┐ roots & fruits #9 – Miguel Godinho └

© Miguel Godinho, Untitled, from the series Esta é a minha família (This is my family), 2011

© Miguel Godinho, 38 years old (left) + 40 years old (right), from the series 16-06-1950, 2008

© Miguel Godinho, Untitled, from the series Family, 2005

© Miguel Godinho, Untitled (left + right), from the series Entre nós (Amongst us), 2010

Miguel Godinho’s (b. 1984) photography is not easy to describe, not because it is abstract, overly conceptualized or devoided of content, but because it is simple (albeit symbolic) and unpretentious.

Miguel’s body of work fluctuates between intimate moments and a sterile portrait (in the composition) of the world around him. The domestic scenes reveal some kind of obsession with the question of identity, dependent on family history and memory. On the other hand, the outdoor photographs accentuate the distance between nature/landscape and an environment built/invaded by man.

While the images vary from landscapes, portraits and still life, the empty spaces within the narrative allow us not only to understand the author’s personal journey as well as how it forms part of a sociological portrait of his country and its culture.

More of Miguel’s work here

┐ roots & fruits #7 – Inês Beja └

© Inês Beja, The Roaring

© Inês Beja, Untitled #3, from the series Jumping at Shadows

Inês is a chameleon or, as she puts it, a shape-shifter. From my point of view what she is now is a creative force: obsessive, eager to learn, aiming for the perfect tool, the perfect dress, the perfect light, the perfect shot. I believe these are arguments enough to keep an eye on her and see where all this passion (borderline destructive force?) can take her.

Her work made me think of a written piece of work, so instead of dragging on parallels between her work and that of self-portrayed women in the history of photography, here it is:

“(…)The initial idea that images contributed to women’s alienation from their bodies and from their sexuality, with an attendant hope of liberation and recuperation, gave way to theories of representation as symptom and signifier of the way problems posed by sexual difference under patriarchy could be displaced onto the feminine.(…)and while feminist critics turned to popular culture to analyse these meanings, artists turned to theory, juxtaposing images and ideas, to negate dominant meanings and,slowly and polemically, to invent different ones.

(…)The juxtaposition begins to refer to a ‘surface-ness’, so that nostalgia begins to dissolve into unease.An overinsistence on surface starts to suggest that it might be masking something or other that should be hidden from sight, and a hint of another space starts to lurk inside a too plausible facade.(…)The sense of surface now resides, not in the female figure’s attempt to save her face in a masquerade of femininity, but in the model’s subordination to, and imbrication with, the texture of the photographic medium itself.

(…)For Freud, fetishism is particularly significant (apart, that is, from his view that it ‘confirmed the castration complex’) as a demonstration that the psyche can sustain incompatible ideas, at one and the same time,through a process of disavowal. Fetishistic disavowal acknowledges the possibility of castration (represented by the female, penis-less, genital)and simultaneously denies it. Freud saw the coexistence of these two contradictory ideas, maintained in a single psyche, as a model for the ego’s relation to reality: the ‘splitting of the ego’, which allowed two parallel, but opposed, attitudes to be maintained in uneasy balance.(…) This ‘oscillation effect’ is important to postmodernism. The viewer looks, recognizes a style, doubts, does a double take, then recognizes that the style is a citation, and meanings shift and change their reference like shifting perceptions of perspective from an optical illusion.

excerpt from Laura Mulvey’s article A Phantasmagoria of the Female Body: The Work of Cindy Sherman

Inês’s portraits can be seen here

┐ roots & fruits #6 – Rui Dias Monteiro └

© Rui Dias Monteiro, Untitled, from Figure in the Landscape, 2011

© Rui Dias Monteiro, Untitled, from Caia Caía, 2011

© Rui Dias Monteiro, Untitled, from Figure in the Landscape, 2011

© Rui Dias Monteiro, Untitled, from O Sabor da Casca, 2009

More of Rui’s work here and here

┐ Lara Jacinto └

© Lara Jacinto, Untitled

© Lara Jacinto, Untitled

As far as the public eye goes, this is our (Portuguese) new emerging photographer. Her images, on the realm of the documentary, have a lot of presence; they reveal intimacy and good awareness of the surroundings. Although not having a strong conductor, I’ll dare to say the thread amidst her work is the stylization of memories, absence, the loss of, the non appropriation of reality and non interference with its time.

