Every Booth at Paris Photo 2015, Part 4 of 5

Yesterday morning, we published our Part 3 booth-by-booth summary of Paris Photo in the hazy wake of the frightening terrorist attacks here in Paris, not entirely sure of what was happening in the city or of what might come next. A day later, we now know that as part of a national period of mourning for the victims, all of the public buildings throughout the area will remain closed, including the Grand Palais. So the fair is closed, and will not reopen. In the context of what has gone on here, the stubborn desire not to let the terrorists change our lives even one bit is tempered by the need to empathize with those who have lost someone and to reflect.

For our part, since we visited all of the booths in the first few days that the fair was operating, we actually have all the information we need to review each and every booth as planned. And so we will respectfully complete our reporting, regardless of the fact that the booths are no longer available for viewing. Today’s portion of the report is Part 4 and we will finish with Part 5 tomorrow. We hope that the broad nature of the summary will allow those who had planned to visit the show over the weekend to get at least a small taste of the exciting photography of all kinds that was being shown this year.

While it is certainly possible to jump into the middle of our Paris Photo 2015 summary reports and find your way to your favorite galleries, starting at the beginning and working through the booths systematically may make the most sense. Part 1 of our report can be found here, and along with one group of booth reports (the center section), it includes some general background on the fair (pre-attacks) and the outline of the slideshow format. Part 2 (middle left) can be found here, and Part 3 (middle right) can be found here.

This Part 4 of the report covers the section to the far left of the central section, as seen from the main entrance.

Ilan Engel (here): This booth is a solo show of the landscapes of Stephan Crasneanscki. Each work is a triptych, with two smaller panels adjacent to a larger one. This structure is particularly effective for this image, in that the left panel is largely sky only, the middle a balance of sky and water, and the right sky, water, and land, creating a building progression from left to right. Priced at €10300.

FeldbuschWiesner (here): Christiane Feser’s work continues to explore the intermingling of 2D and 3D structures using cut paper and rephotography. This image dives into folds of varying heights, some flattened by the camera, others built up into space, creating an undulating mass of intentional optical dislocation. Priced at €17500.

De Roussan (here): This booth features a solo exhibition of the work of Lukas Hoffman, with this nine image set as one of the highlights. Fences, tarps, girders, and shadows provide the raw material for found angles and geometries, which create visual echoes across the typology. Priced at €12000 for the set.

Louise Alexander (here): This leggy Polaroid was part of a solo booth presentation of the work of Guy Bourdin. Shot in black and white as part of a Charles Jourdan commission in the spring of 1978, it was then reused for a large scale color image which doubled the legs and arms. The vintage Polaroid is priced at €21000.

Lelong (here): Massive Jean-Baptiste Huynh images dominated this booth, with large black and white florals and nudes filling walls left and right. While most of these formal studies were relatively straightforward, this floral’s mottling of opposing black and white blossoms gave it some unexpected punch. Priced at €16500.

Michèle Chomette (no site): Eric Rondepierre’s series Background uses film stills to painstakingly piece together famous movie sets, empty of actors and action. In the case of The Shining, the dated interior and creepy light seem even more ominous without the presence of Jack and his family. Is that the bathroom door that gets an axe through it? Priced at €5000.

Tanit (here): This double hung line of black and white images comes from Fouad ElKoury’s Suite Egyptienne. In 1849, De Camp and Flaubert visited Egypt, taking pictures and writing impressions, and ElKoury retraced those same steps in 1989-1990, making his own photographs. The 72 images on view hit the high points of pyramids, markets, trains, and tombs, with the elusive presence of a woman dashing through some of the frames. Priced at €90000 for the set.

Danziger (here): This both was a solid solo show of the 1970s mirrored nudes of Hans Breder. Both outside and in the studio, Breder used mirrors to smartly double and triple arms and legs, creating disorientingly elegant formal studies. Here a sand dune provides the backdrop for multiple echoes of bent knees. Priced at €12000.

Tasveer (here): OK, I’ll admit it. I featured this same exact Jyoti Bhatt image from this booth last year. I knew it looked somehow familiar when I saw it (not entirely remembering it from the previous report), and I was once again drawn in by the echo of the dark eyes of the girls and the dark circles above their heads. Without embarrassment, it’s just as good this year as it was before. Priced at €5000.

