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Gynecological Tools Throughout the Years, in Photos

Fergusson’s Speculum, Duke University’s History of Medicine Collections, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, c. 1880.

Birthing Stool, Private Collection, c. Unknown.

Vaginal Tube & Wire Work Speculum, Duke University’s History of Medicine Collections, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, c. early 20th century.

In the last couple of years, Lindsey Beal has found herself in some of the country’s leading medical libraries, where she’s examined gynecological tools dating back centuries. “I was often required to wear surgical gloves when handling the items, as if I were using the items medically,” she tells me. “[That] directly connected me to the history and use of the items by placing myself in the shoes of the practitioner.” But Beal isn’t the typical researcher; she’s not a medical historian but a photographer, artist, and educator, and her project Parturition provides an intimate visual account of women’s health throughout the years.

David LaChapelle’s Stunning “Letter to the World”

State of Consciousness, 2018 Impression pigmentaire/ pigment print. 163 x 111 cm

A New World, 2017
Impression pigmentaire, negatif peint a la main / hand-painted negative pigment-print.
162,2 x 242,5 cm

“By three methods we may learn wisdom,” Confucius observed. “First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.”

In the 2,500 years since Confucius wrote these words, his observation of human nature has been proven true countless times — but time is now working against us, as the first fifty years of the Antropocene Era dauntingly reveal. We see it unfolding before our very eyes, but we are far too deep in the thick of it to pull ourselves free, as all systems of progress are moving toward the future as though it were a fait accompli.

Yet there is always possibility embedded in the existence of hope, of the final force unleashed from Pandora’s Box. It is how we move forward despite what foresight suggests in the study of the human condition and the prophecies that it brought forth. It is the answer when there is none. A flash of light in the darkness to remind us, all has not been lost. It is the spark that shines and reflects: there is a better way.

Timeless Photos Capture the Poetry of the Human Form

Edward Weston wrote more than once about photographing the “quintessence” of every subject, whether it be the human body or a botanical specimen. Exploration of sensuality and melancholy–A State of Nature, a new project from the photographer Daniel Dorsa and the producer Tina Michelle Chen from the ROOT Creative team, is a contemporary look at the timeless principles artists have grappled with for generations; decades after Weston, they set out in search of those elusive but “quintessential” truths about our bodies, our relationships, and our desires.

A Breathtaking Portrait of Women Amid a Primordial Landscape

From Where We Came

Utero

“At dusk and dawn, the edge of slumber and first light, these figures awaken out of the darkness and live in the hours when others dream,” LilIi Waters writes in the artist statement for her disquieting series, Others Dream, which features women amid an otherworldly landscape that is equal parts foreboding and curious.

Photographed across Western Australia, the images from Others Dream offer a mystical, mythical portrait of the primordial essence of life that begins in utero before being launched upon the earth. They offer themselves as wordless poems, silent revealing secrets to us, offering a moment of meditation where we can escape the artifice that civilization demands and return to something infinitely simpler albeit impossible to fully comprehend.

Here Waters shares her journey, revealing the path that brought her to the creation of this body of work, offering insight on the effortless synergy of life and art.

Inside Chris Stein’s Punk Photo Diary

Snuky Tate, Fab 5 Freddy, and kid punk band the Brattles, 1981. The Brattles opened for the Clash at their New York City show at Bonds on Times Square.

Brooklyn’s own Chris Stein took up photography in 1968, at the age of 18, and began to amass a body of work documenting New York life as the punk scene came into existence. In 1973, he met and began working with Debbie Harry, and together they founded Blondie. From this rarified position, Stein had the best view in the house, the consummate insider in the quintessential outsider scene.

His new book, Point of View: Me, New York City, and the Punk Scene (Rizzoli New York), is a visual diary of daily life during the 1970s, the rawest decade of them all. Stein takes us all the way back to his days as a student at SVA, and gives us a guided tour of a young artist coming of age in a city that was equal parts decadent and derelict, and home to characters like none before or since, be it William Burroughs, David Bowie, Divine, Andy Warhol, or the Ramones.