More of Lara’s work here

┐ Christina Z. Anderson └

© Christina Z. Anderson, Great Catch, from the series Family of Origin, 2009

© Christina Z. Anderson, Summer Sun, from the series Family of Origin, 2009

“Growing up the youngest in a family of 7 girls and 1 boy was a unique opportunity to be an observer of the social landscape, particularly of the female variety. In 2000 after the death of both parents, I became the archivist for my family of origin’s photographs. This archive includes both black and white and color images from the 1800’s to the 1980’s, about 25,000 images in all. Most of the images are damaged, moldy, and dusty. Over the past 8 years this work has been edited and reedited and is now woven into the fabric of my present work to express a sort of continuum of universal family “reality.” All images are printed in the tricolor gum bichromate process. Images are printed “as is,” with damage not Photoshopped out. Quirk and humor exist alongside sadness and darkness, because, in this family as well as in most, there were darker dramas going on beneath the smiling Kodachrome faces.”

More of Christina’s work here

┐ Chih-Chien Wang └

© Chih-Chien Wang, Banana skin on chair, from the Jelly Project #2, 2009

© Chih-Chien Wang, Feet with dry leaves, from the series The centre of the forest is a lake like mirror, 2005

© Chih-Chien Wang, Crabs, from the series The centre of the forest is a lake like mirror, 2005

“In his photographs, we have the impression of seeing time frozen in a process of research, of assemblages and minute maneuverings. The goal of which is, according to the artist, to ‘rediscover’ what is around him. To do this, Wang produces modest and efficient compositions that demonstrate an intense sensitivity to the shapes of things that travel through the domestic universe. With finesse and elegance, he translates the transience of the material world as it manifests itself in a crumpled piece of wrapping paper, food scraps on a table, an old rag. Wang develops a malleable vocabulary in his photographs – with a simplicity that reinforces the structure of that which rests on the contrasts of colours, the effects of textures, and the outlines of objects with undefined backgrounds. Wang searches for the essence of his compositions with a scarcity of means and without either artifice or ostentation; and his games and masquerades resituate something of himself.”

François Dion, excerpt from “Combinations”, Spirale #215, July 2007,

A must see!!!

More of his work here

║ Sarah Mei Herman ║

© Sarah Mei Herman, Julian and Jonathan, from the series Jonathan and Julian, 2007

© Sarah Mei Herman, Julian and Jonathan, from the series Jonathan and Julian, 2009

“I am fascinated by relationships between people: The physical closeness or distance between them, and the importance of this physical proximity to others. I mainly focus on family intimacy, with a special interest in sibling relationships.My younger half-brother Jonathan is an important subject in my work: a nine-year-old boy who has the ability to completely withdraw into his inner world. Throughout the last few years I have been photographing Jonathan alone or together with our father. I’m interested in the ‘triangular’ relationship between the three of us. My memories as a young child, of the relationship with my father, are somehow mirrored in my half-brother.”

More of Sarah’s work here

║ Susan Worsham ║

Untitled-1 copy

© Susan Worsham, Lynn watching Dr. Phill, from the series Some Fox Trails in Virginia


© Susan Worsham, Hearse in my childhood driveway, from the series Some Fox Trails in Virginia


© Susan Worsham, Untitled, from the series Some Fox Trails in Virginia

“This series of photographs is taken in and around Virginia, the place in which I grew up. The title comes from a book written by my father’s ancestor, to show the lineage of the Fox family in Virginia. For my own purpose, it acts as a metaphorical map, of the rediscovered paths of my childhood home.

At the age of 34, I came back to Virginia to care for my mother, who died shortly after my return. As the last of my family passed, I turned my lens to old friends, and their new families. I photographed the house in which I grew up. The man that lives there now houses snakes in my father’s old office, and rests them in my old bedroom, while he changes their cages. My mother always promised that there were no snakes in my room, and now that she is gone, there are. A hearse sits in my childhood driveway, representing the passing of my father, and suicide of my brother.

These photographs are not meant to be purely autobiographical, but rather representations of how I view things, based on my own experiences, and those of the people that I have met along the way. My boyfriend Michael, stands on the street I grew up on, bridging the gap between past and present. Lynn, the first stranger that ever sat for me, continues to pose for me, along with her son Max. I have been photographing her for sixteen years now.”

