Friday Inspiration: Gerry Johansson

Bridgeport, Nebraska: Gerry Johansson

I’ve been enjoying finding photographers that are new to me and exploring their work. I recently came across Gerry Johansson, a Swedish photographer known for his black and white photographs of what would otherwise be unremarkable places.

Gerry has a ‘geographic’ focus have produced books of work from photographs taken in America, Sweden, Germany, Antarctic and Tokyo. I like his thinking in that the book is really the tangible product of his work because exhibitions are too fleeting. Gone after a couple of weeks.

He clearly has a love of photography books as you can see in the video below of Gerry in his studio going through some of his photo book collection.

I wonder whether the books that he selected to discuss influenced his decision making about his own books which are often relatively small by some standards. I think that these smaller books, smaller prints and images call for a closer engagement with the work and for a more intimate experience.

Gerry talks about his work in the video below. The audio is in Swedish, if you don’t speak Swedish there are captions in English so that you can follow along with the conversation. Check out Gerry’s website here to learn more.

Friday Inspiration: Peter Schlör

schloer-reventon_2011

Any guesses where this photograph by German photographer Peter Schlör was taken? Any of my British friends recognize a popular summer holiday destination?

I recently came across Peter Schlör’s book ‘Black and Wide‘, a collection of very moody black and white photographs that if you’d told me were of the Pacific Northwest I would have believed you. But no, they were taken on the Canary Islands. I couldn’t believe it. When I think of the Canary Islands I think of it as a summer destination, the ocean, blue skies & bright colors. What you’ll find in these pages are images with very dark shadows, trees, fog and low clouds. It’s an amazing transformation. I’m looking forward to finding out more about Peter’s work.

I was pleased to find the video below of Peter and the team getting ready for an exhibit of the Black and Wide images but very disappointed to find out that it was all in German. Anyone able to help out with a translation?

In any case, it was interesting to see how the images were prepared for exhibition. This is one of the things that you miss out on when looking at images in a book, the scale of the final prints. It was interesting to see what an eclectic mix of sizes and presentation styles that were used and it makes me wonder why he made the choices he made. Worth a look even if you don’t speak German!

Friday Inspiration: Gerhard Richter

I’ve been taking a deep dive into the world of a couple of different painters over the Christmas holiday. The first that I wanted to share here was Gerhard Richter. For much of Richter’s early work he used photographs as source material. Many of these source photographs can be seen in Richter’s scrapbook of source material The Atlas. Some of these paintings are remarkably realistic. I must admit however that I like his abstracts much more. These are large scale paintings made with a tool of his own design. Click here to see a documentary that shows Richter talking about his photographs and at work making some of these large abstracts.