Thursday, 14 August 2008

Street & Studio

Andreas Serrano © from the series Nomads

Street & Studio is an exhibition of international photography at the Tate Modern London. The exhibition includes a collection of of photographic portraiture taken on the street or in the studio. Over 350 works are gathered in this exhibition, by some of the world’s most famous and important photographers including Francis Alÿs, Diane Arbus, Cecil Beaton, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Rineke Dijkstra, Jacques Henri Lartigue, Robert Mapplethorpe, Irving Penn, Norman Parkinson, August Sander, Cindy Sherman, Malick Sidibé, Paul Strand, James Van der Zee, Juergen Teller and Wolfgang Tillmans.

Lee To Sang ©, Photo Studio Amsterdam

By Adrian Searle from The Guardian

Portraiture is the key to Tate Modern's new photography exhibition, Street & Studio. The show's subject, over and above the medium and conventions of photography, is really ourselves, in a multitude of guises.
Grace Kelly jumps in the air for Philippe Halsman's camera in 1955. Weegee jumped, and so did Marilyn, and now they're suspended forever. David Bailey throws himself to the floor to photograph Veruschka, while Bert Stern nabs them both in an arty 1960s image. Last year South African photographer Pieter Hugo shot Nigerian Abdullahi Mohammed beneath an elevated section of highway in Lagos. Abdullahi holds a muzzled hyena on a chain. The moment is full of power and danger. Caught on camera, a well-groomed lawyer on the corner of West 41st Street totes his laundry and eyes Joel Sternfeld warily in 1988. The world feels full.
From beginning to end of this compendious and not altogether successful show, like a kind of insistent background din, is the roar of the city. You can hear it above the silence of the images themselves - in the clatter of a Paris street in the rain by Alfred Stieglitz, in the footsteps of commuters heading for work in Paul Strand's 1915 Wall Street, in the drunken shouts and murmurs of Boris Mikhailov's alcoholics. The exhibition calls itself an urban history of photography, and it takes us from mid-19th century Paris and London to present-day Shanghai and Mexico City. In many respects, it covers familiar territory: histories of photography are 10 a penny. Some of the work here just feels unnecessary. More here

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