To see more of Susan’s work click here

║ Peter Fraser ║


© Peter Fraser, Untitled, from the series 12 Day Journay, 1984006

© Peter Fraser, Untitled, from the series 12 Day Journay, 1984

“I see photographs everywhere, like everyone else, nowadays; they come from the world to me, without my asking; they are only ‘images,’ their mode of appearance is heterogeneous…I realized that some provoked tiny jubilations, as if they referred to a stilled center, an erotic or lacerating value buried in myself (however harmless the subject matter may have appeared)…” So writes Roland Barthes, pointing out the way in which we have learned to see “photographically,” to frame, to snap, to make our memories into fragmented images to be recalled (or not) as though appearing in a mnemonic scrapbook. The accumulated mass of the world appears as a heterogeneous fabric of multi-colored threads, a tiny percentage of them glistening, glancing toward the eye of a beholder, provoking “tiny jubilations.” Fraser seeks these shudders, behaving as a convalescent drunken child charmed with the sparkle of even the most pedestrian things, unwilling to posit any hierarchy of value between, say, the hue of a lumpy red suitcase and the intricate scaffold-structure of a communications satellite. To borrow a term from Russian structuralism, Fraser is in the business of “making strange,” not because he is endowed with any secret transformative touch but, rather, because he sees strangeness itself as the most natural thing in the world.

Johanna Burton, New York, December 2003

To see more of Peter’s work click here

║ Mari Hirata ║


© Mari Hirata, Heels Hoist #3, from the series Domestic Bliss, 2007


© Mari Hirata, The Pregnant Bride, from the series Domestic Bliss, 2007

“My Photographs talk about the unity of formality and informality. It is the combination of established procedure and order, with the notion of surrealism and visual puns.

Progressing forward from the commencement of my photographic works, the White Shoe Series, evolves several works of an analogous kind, which similarly deals with the process of collecting, installing, and documenting objects of the same, multiplied components. After much exploration of various materials, I have come to revisit my primary subject, the white high heels, wherein my attempts are to challenge the human eye, its perception to make sense, and the condition in which our minds attempts to identify with memory, and past visual experiences.”

Mari Hirata

To see more of Mari’s work click here

║ Mika Rottenberg ║


© Mika Rottenberg, Performance Still (PJ & Cheryl), from the series Performance Stills, 2008


© Mika Rottenberg, Performance Still (Raqui on Pete), from the series Performance Stills, 2008 


© Mika Rottenberg, Performance Still (Kat legs & Torso), from the series Performance Stills, 2008

“Bodies, at once repulsive and sensual, larger-than-life and ever-so-ordinary, are vital to factories: their products appropriated; their shapes subsumed; their excretions packaged; their quirks put to work. Here is where the freakshow meets the sweatshop. Factories take on the features of cages and kitchens, their technology at once whimsical and industrial. A pinwheel spins. Dough rises. A bicycle chain ferries fingernails. Sweat is shrink-wrapped. Virginity is conveyed along belts. An allergic reaction becomes a force of production.
There is materialism and anti-materialism. On the one hand, factories are designed to the minute specification of material substance: dough is subject to entropy and gravity, yeast is subject to oxygen and heat, value is subject to demand and supply, and bodies are subject to growth and decay. While on the other hand, causal processes violate expectations of space and time: sweat drips too slowly to collect in that quantity; dough is too thick to stretch that far; bodies are too fragile to sit so stooped; life is too short to labor that long.
There is at once a contraction and expansion of human capability. Persons, though full-blooded and able bodied, have their degrees of freedom constrained to a single plane. Twist, pull, peddle, shove. Squeeze, blow, wipe, crinkle. Yet, their seemingly useless properties are finally utilized; their seemingly monstrous attributes are finally actualized. A sneeze is harnessed. Double-joints are wielded. Gender becomes a motive force. Gigantism is yoked. Obesity is deployed. Ethnicity provides traction.
In an economic climate evermore set on circulation-based theories of value, Mika Rottenberg’s videos and drawings emphasizes the centrality of labor. In a political climate evermore set on delocalization, these works brings otherwise disparate processes into a single frame of view. And in a social climate evermore set on fragmentation and depersonalization, Rottenberg’s work emphasizes whole persons and unique personalities.”
Paul Kockelman

A behind-the-scnenes movie from the series can be seen here

║ Shadi Ghadirian ║


 © Shadi Ghadirian, Domestic Life #4, from the series Like Every Day (Domestic Life), 2002


 © Shadi Ghadirian, Domestic Life #7, from the series Like Every Day (Domestic Life), 2002


© Shadi Ghadirian, Domestic Life #13, from the series Like Every Day (Domestic Life), 2002

“Ghadirian made her Like Every Day Series after her marriage to fellow photographer, Peyman Hooshmand-zadeh. In this body of work, Ghadirian comments upon the daily repetitive routine to which many women find themselves consigned and by which many women are defined. Each of these color photographs depicts a figure draped in patterned fabric in place of the typical Iranian chador. However, instead of a face, each figure has a common household item such as an iron, a tea cup, a broom, a pot or a pan.”

