Work From Our Readers: Exhibitions and New Projects

By David Schonauer   Friday June 8, 2012

We’re happy to report that Pro Photo Daily’s readers are busy creating an astonishing array of work. Today we feature photographer Jana Cruder’s study of that always-modern couple Barbie and Ken, on view this month in Las Vegas. The photo duo Floto+Warner focused on groups of powerful business leaders for Fortunemagazine, while photographer Helen Glazer cast an eye skyward for powerfully emotional images of clouds. Photographer Chris Mottalini has indulged his desire to build cities with photography, and L.A. photographer Stephanie Diani has found the humanity inside the unemployment bureaucracy. Bravo to all. Please let us know what you’ve been doing.




“Great Expectations”

Barney’s New York—Las Vegas

Opens: June 15

 Los Angeles fashion photographer Jana Cruder’s latest series, titled “Great Expectations,” is a follow-up to a previous body of images that explored femininity and the lasting effects of Barbie on culture and perceptions of beauty. In the new work, which gets a sneak preview this month at Barney’s New York—Las Vegas, Cruder brings Barbie’s longtime companion Ken into the picture to take a humorous look at sexuality, identity, and the dichotomy of the modern male-female relationship. Cruder’s entire Barbie and Ken series will be unveiled later this year at Las Vegas’s Brett Wesley Gallery.





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“Fortune 500: The Directors”

Fortune Magazine

Fortunemagazine photo editor Alix Colow commissioned the photographic duo Floto+Warner to photograph the boards of directors of six of America’s most high-profile organizations: Estee Lauder; General Motors; eBay; The New York City Ballet; Harvard University; and Whole Foods. The photographic team, represented by the Vaughan Hannigan agency, shot most of the boards in New York, the exception being the board of Whole Foods, which was photographed in the company’s Haight-Ashbury store in San Francisco. None of the boards allowed more than 15 minutes for shooting, which, say the photographers, made the job a memorable experience.





“Temporary Presences”

Nailya Alexander Gallery, New York

June 14 to July 20

Helen Glazer’s solo exhibition at the Nailya Alexander Gallery in New York features her hand-colored photographs of nature’s most evanescent stuff: clouds. The work, says Glazer, is influenced “by ideas of chaos and complexity, theories that look at the diverse patterns in nature, such as the shape of coastlines, the growth of tree limbs, or the movement of fluids. The intricacy of cloud formations arises from an infinitely detailed system in which each tiny element reflects the pattern of the whole. With study, these patterns are recognizable, yet never entirely predictable.” Glazer intensifies her prints with pastel pencils to highlight these temporary presences.




“Concrete Island”

Brooklyn-based photographer Chris Mottalini focuses much of his work on architectural themes. One recent project, titled “Gray/Grey,” deals with two seemingly unrelated subjects: Cardboard skyscrapers and color blindness. Mottalini describes another new project, “Concrete Island,” as “architecture by means of photography—the creation of impossible architectonics through manipulation of the existing architecture on a small, concrete-dense island in New York City.” Mottalini, a native of Buffalo, New York, says he has never had a desire to be an architect himself. However, he says, he has long "wanted to build something with my camera.”





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“The Bureaucracy of Poverty”

Los Angeles-based photographer Stephanie Diani’s new project, “The Bureaucracy of Poverty,” takes a unique perspective on the very topical issue of unemployment.  “In 2010 a number of my friends were laid off and started to deal with the social services/unemployment departments in Los Angeles County,” says Diani. “I was curious about the people on the other end of the phone at these agencies—who is it, exactly, that decides whether an applicant receives benefits and for how long?” Diani’s portraits of social-service workers hint at the Kafkaesque nature of the employment agencies but also reveal the humanity at the heart of the bureaucracy.


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