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First Three Photobiennale-2014 Exhibitions
February 26, 2014 09:36


First three Photobiennale-2014 exhibitions opened in the Multimedia Art Museum: the retrospective of the famous fashion photographer Erwin Blumenfeld is accompanied by the 60s series of Garry Winogrand "Women are beautiful" and the visual almanac titled "Another London."

The official opening of the 10th International Month of Photography in Moscow will take place just in March, but traditionally the first events of the photobienalle program are held earlier. These events are not of minor importance at all. Current three exhibitions in MAMM can be considered not like a prelude to the festival, but as part of its real, full-fledged content. Exhibitions’ impressing sizes and authors' names confirm this.

The retrospective exhibition of the legendary Erwin Blumenfeld is called "Photos, drawings, photomontage", which refers to his favorite techniques, but not to the dramatic features of this show. Meanwhile, they are somewhat unexpected: you are habitually expecting from fashion photographer the endless variations of glamor, even vintage in this case, but Blumenfeld is emerging here as Dadaist experimenter.

This tendency rooted in his youthful experience, when he, a German Jew by origin had deserted from the battlefields of the First World War, settled in Amsterdam and made the acquaintance of the artist George Gross.

American Garry Winogrand, whose exhibition is located next door, was from the next generation, which is obvious not only from the dates of his birth and death, but also from the works themselves. He started photographing the "Women are beautiful" series in 1960, just when the war in Vietnam began, and he documented quite clearly the changes that have occurred in American society over the next decade.

Nevertheless, Winogrand was not looking for some iconic scenes that illustrate the state of society. His journalism consisted of snatching almost random street mise-en-scènes – with girls, of course, as the title implies. There are no recognizable faces, and yet all persons and situations seem familiar.

The third project is devoted entirely to a city, not some kind of an abstract metropolis, but quite specific London of 1930-1970s. An important parameter of this exhibition is that here are collected the works of pass-through photographers, who perceived the British capital, to some extent, as terra incognita. Though, some gradation is detected:  for some of them these London sessions were short trips, like for the Soviet photographer Ivan Shagin, who got at the other side of the Iron Curtain in 1945, while others have settled there forever, finding the second motherland.

Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Photobiennale Multimedia Art Museum Erwin Blumenfeld Garry Winogrand  

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