source: aeroplastics

To see more of Shadi’s work click here

║ Sofia Silva ║


© Sofia Silva, Fiber Organic Memory, from the series Memory’s Architecture, 2009 (work in progress)


© Sofia Silva, Losing Inner Heat, from the series Memory’s Architecture, 2009 (work in progress)

“Although alcohol isn’t a medicine, it can provoke the sensation of regeneration and strength, distorting an impetus of momentary courage. At the same time we feel it kills our thirst and feed us, what it really does is to bring the blood to the surface of the skin, in fact impairing the functioning of all the organs able to emit the sensation of strength, heat, hunger or thirst.
“Memory’s Architecture” is a series that started out from the will to reflect upon the sensations experienced (and/or lost) before, during and after moments of coexistence marked by the absence of alcohol.
Here, the alcohol is a key element. Each of these photographs is the result of an exercise to revisit the past, always bearing in mind that the memory of what we have no access to will forever be, solely and exclusively, recorded in the memory of others and in devices that allow to file it, leaving it to be part of a future that, although documenting us, no longer belong to us.”
Sofia Silva

║ Paula Muhr ║


© Paula Muhr, Untitled #8, from the series MM, 2005


© Paula Muhr, Untitled #11, from the series MM, 2005

“The series explores issues relating to childhood memories, intimacy, and anxiety about the imminent future loss. Stark, often almost abstract images of my grandmother’s body, naked or in underwear, are combined with texts in which I express my memories of the childhood spent with her, re-tell anecdotes from her youth or describe her current habits.
The interaction between the images of her aged body, presented in fragments, and the words which offer a very personal and, therefore, partial insight into her personality, mediate the elusive presence of the past. Barthes stated that photograph is a form of «flat death» as it not only presents us with what was, but also precedes the actual death of the depicted person. My granny’s face is never directly shown on the images – it is rather portrayed with the aid of words. Text, thus, plays an important role, not just as a strong graphic presence, but also as a means of suggesting the inability to directly visually represent intimacy and personal attachment.
My grandmother’s fragile body, although it defies conventional presentations of female nudity, is everything but repulsive, since her willingness to reveal her flesh to the gaze of camera asserts its own norms of beauty. She is proud of body, which is still functional and quite healthy in such advanced age, and this self-assurance is the source of her beauty.
Ever since I can remember my granny, her body has already been old. In my childhood, it symbolised comfort and protection. However, throughout the years, as I have been observing her body slowly, but surely detereorating, it has also become for me a memento mori, a sign of inevitable passage of time. In such a case, her corpulence, the sheer presence of her body with all the traces of time incribed in it, becomes as important as the memories of the moments spent with her.”

Paula Muhr

To see more of  Rafal”s work click here

║ Lisa Lindvay ║

© Lisa Lindvay, Bottles under bed

© Lisa Lindvay, Game Room

“These photographs depict the lives of my father, sister and two brothers, as they take on the burden of my mother’s deteriorating mental state. This work represents an extended look at the physical and emotional currents within their home to question the sanctity of family life and domestic comfort.”
Lisa Lindvay

To vie more of Lisa’s work click here.

║ Jessamyn Lovell ║

© Jessamyn Lovell, Family, 2003
from the series Catastrophe, Crisis and other Family Traditions

© Jessamyn Lovell, Klare Not Listening, 1999
from the series Catastrophe, Crisis and other Family Traditions

© Jessamyn Lovell, Mommy with phone, 1999
from the series Catastrophe, Crisis and other Family Traditions

“There is something about my family that brings me back. I just don’t want them to forget about me out here.
I keep photographing the same place, the same people again and again. Roll after roll goes through my camera and so many questions still go unanswered.
I can’t imagine my life without this project, but I can sense what it used to be is slipping away. I feel myself returning home only to find that everything’s changed.
I think back to when I lived there and took care of them. Now I have to take care of myself. This project keeps them with me.
When I return home, I become overwhelmed with how familiar it all is, even though so much has changed. I remember a piece of myself as soon as I walk through the door. I haven’t come back to photograph, not really. What I want is to be close to them.
I want to go home.”
Jessamyn Lovell

To see this full body of work click here.

║ Ville Lenkkeri ║

© Ville Lenkkeri, The Collected Works of Lenin, from the series The Place of No Roads

© Ville Lenkkeri, Dead Domestic Plants II, from the series The Place of No Roads

“Two Russian communities on Spitsbergen have had their times of bloom. Now one of them is a ghost town and also the other one is running out reasons and will to exist. In this series these towns are studied subjec-tively as cases of risen and fallen utopias. Photographed on Spitsbergen 2003-. Work in progress.”
Ville Lenkkeri

To see more of Ville’s work click here