hardship he is going through in order to stay in her grace and the inventiveness he comes up with to be with her are all unique. Mark walks the streets of Manhattan looking like a millionaire, wearing designer suits and expensive leather shoes. He seems to be well off, and works in the prestigious fashion and movie business. He is eloquent, charming and good looking, and obviously has a lot going for him. But while during the day he pursues a ‘normal’ life, late at night he goes to a place where the American Dream has turned into a nightmare.

downloada.png

HOMME LESS captures a raw and unfiltered moment in time, our time. Like its title HOMME LESS has different layers and raises the question of how far are we from losing everything, even our homes, and with it a part of our dignity and humanity? How often do we have to pretend that everything is in fine order to keep up the facade of being a well-off member of society? And how far are we prepared to go to take the financial pressure off our shoulders to live a more carefree live, the live that we want to live? What went wrong in Mark’s life? How is he able to keep up his facade of success and fool everyone? What keeps him from going under? What motivates him to put up with this rather unthinkable situation? What were and are his hopes and desires in life? Mark stands lost and alone in the midst of eight million dreams, balanced between the glamorous surfaces of this vibrant and inspiring city and its far from glamorous hidden backyard. He is the Homme Less.

PURCHASE| WATCH SBS

INTERVIEW // Photographer Iain Sarjeant

By Grant Scott

unknown.jpeg

Iain Sarjeant is a photographer based in the Highlands of Scotland who founded the Another Place Press as a small independent publisher to showcase contemporary landscape photography. To date he has published nine books that explore landscape covering themes documenting the land, place, journey, city and environment from the remotest corners of the globe to the centre of the largest cities. It’s an ambitious premise and even more so as the imprint consists of just one employee. Iain is that employee and his responsibilities include all aspects of publishing the books, running the blog, all social media and continuing to work as a commissioned photographer as well as progressing his personal projects. Despite this he spared sometime to talk with Grant Scott about the current independent publishing landscape and his personal experiences in establishing his own publishing company.

Grant: I hear and read a lot of discussion amongst photographers about photobooks but very little about publishing, which is something we are all doing every day even if we are not aware of it. Every time we write a tweet or post on Facebook or Instagram we are publishing, but the art and complexity of publishing is rarely understood. I’m also not sure if photographers are comfortable with being referred to as publishers.
Iain: It’s become relatively easy to produce a photobook which is exciting, but I think there is a need to think through the process carefully, in particular how to sell decent quantities of a book, if that is the goal. In many ways, the marketing and selling is the most challenging part of the process. I have a background in graphic design and a knowledge of the print and design process – I am comfortable handling everything in-house and have decent connections with printers, but I’m no publishing expert. Another Place Press developed out of the Another Place blog, which I started a few years ago, and right from the start I hoped that it would develop into a publishing project. I was inspired by small publishers such as The Velvet Cell www.thevelvetcell.com, I loved what they do – Eanna has a real eye for design. I also feel design is very important – of course a book needs a strong series of photographs that work well, but you cannot underestimate the importance of design.

Grant: There seems to be a strong collaborative sense amongst independent publishers.
Iain: Absolutely, Eanna, the founder of The Velvet Cell was very supportive in helping me establish Another Place even though I could be seen as a potential competitor. Craig Atkinson at Café Royal is producing great books and I know Al Palmer at Brown Owl Press, but there are not that many publishers releasing the kind of small books we are producing. I started with small books partly for financial reasons, but I do like their size – good quality small books produced at a reasonable price that everyone can afford. I very much like the idea of them being affordable, accessible to all.

READ & SEE MORE

Source (https://unitednationsofphotography.com)

PHOTOGRAPHER // Adrien Blondel

 I work predominantly with the photographic medium, and recently with analog photography almost exclusively. The analog process has been a great source of learning to me,  and I find it has a certain depth, a weight, that digital images don’t carry in the same way.  Adrien Blondel
Adrien-Blondel_0.jpg

It is a common thing to think about the bedroom in which one grew up, scattered memories of a time cherished or loathed, but essential, the private space of self-development.

Most people move out and away from their childhood room, and seldom keep a link to this space, other than in their memory or photographs, where space itself is often just the background.

For some, the room has barely changed since they lived in it, and it is as if the memories settled, like dust, the room remains suspended in time, a personal museum. For others, the room has been entirely remodeled, keeping almost no traces of the memories evoked.

This series is a playful attempt at reversing the concept of photography as the representation of something that is no longer, by presenting people’s memory of their childhood bedroom, collected as an interview, with a photograph of what the room is now, creating an image that contradicts the memories evoked, and the visualization that comes from hearing them. The photographs were taken after the interview, in the hope that, consciously or not, the image will reflect on the memories that were evoked, and point at how a human presence in a place possibly leaves it changed. This process tries to acknowledge the layers present in a room, the never-ending creation of memories linked to a given space and the multitudes that pass through it, and maybe the sum of all of those memories tells us about the essence of a space. 

