Photographic Dreams Of Africa And Space Travel

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Cristina De Middel brings a striking beauty to space travel in her series The Afronauts.  Her series is based on the aspirations of Edward Makuka Nkoloso – a 1960′s Zambian school teacher who wanted to land his countrymen on the moon before the United States or the Soviet Union.  Nkoloso was openly mocked, even by journalists.  Through his story, the series’ pleasant imagery gives way to more serious underpinnings.  De Middel says:

“The images are beautiful and the story is pleasant at a first level, but it is built on the fact that nobody believes that Africa will ever reach the moon. It hides a very subtle critique to our position towards the whole continent and our prejudices.”

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The Impressive Impressions Of Scout Paré-Phillips (NSFW)

Scout Paré-Phillips is an artist and musician based out of Chelsea, New York, and Baltimore, Maryland. In this fabulous and rather erotic series of photographs, the artist removes the model’s clothing leaving us with fleshy tones and only impressions. The imagination is allowed to run wild with the before and the after.  (via)

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Christopher Jonassen’s Planet-Like Pots

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Photographer Chistopher Jonassen‘s series Devour seems cosmic in origin.  They appear to be photographs of planets mottled by millions of years of meteorite impacts and scarred by geological forces.  In reality the series depicts the bottoms of pots.  The worn metal is burnt, scratched, and often just old.  Devour illustrates the destruction, even violence, inherent in eating and nourishment.  On his website Jonassen precedes the series with a quote from philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre: “To eat is to appropriate by destruction.”

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Existential Before And After Portraits From Ana Oliveira

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Photographer Ana Oliveira‘s Identities II is a touching series of portraits.  She begins with old photographs of her subjects and through similar lighting, clothing, and poses she creates a parallel photograph.  As much as sixty years lies between some of the older and newer portraits.  The two portraits arranged side by side become a sort of existential before and after.  I find myself imagining what took place in the decades between the two photographs, evidence of something in the now more pronounced lines in each sitters face.  Its difficult not to envision expressions of expectation in the younger portraits, and mixtures of disappointment or content in their older counterparts.

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Alma Haser’s Origami Portraits

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Photographer Alma Haser has often incorporated origami into her work.  However, in her series Cosmic Surgery the origami is brought to the forefront.  For the Cosmic Surgery Haser photographs a series of portraits.  She next makes multiple prints of the portraits and folds them into complex origami objects.  The origami pieces are placed back into the portrait and a photograph is taken of the final composition.  Haser mixes the meditative nature of origami and transposes it onto the face of her subject, somehow injecting simple portraits with an esoteric atmosphere.

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The Shrouded Drawings of Evie Woltil Richner

Evie Woltil Richner is a Florida based artist. She combines personal family photographs with feathery shroud like drawings creating a beautiful monument to memorialize family members that have passed on.

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Antonia Basler’s Surreal Photoshopped Family Photos

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Photographer Antonia Basler‘s series Content Aware makes use of a Photoshop tool of the same name.  The content aware tool is used to erase objects from images and replace the space with content the program judges to be appropriate.  Basler’s series begins with old family photos.  She’s highlighted the faces of the photo’s subjects and applied the tool, then highlighted the inverse and applied the tool for a second image.  The resulting images are a cyber sort of surreal, like a creepy reality glitch.  [via]

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Toy Stories – Children With Their Most Prized Possessions

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Photographer Gabriele Galinberti‘s series Toy Stories is a simple concept revealing a complex story.  Over the course of 18 months the artist photographed children throughout the world with their most prized possessions.  He would often play with the toys along with the children prior to arranging them for the photographs.  It is surprising how much the toys can reveal about each child.  Often children would prize toys that reflected the occupations of their parents – a large collection of cars for the son of a taxi driver or rakes and shovels for the daughter of a farmer.  Also, Galinberti relates that poorer children’s play focused more on friends and activities rather than possessions.  He says:

“The richest children were more possessive. At the beginning, they wouldn’t want me to touch their toys, and I would need more time before they would let me play with them.  In poor countries, it was much easier. Even if they only had two or three toys, they didn’t really care. In Africa, the kids would mostly play with their friends outside.”

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