Photo-catharsis by Leif Sandberg

So much has been said about Leif Sandberg‘s project Ending that words fail me. Still, the quality of his work and the importance it has for those, like me, who embrace photography both as a means of artistic expression, but also as a therapeutic tool, brought me here.  At Lenscratch, Aline chooses to stick to…

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Love as muscle

In an interview conducted by Heather Davis & Paige Sarlin and published on No More Potlucks, Michael Hardt invokes Spinoza to explain love. There, he states: When I get confused about love, or other things in the world, thinking about Spinozian definitions often helps me because of their clarity. Spinoza defines love as the increase…

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SHE and ‘the nude’

Being a teacher is an everyday learning experience. We’re challenged in very different ways: either because we need to learn how to teach, either because we need to find ways to potentiate their vision. They trust us and that’s a huge responsibility. When I started at it, 6 years ago, I struggled to find my place, but students…

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Cha Cha, Bang Bang

I’ve been meaning to watch this for some time, but was lacking the courage, until today. I knew I would be troubled and conflicted about the project, so I was struggling to decide whether I should even see it, to begin with. A friend’s description of the movie was what made me sit still, for…

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Photography and Feminism (here we go again)

If there’s one thing different kinds of feminism can agree upon is their will to “empower women”. But, that’s it; once we get started on the meaning of that “empowerment” the apparent cohesion starts to fall apart. Some co-called feminists think about themselves in such a way because they applaud and promote women’s confidence towards their…

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I once wished I was a man

Yesterday was a special date for all women out there. It’s not a day to celebrate, but to remember where our ancestors once were and how we still need to be active and assume our daily battles in a men’s world. In very different measures, but a bit all over the world, women have to fight…

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A different kind of moonlight

I’m just another lover of the art of moving pictures, so the Oscars, being about the movie industry, are usually not a place to look for references. Yet, I’m always aware, and I end up finding one or two things worth watching (usually the documentaries). This year, things couldn’t be weirder. Not only is Moonlight an originally brave movie,…

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WPP 2017 (our best)

These are clearly not the most extraordinary photographs from the competition, yet in my opinion they stand out because instead of portraying the worst about humanity (our profound hatred of the Other, our fear of change, our disrespect for nature, the war, the war, the war, the killing, the killing, the killing), they show our…

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Max Pinckers’ quest for style

Somehow Max Pinckers‘ work has never excited me much. I though it was too neat, too contrived, too pretty, too arranged, too controlled… After coming across a feature of Magnum Photos Now about Finding Your Documentary Photography Style and reading the words he chose to describe his approach to documentary photography, I went back to some…

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Representing mental illness

Note: if you don’t want to get personal, just don’t read this. Mental health issues are always difficult to approach, be it in sociological or artistic terms. Both as a student and as a teacher, not a year goes by without crossing paths with photographic narratives that aim at questioning the stigma befalling the mental health…

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A new pair of eyes

Extreme fatigue can change your perspective on things, but so can euphoria and melancholia. I guess our perception on what is or is not part of our conceptualized reality is heavily influenced by our biological and psychological conditions. Having said that, most of the so called altered states of perception tend to be transient, not…

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New blood (part II)

Benjamin Freedman Statement about the project: In November 2014 I began a two month residency in northern Iceland where I became interested in the countries unique topographic features. Its low mountains and fascinating geological specimens inspired this sci-fi photo book that is meant to playfully illustrate a fictional story about a lunar phenomenon taking place…

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How authenticity came to be mistaken for spontaneity

One Paula Riebschläger writes about photographer Arnaud Ele‘s work: Far away from orchestrated photo shoots, Ele’s pictures are filled with authenticity expressed in pictures of dreamy landscapes and intimate portraits. He graduated from film school in Geneva and was recently commissioned by Urban Outfitters to create an ad campaign. Although, Ele is already a successful…

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Imagine you’re a tree

Temporary Trees is a collaboration between Make a Forest (founded by Joanna van der Zanden and Anne van der Zwaag), Raw Color (design studio by Daniera ter Haar and Christoph Brach) and Maarten Kolk & Guus Kusters‘ studio. This series was presented during Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven in 2011. More about Temporary Trees and Raw Color here.

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New blood (part I)

Richard Gosnold Statement about the project: ‘Voices’ conveys a tale of traumatic events, questioning how the perception of reality, for a mentally ill person, is influenced by past experiences. Based on the theory that we invent reality to suit our emotional state, I have considered how photographs may be viewed, re-contextualized and reconstructed, to fit…

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We don’t understand why these foreigners take photographs

In Culture and Authenticity (2008), discussing the semiotics of tourism and authenticity, Charles Lindholm talks about the sexual tourist who ventures “seeking out forbidden pleasures in foreign locales”, hoping to “discover his or her own natural uncivilized being” (p. 42). As Lindholm suggests, that sexual tourists who goes to Thailand, for instances, looking to have…

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L’enfer, c’est les autres

L’enfer, cést les autres, Sartre’s famous exclamation in Huis Clos, it’s one of those sentences that in itself encloses a wide reflection about how human beings think about themselves. I am often reminded of the dictum when someone or something really gets one my nerves. I’m aware that when someone messes with my well-being the…

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Stella Bach: ‘Meditations in an emergency’

© Stella Bach, Untitled, from the project Meditations in an Emergency. © Stella Bach, Untitled, from the project Meditations in an Emergency. © Stella Bach, Untitled, from the project Meditations in an Emergency. © Stella Bach, Untitled, from the project Meditations in an Emergency. © Stella Bach, Untitled, from the project Meditations in an Emergency.…

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Death in magenta

Richard Mosse’s color infrared photographs of the Democratic Republic of the Congo have traveled the world. Their impact is undeniable. Their red-magenta dye have made us look at this never-ending war again, and again, and again. Should we dare say with a different look, as many critics have? What is the “normal” way of looking…

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The authentic artist

“The authentic artist doesn’t exist outside the artwork. The authentic artist enters the artwork and he stays inside, in the path it [the artwork] opens. The authentic artist doesn’t separate from the work, he has no identity as an artist. We cannot enter the artwork and disappear, but we must know the artist has entered…

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What is style?

I miss the sort of stable relationship I used to have with nihilsentimentalgia. I love it here, but doing a doctorate has managed to mess with everything that’s dear to me. My closest family is still tolerating the commitment-turned-obsession, but I myself am close to reaching the point of not being able to hear me…

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From image to icon (in 1988)

Once again inspired by Emmanuel Taïeb I went back in time because of a documentary – Milli Vanilli : du hit à la honte, directed by Oliver Schwehm – that tells the story of an European boys band that hit the American charts in 1988, rapidly falling into tragedy. The short story is that Milli…

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