Venice, 1966. During the 33rd edition of the Biennale, there’s alsoYayoi Kusama with an installation – Narcissus Garden – part of an unofficial performance: in a sea of reflecting plastic spheres, the artist stand in the middle with a sign that offered for sale the narcissism of the visitor. Who can’t break himself/herself from their own reflected image could buy the sphere for 2 dollars each.
Back to our days, that same installation is now arrived in New York, precisely in an old train garage in Fort Tilden, where it will stay until September 3rd during the Rockaway! 2018 free public art festival. Kusama standing in the middle with a sign is not there, for obvious reasons, even if today more than ever the message of the artistic work is more obvious: our ego has become so much important and it has to be busted out first in social media, then in real life. The fact that the 1500 spheres are made not of plastic but of metal helps and this time the visitor not only sees his/her beauty reflected but also the graffiti and the environment where the installation is and that carries in an evident way the signs of Hurricane Sandy.
So if you’re in New York and a selfie in the Big Apple is not enough, one of the creations of Yayoi Kusama is more than happy to be lived and Instagrammed too.
There are images that, more than others, manage to tell what is happening in the world. Some have become emblematic, are included in school books and are part of the cultural heritage of each of us. These are the shots taken by photojournalists, reporters who, thanks to a passion comparable to a vocation, have for years been bearing witness to wars, political and social changes, inequalities and the violation of human rights. It is by looking at their work that we fully understand the power of photography, which goes where no other medium can go, touching us to the core.
IMP 2021- International Festival of Photojournalism
4 – 27 JUN
To underline the importance of photojournalists, especially at a time when communication passes especially through images, the first edition of IMP, the International Festival of Photojournalism, was held in Padua in 2019. In the wake of its success, the Culture Department of the City of Padua and the University of Padua have been working on the second edition of the event, which opened last week and will remain open to the public until Sunday 27 June.
“The idea behind the IMP Festival is the conviction that photojournalism today is the quickest access to stories and international debates capable of connecting the four corners of the world, a way of making everyone aware of their fundamental role even in the most controversial and geographically distant issues.” – RICCARDO BONONI, Photojournalist and Artistic Director of IMP
The works of 30 international authors will be exhibited in the city’s most prestigious museums and, in order to learn more about their work, the festival programme also includes a series of workshops, readings and meetings with guests such as journalist Domenico Quirico, who survived a five-month kidnapping in Syria.
One of the main exhibitions will be the MAGNUM Photos exhibition, featuring the work of some of the world’s most renowned photojournalists, from Miguel Candela, who shot the latest protests in Hong Kong, to the famous Italian photographer Tony Gentile, author of the portrait of Falcone and Borsellino.
The IMP also gives space to young talent by presenting an exhibition of some of the year’s best work.
“We are proud to reaffirm, also in 2021, Padua as the international capital of auteur photojournalism, through a festival that already in its first editions has become an essential reference point for professionals and enthusiasts.” – ANDREA COLASIO, Councillor for Culture of the Municipality of Padua
See below some shots of the photojournalists on show and visit the IMP website for all the details.
The first thing that impressed us about Kamonwan Norralak was her age. The Thai photographer is only 19 years old, yet she has already defined her style and is always trying something new.
As is often the case, Kamonwan Norralak started taking pictures at the age of 15 almost by accident, taking pictures with her mobile phone or photographing her favourite band at a concert. But the more time passed, the more her passion grew, so much so that she forgot her dream of becoming a designer or architect.
Her work, her approach and her subjects have changed a lot over the years, and three projects that she herself talked about are proof of this. The first, which she took two years ago, is the most conceptual and focuses on food. In what could be an exercise in style, Kamonwan has rethought food, imagining certain foods out of their ordinary guise and creating surreal images.
With the second project, “Friends”, Kamonwan focused her lens on one of her friends, proving that you don’t have to be a model to be the star of a photo shoot that gets right to the viewer.
The last one, entitled “Reverse”, is the project the photographer presented for her graduation. In these shots in which the focus is all on the subject and the black backdrop that seems to swallow him up, Kamonwan wants to tell us that in her opinion what we show to others is nothing more than a reflection of who we really are.
If you are curious about Kamonwan Norralak’s upcoming photographic projects, follow her on Instagram and check out a selection of her shots below.
They could be frames from a film or photographs from a personal diary from the 1980s. Tamara Lichtenstein‘s analog shots enclose a timeless beauty that never tires.
Originally from Bolivia, Tamara lives in Hudston, Texas, and started taking pictures when she was still a little girl, when her mother gave her a camera and decided to put all her creativity into the shots she took.
Today Tamara Lichtenstein’s name is internationally recognized and, in addition to collaborating with different brands and clients, she has realized several personal projects that have literally captured our attention and our hearts.
At the center of Tamara’s artistic research we can surely find the female universe and its facets: leafing through her shots we meet faces and bodies without filters, wrapped in their natural beauty.
The grain and style of analog photography combined with the perfect use of light and the effects of double exposure, a recurring technique in Tamara’s shots, give the photographs a cinematographic style that is impossible to forget.
Below you can find a selection of the shots, but to find out more visit Tamara Lichtenstein’s website and Instagram profile.