Brendan Pattengale was born in Los Angeles and was always surrounded by art. He started interesting himself with colour very early and has worked his way to finding his own language and a very distinctive style. We can clearly see how much colour matters in his latest series of Landscapes ‘The Colour of Love’. They are not common views of mountains and lowlands. They take us into a parallel universe where we could meet Georgia O’Keeffee, they seem at times more like watercolours or pastel drawings than photographs. They demand attention and careful observation and they give us a sense of what’s unexplored not only into photography but on a personal level, and invite us to travel and try and find these places in our own journey.
“By creating a partial, temporary outdoor studio for each tree, Lee’s ‘portraits’ of trees play with ideas of scale and perception” Simple in concept, complex in execution, he makes us look at a tree in its natural surroundings, but separates the tree artificially from nature by presenting it on an immense white ground, as one would see a painting or photograph on a billboard.
Arno is an unusual photographer. He takes self-portrait very seriously. So why is he in this list dedicated to landscapes? Because his self-portraits are very unusual. Looking at his pictures you cannot, at times, distinguish between body and land. This is what fascinates us and makes us smile with delight, his photos are clever, carefully composed landscape self-portrait where you never see his face but body parts instead. A hand caressing a mountain top, a foot stepping into a lake, a body ‘hiding’ among a group of trees… His perspective views are just fantastic works of deception and the result of carefully planned shoots. He doesn’t retouch his photos and he threw himself the challenge of achieving a perfect shot ‘in camera’. He also uses his work to remain young, as through intensive exercise and his goal of challenging himself over and over to complete new ideas he can keep his body and mind young.
In one of her latest series called “Umbra” Viviane Sassen plays with coloured glass panels inserted directly into the landscape as well as using them to create reflections and refractions onto the sand. It’s like watching Malevich’s paintings come alive in the Namibian desert. The scene is quite surreal and challenges our eyes, the compositions are superbe and the reflections leave you questioning how they were achieved. They capture your attention and your eyes wonder around the frame trying to capture the essence of the photograph itself.
Richard Mosse has been awarded the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2014 for his installation “The Enclave” at the Venice Biennale 2013. In 2012 Mosse set off to the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, together with a cinematographer and a composer (with a video project in mind), to document a war that was almost never spoken of but that had killed 5.4 million people since 1998. He decided to use a particular film (both for video and photographs), an infrared military surveillance film that registers the infrared light which is invisible to the human eye making the invisible visible. The images are dominated by a strong shade of pink, which is not usually associated with war or violent images, and it creates a vast sense of confusion in the viewer, it is a surreal and disorientating experience.