Johannes Faber (here): Not sure if this is the same exact print or just the same Karl Blossfeldt image that I saw in a different booth at the Armory Show in 2014. In any case, it’s still a sublime photograph, with the veined petals standing out against the back background like carved stone. Priced at €85000.

Vu’ (here): While booth organization isn’t something I highlight much in these reports, there is something inspired about the side by side hanging of these two images from Cédric Gerbehaye’s recent series D’Entre Eux. The diorama cheetah killing the antelope and the man nuzzling the woman, two versions of the age old predator and prey story, both with mouths on necks. A very smart juxtaposition indeed. Each image is priced at €1900.

Tolarno (here): This early Bill Henson image (from 1974) previews his later moves to even darker chiaroscuro. Young ballet dancers in headbands and hair buns are caught in pensive moments, with light streaming in from the nearby window like a Dutch painting. Henson’s image is darkly atmospheric, but not yet in the moody, mysterious, or highly charged way we have come to see as his signature. Priced at €10000.

Photo & Contemporary (here): Silvio Wolf’s bright, wall filling abstractions emerge from that moment before intentional photography takes place, when the film is being loaded into the camera. His compositions run from black to acidic yellow with fleeting stops at various shades of orange as the light is squeezed out, creating rotated vertical strips that climb up the wall. Priced at €12000.

Bryce Wolkowitz (here): Jim Campbell’s innovative works bring a form of movement to still frames. While the ornate fountain in this picture doesn’t actually change, ghostly dark shadows flit across the image from time to time, like passersby seen peripherally. It gives the convincing impression of passing time delivered in a single frame. Priced at $85000.

Hans P. Kraus Jr. (here): While there were several excellent 19th century florals in the Kraus booth this year, this multi specimen Anna Atkins cyanotype was the best. It had a deep blue tone, the leaves and small blossoms were crisp and delicate, and the composition was more sophisticated than a single stem. Priced at $40000.

Juana De Aizpuru (here): While mainstream Cindy Sherman prints are a staple of the international art fair circuit, I can’t seem to resist her stranger mid-1980s images that are often overlooked and dismissed. What’s not to love about the deliberate ugliness of this bursting mattress with fake squirrels, with Sherman lounging in the background in broken glasses, ripped tights, and an oversized nose? Priced at €150000.

Robert Hershkowitz (no site): This majestic 1850s landscape of the Pyrenees by Vicomte Joseph Vigier is full of tactile detail, particularly in the dark rocky washes that fall down toward the trickle of river in the center. It’s a richly balanced composition, with alternating jutting layers coming in from both sides. Priced at €50000.

Flowers (here): This new image from Michael Wolf brings the crisp formality he has been applying to smaller Hong Kong still lifes and views to something a bit broader. Its intricate grouping of plumbing pipes and windows is so tightly designed that it looks like a perfectly laid out circuit board. Priced at €14000.

Julian Sander (here): We reviewed Xu Hong’s innovative photobook Negatives earlier this year (here), so it was intriguing to see how he has translated his images to the display environment of the wall. Printed large, mounted without frames, and allowing the sprocket holes of the film to show, the presentation gives the prints a sense of immediacy that matches the active tone of the imagery. Priced at €6500.

Kalfayan (here): This image from Hrair Sarkissian is actually a scale model of his family’s apartment building in Damascus (they apparently lived on the first floor). After building the model, he went on to destroy it, taking a series of pictures as the dusty concrete rubble caved the center in. As a symbolic break with his past in Syria, it is an unambiguous statement. Priced at €28000.

Julie Saul (here): This 1971 Richard Artschwager work is a series of black and white images made in a park in Holland. In each image, the artist is the only person in a wide open space, standing in the grass away or on a sandy pathway. As a systematic experience of the park, it quietly probes isolation, scale, and distance. Priced at $35000.