WEBSITE

INTERVIEW // Photographer Yukio Uchida

xt1a1497.jpg

Over the last few years, Fujifilm has invited professional photographers from around the world to meet with the product planning and R&D teams to discuss current and future products. Names you may or may not have heard of such as Zack Arias, David Hobby, Bert Stephani, Kevin Mullins, Gianluca Colla, Tomasz Lazar, Damien Lovegrove, Knut Koivisto, Chris Weston and more have all given their feedback and input into the “kai-zen” development mentality of the Fujifilm X system.

However, this process has actually been going on for longer than that.

Earlier in the year I was lucky enough to meet with Yukio Uchida, a famous professional photographer from Japan who had been speaking about Fujifilm cameras at the CP+ show in Yokohama. Yukio was one of the world’s first “X-Photographers”; his feedback has been instrumental in the development of the Fujifilm X system. I was able to get 10 minutes of his time to ask him a few questions about his involvement with Fujifilm R&D, and also his own photographic style.

MH: Thank you for taking some time meet me and talk about you and your photography.
Is this your first time presenting at CP+?

YU: No, this is my fourth year. Every year it gets better than previous. Four years ago very few people used X series but over time the amount of users has increased, and also the amount of people that come to watch me speak has increased.

READ& SEE MORE

Source (https://fujifilm-blog.com)

PHOTOGRAPHER // Olivia Arthur

Interview by Helena Lee

Olivia Arthur is a British documentary photographer and member of the Magnum photography agency. Originally studying mathematics at Oxford University she later studied photojournalism at the London College of Printing. .. Wikipedea

Bazaar: What draws you to photojournalism?  

Olivia: It’s photography with more story telling. A single image can be amazing and dramatic. I started out shooting individual images for Cherwell [Oxford’s student newspaper], but I found I wanted to have more of a voice: to actually say something. I wanted to do something more personal over a long period of time, with more authorship.

Bazaar: What’s the story you are most proud of telling?

Olivia: Jeddah Diary is my first book, so I am proud of that. It was also the first time I’ve worked with both words and photographs successfully. Saudi Arabia is so conservative. At first there were photographs of women I took that I couldn’t publish – of women without their abayas [the cloak they must wear in public]. So I started writing out little anecdotes about things I couldn’t photograph and wove it in with a more obscure picture and called it “moments that got away”. I realised these worked as well as the photographs by themselves. There are a lot of photographers who feel the story is all in the photographs but I really believe in weaving in complementary words with the pictures.

READ & SEE MORE

WEBSITE | MAGNUM

Source (http://www.harpersbazaar.com

Interview // Photographer Mahtab Hussain

Interview by Nina Manandhar 

Nine years in the making, Mahtab Hussain‘s latest exhibition ‘You Get Me?’ is both a testimony to the amount of time required to create a body of work of this breadth but also to his own artistic commitment to a line of enquiry. What began as series of chance encounters on the streets of his hometown of Birmingham in 2008 evolved into a journey across the UK on a mission to create a fuller picture of what it means to be a British muslim working class man today.

Hussain sees his work as firmly rooted in a tradition of British portraiture, citing his time working at the National Portrait Gallery and his MA at Goldsmiths in Art History where he specialised in Post Colonial studies as equally influential in shaping his understanding of transformative possibilities in art, but also enabling him to experience first hand the lack of work reflecting the British – Asian experience. Seen together, they explain his drive to pursue projects which create a place for his subjects in visual history, to fill a gap where representation is either missing or a product of misinformation.

With his subjects now immortalised in an upcoming book published by Mack alongside the exhibition this May at Autograph ABP, his term long-term engagement with the community and empathy with his sitters has clearly paid off, ‘I don’t think work can be made any other way, it is about getting to know one another, sharing stories’ he tells me. Ahead of the show, we spoke to Hussain about the enduring power of fine art portraiture, masculinity in the 21st Century and the complex relationship between identity, heritage and displacement, themes which his work navigates.

The release for the exhibition describes the portraits as exploring the identity of young ‘Working class’ – rather than just ‘Asian’ men. Can you talk a little about the idea of ‘class’, ‘working class’ and why it’s an important factor in the work?

I believe class plays a critical role in understanding the work. In general, the working class communities of Britain have had to go through real change, essentially from the 80’s onwards which itself was an incredibly destructive time for British society as a whole. Margaret Thatcher and her government purposely broke down community and fostered the idea that there is no such thing as society, livelihoods were destroyed and the unions were dismantled. We were told we should embrace the individual in Britain and the self-made man and woman, which was in direct conflict with the working class concept of community, sisterhood, brotherhood and family. From a migrant perspective, this notion of individualism crushed one of the defining pillars of their culture too, one that advocated for a strong, supportive, collective society, so this era jarred with them considerably as they eventually experienced the same loss of community and society, alongside harbouring feelings of alienation.

READ & SEE MORE

Source (http://paper-journal.com)