RENCONTRES ARLES - daily blog

DAY 3 - Wednesday July 4, 2007

See the video of Day 3

Last night was the first of the evening projections in the magnificent Théâtre Antique. First up was Jim Bloomberg who was awarded the Prix Henri Cartier-Bresson for his work on asylum seekers in Greece and the Ukraine. James Crump’s film ‘Black White + Gray’ about the enigmatic New York curator and collectionner Sam Wagstaff was a revealing portrait of a man best known for being the boyfriend of controversial ‘80s photographer Robert Mapplethorpe. This documentary aimed to set the record straight, outlining that Wagstaff was a major artistic influence as well as a generous benefactor.


Mathieu Pernot's exhibit. © Neil Atherton

Agence ‘Vu present several bodies of work at the old Capitole cinema, including Martin Kollar’s humorous reportage on central Europe’s transition from communism to capitalism, Virxilio Vieitez’s chronicles of life in Galicia. Mathieu Pernot’s B&W pictures show the demolition (a recurring theme in Arles this year?!) of apartment blocks in the Paris suburbs. Next to these somber images are the Technicolor reproductions of original picture postcards showing the buildings in their full glory when they were built in the 1960s. The juxtapositions works nicely.

 
Ambroise Tézenas' exhibit. © Neil Atherton

Upstairs, Ambroise Tézenas represents Beijing with his series titled ‘Theater of the People.’ Taken between 2001 and 2005, these daytime and night-time cityscapes document the urban environment as the city prepares for the 2008 Olympic games. Paradoxically, there isn’t much of a human presence in the photographs, but instead imposing architecture and colorfully-lit, deserted alleyways. An installation of Ousmane Sow’s bronze sculptures are watched over by an elephant as we make our way outside.

 
Jazz & Koeningswarter's polaroids. © Neil Atherton

Over at the Espace Van Gogh, jazz and photography  are brought together in Pannonica de Koenigswarter’s exhibit, featuring her polaroids of more than 300 jazz musicians, whom she frequented in the late ‘60s. Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, Art Blakey, Lionel Hampton, Sonny Rollins… they’re all here, captured on film often in Koenigswarter’s New York apartment which Monk named the ‘Cat house’ – not only because of all the jazz ‘cats’ that hung out there, but also because of the hundred or so pet cats that lived there. Koenigswarter asked her musician friends to all state their three wishes in life and it is no surprise, given the competition in the Big Apple at the time, that “To be the best” and “To be rich” are usually the first two responses.

 
Foam magazine. © Neil Atherton

The Dutch international photography magazine Foam presents a project by Raimond Wouda where adolescents are photographed in their school classrooms, canteens, etc. The lively color and almost life-size scale of the prints are an effective representation of today’s dynamic youth.

 
Raghu Rai's Reflections of India . © Neil Atherton

Raghu Rai has been Magnum’s India correspondent since 1977 and this retrospective, ‘Reflections of India’ in the Palais de l’Archeveché, is a retrospective of his life’s work. A mystical element often enters his photographs, transcending the daily comings and goings of his fellow countrymen – whether they be walking, talking, napping or praying – and turning the scene into a near spiritual experience. The show also includes momentous portraits of Ghandi, Mother Theresa and other Indian luminaries.


Christophe Laloi at Atelier Voies Off. © Neil Atherton

The Voies Off is the Arles fringe festival and this year the organizers, fronted by Christophe Laloi, inaugurated a new gallery space and printing service in their headquarters on rue Raspail. The inauguration featured photos from Richard Petit, Marine Lanier and Anna Epp.


Julie Pommery & Pia Elizondo

Cam à Yeux from Marseille also inaugurated a temporary space on rue 4 Septembre with photographers Pia Elizondo, Julie Pommery, Tatiana Margaux Bonhomme and Isabelle Blanc among others.


Smoke collectif. © Neil Atherton

On the same street, other openings were held by the Smoke collectif at the Salle Jean et Pons de Dieu, Malik Nejmi and Didier Clan at the Atelier du Midi and Work in Progress at the Eglise St. Julien.


Voies Off projections. © Neil Atherton

The evening ended at the Voies Off projections at the Cours de l’Arhevaché, but only because we weren’t invited to the Lou Reed concert at the Théâtre Antique…


 DAY 1 / DAY 2 / DAY 3 / DAY 4 / DAY 5 / DAY 6

See the video of Day 3

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