Peter Lav (here): The newest project from Taiyo Onorato and Nico Krebs involves a road trip eastward through many of the Eurasian countries that used to make up the old Soviet Union. This solo booth presentation gives the series some breathing room, and some of the most puzzling of the pictures to emerge from this journey seem to involve oversized cultural artifacts (like this hammer) plopped down in the middle of empty landscapes. With a little helpful explanation from the gallery staff, it seems the images are actually clever montages of a sort, taking landscapes the two made on the trip and then using them as physical backdrops for still life objects found in an ethnographic museum, matching the artifacts with their rightful places. The works are perplexingly mis-scaled, forcing us to pay much closer attention to each object and its surroundings. Priced at €4200.

Bernheimer (here): Half of this booth was a solo show of the work of Lucien Clergue. And while Clergue’s sensual nudes dominated the selections, this still life of sea foam on rocks (no it’s not a cabbage leaf) caught my eye, perhaps precisely because it felt more unexpected. Priced at €4200.

Robert Klein (here): Faithfully appropriating the look and feel of stereograph cards (right down to the curved prints, the old time fonts, and the publisher details), Jeff Brouws’ new images of American industrial relics put an original spin on artistic territory previously cornered by the Bechers. His rigorously composed steel mills, grain elevators, trestle bridges, and blast furnaces feel perfectly at home in this faux-setting, like archival records of industrial structures long gone. Priced at $8500 for the set of 12 (only 9 on display).

Little Big Man (here): It somehow seems entirely right and fitting that Roger Ballen and Asger Carlsen have found each other as artistic collaborators. These powerfully creepy new images pair Ballen’s charcoal drawn environments and oddball characters with Carlsen’s manipulated bodies, creating new levels of distorted, disturbing grotesquerie. Priced at $8000.

Paris-Beijing (here): The immense disparity of scale in this image by Zhang Kechun is what gives it its vitality. A tiny cluster of swimmers stands on an isolated river rock, dwarfed by the hazy, smog choked city across the water, the distance between the two feeling almost insurmountable. Priced at €5000.

Le Réverbère (here): I can’t remember seeing the Fresson process since Sheila Metzner last used it, but Bernard Plossu’s recent images employ its deliberately grainy color subtleties quite effectively. Its mottled surface quality has plenty to play with in this segmented composition of red, yellow, and light blue/white walls. Priced at €2000.

School Olivier Castaing (here): French photojournalist Gilles Caron gets solo booth treatment here, with his images from Vietnam (in both color and black and white) taking center stage. This picture of soldiers set up in a defoliated wood, seemingly fighting in both directions, deftly captures a sense of perplexing wartime chaos and uncertainty. Modern prints, priced at €3500.

Part 5 of this summary can be found here.

Read more about: Anna Atkins, Asger Carlsen, Bernard Plossu, Bill Henson, Cédric Gerbehaye, Christiane Feser, Cindy Sherman, Eric Rondepierre, Fouad ElKoury, Gilles Caron, Guy Bourdin, Hans Breder, Hrair Sarkissian, Jean-Baptiste Huynh, Jeff Brouws, Jim Campbell, Jyoti Bhatt, Karl Blossfeldt, Lucien Clergue, Lukas Hoffmann, Michael Wolf, Richard Artschwager, Roger Ballen, Silvio Wolf, Stephan Crasneanscki, Taiyo Onorato and Nico Krebs, Vicomte Joseph Vigier, Xu Yong, Zhang Kechun, Bernheimer, Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery, Danziger Gallery, FeldbuschWiesner, Flowers Gallery, Galeria Juana de Aizpuru, Galerie de Roussan, Galerie Johannes Faber, Galerie Julian Sander, Galerie Le Réverbère, Galerie Lelong, Galerie Michèle Chomette, Galerie Paris-Beijing, Galerie Tanit, Galerie VU', Hans P. Kraus Jr. Fine Photographs, Ilan Engel Gallery, Julie Saul Gallery, Kalfayan Galleries, Little Big Man Gallery, Louise Alexander Gallery, Peter Lav Gallery, Photo & Contemporary, Robert Hershkowitz, Ltd., Robert Klein Gallery, School Gallery Olivier Castaing, Tasveer Gallery, Tolarno Galleries, Paris Photo

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