The Producer’s picks for this week’s news relevant to the photography, art, design and production industries:
1) The Greatest Advice for Creatives I've Ever Heard (Ira Glass on the Creative Process)
Where once information and advice was sparse, it's now abundant. With that come sits own problems in identifying that which is worth retaining, and that which is worth discarding. This is the greatest advice for up-and-coming creatives I've ever heard.
Some years back, when I had finished my MRes and decided against a PhD, I had to either proverbially defecate or get off the latrine when it came to a career in photography. I had earned a little money from it — albeit not a lot — and flirted with the idea of going out on my own and trying to make a career doing what I loved. I was faced with one of the most unhelpful false dichotomies I've encountered. On the one hand (and these hands were no where near equal, this hand was gargantuan and the other was like a tiny claw) I was told that photographers don't make any money. That there are far too many as it is, and the work is underpaid and rare. That everyone is a photographer these days and so professional photography will die out.
2) Inspiration: 20 of Our Favorite Women Photographers for 2019
“Just 20” we thought to ourselves when putting this list of women photographers together. “It’s going to be so hard to not go over that number!.” That’s because we know that the amount of female talent in our industry is almost endless. But we also know our readers have to find the time to eat and sleep too! So, with that in mind, we wanted to make a piece that focused on the best of the best – in our humble (and experienced) opinion. With Women’s History Month being
All the photographers in this article have been featured on The Phoblographer before, hence why we’re extremely confident in their creative capabilities. You’re also encouraged to check out each of their individual features too.
3) Style as Women's Freedom: The Photographs of Ulrike Ottinger
The modern cinema of the sixties and beyond is a photographic cinema, recalling the highly inflected images of silent movies in order to affirm the personal touch, the omnipresence of the filmmaker as more than an unobtrusive transmitter of reality or mere stager of the script. The German director Ulrike Ottinger, one of the crucial modern filmmakers (and unfortunately one of the least-known), is also an exemplary photographic creator, as seen in the selection of her still photographs that are on display, until March 3, at Bridget Donahue, and in her movies (from which most of the images are taken)—particularly two that she’ll be presenting at Metrograph in the next few days, “Johanna d’Arc of Mongolia” (1989) and “Ticket of No Return” (1979).
4) Women Are Written into Online Art History at Expanded Wikipedia Edit-A-Thons Across Southern California
If you have ever been annoyed by the fact that some minor Star Trek characters have substantial Wikipedia entries while some major women artists do not, you have noticed the dramatic gender gap on the popular crowd-sourced website—where over 85% of contributors are men. Enter Art+Feminism, a global group founded in 2014 to try to close that gap with edit-a-thons where volunteers can learn how to write and post entries. This month, Los Angeles will be an epicenter of this activity, with not just one session at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (Lacma) as usual, but six events, across six institutions in Southern California.
“We reached out to museums in communities where we haven’t been before, like the Vincent Price Art Museum, to create more opportunities for people to show up,” says Stacey Allan, the West Coast “ambassador” for the programme and editor of the online magazine East of Borneo. “Maybe you can’t make it one weekend but can make it next.”
5) In Remembrance: Bisi Silva Changed the Way We See African Photography
When the time comes to reflect on the titans who shaped the course of photographic practice in Africa during the early twenty-first century, the name Bisi Silva, who died last week in Lagos, will be writ large, emphasized in bold. Over more than twenty-five years in the field of contemporary art and photography, her remarkable vision and indefatigable spirit instigated tectonic shifts in editorial, curatorial, and institutional frameworks in Nigeria and across the African continent. A curator trained at the Royal College of Art in London, and a contributor to publications including Artforum, Third Text, and Art Africa, Silva responded to the flows of the global, but was ultimately grounded in a granular treatment of the local, which she defined as “an expanded field of practice and engagement.” Situating her curatorial practice within Nigeria, Silva founded the nimble, impactful organization that is the Centre for Contemporary Art (CCA) Lagos in 2007, which provides a platform for the development, presentation, and discussion of visual art and culture. Her CCA Lagos exhibitions included Democrazy (2007–8), Lucy Azubuike and Zanele Muholi: Like a Virgin (2009), and Kelani Abass: If I Could Save Time (2016–17), among many others.
6) PDN's 30 for 2019
We published our first PDN’s 30 issue 20 years ago. Despite significant changes in the markets for editorial, commercial and fine-art photography, a lot of things have stayed the same. As we look through hundreds of portfolios of photographers recommended to us by editors, creatives, curators and some of the leading voices in professional photography, we are still drawn to striking images, unique stories, original perspectives and a consistent vision.
The digital age and the economic pressures that have reshaped our media and culture make it tempting to lament the good old days of the photo industry. But building a photography career was never easy, and the photography industry of old had significant flaws, particularly in its attention to and support for diverse perspectives. The challenges are just different now, as are the ways photographers meet those challenges, and there’s a lot to learn from the stories of these 30 photographers.