The Secret Life of Alpacas, in Photos

According to Andean mythology, alpacas are gifts from the gods and goddesses. They arrived in our world under one condition: we must always treat them well and tend to their needs. Many centuries later, the photographer Daniel Gebhart de Koekkoek pays homage to these age-old animals with Better Living with Alpacas, a new calendar in which he imagines the secret life of a few mischievous fellows.

Eugene Richards Looks Back at a Life in Photography

Eugene Richards, Snow globe of the city as it once was, New York, New York, 2001.
Gelatin silver print. Collection of Eugene Richards.

Eugene Richards, Grandmother, Brooklyn, New York, 1993.
Gelatin silver print. Collection of Eugene Richards.

More than half a century ago: the New Journalism came of age — a style of reportage so wholly unlike what came before that made it clear the seeming “objectivity” espoused by the Western eye was blind to its own innate biases. Rather than continue to presuppose one could be disinterested in covering subjects like Civil Rights and the Vietnam War, many journalists took a stand, opting to explore the complex truths of human life during the final half of the twentieth century — including their own.

Like W. Eugene Smith before him, photographer Eugene Richards (b. 1944) used the photo essay as a means to engage with his subjects through the profound transformation that comes when human beings not only connect, but are seen, heard, understood, and able to share their lives in a holistic way.

Throughout the course of his career, Richards has focused on the essential experiences of life that are daily fodder for headlines including birth, death, poverty, prejudice, war, and terrorism. But through Richards’s lens, we come to understand just how little we know — and how deeply reliant we are upon those who do the reporting in our stead.

In Eugene Richards: The Run-On of Time, now on view at the International Center of Photography through January 6, 2019, we are given a stunning trip through Richards’s life in photography. The exhibition and accompanying catalogue distributed by Yale University Press serve to remind us that we are responsible for evaluating not only the content but also the quality and caliber of the source itself. It is not enough to be talented and to have mastered technique; one must stand for something, and in doing so, use their skills in the service of the greater good.

Here, Richards shares his extraordinary journey, that includes a healthy dose of skepticism about the photograph itself.

Poignant Photos of a Man in the Final Year of His Life

Hugo, the oldest man in the town of Las Cascadas, spends time sitting in his couch watching how the wind moves the trees on his farm on a cold winter day on July 25th, 2016.

From his farm in southern Chile, Hugo says the Osorno Volcano is majestic, imposing, and the most beautiful in the world. While this view has been with him every day, he often confuses it with other volcanos.

Years ago, two men, Hugo Küschel and Teodoro Hofmann, lived in the village of Las Cascadas, Chile. Here, they tended their farms, raised their families, and became dear friends. Teodoro passed away in 1978, but more than thirty-five years later, his granddaughter, the photographer Constanza Hevia H., would meet Hugo for the first time. By then, Hugo was the oldest man living in Las Cascadas, and he and his wife Wilma spent their time inside their house, where the photographer became a regular visitor. “One day, I asked Hugo if he was afraid of death,” she says. “He told me, ‘Look, I look at it in this way: tomorrow or the day after tomorrow, one has to leave this earth.'” The Time I Have Left is her record of Hugo’s memories and the final chapter of his life.

Poetic Photos from an Anti-Drilling Protest Camp

Last year, the photographer Ben Terzza spent many evenings exploring the Bury Hill Wood in Surrey, England. During one quiet sunset, he happened across a Fallow Deer, accompanied by her fawn. “These woods are quite secluded so there’s hardly anyone ever up there,” he remembers. All was peaceful, but the meeting was bittersweet, tainted by the knowledge that the landscape was at risk. Over the summer, Terzza would help tell the story of a place called Leith Hill, looming plans for drilling in the area, and the protest camp fighting for its future.

Join Us in Brooklyn for The Print Swap Holiday Exhibition!

Photos (clockwise from left): @bottenvikenmatters@tinetti_julie@alixjoyce@konrad.jpg

Plastic Planet © Wolf Silveri (@wolf.silveri), Rosenheim, Germany

Every Day is a Gift © Deborah Hodges (@debhodges), Gig Harbor, WA

In 2016, Feature Shoot launched The Print Swap in hopes of connecting photographers across the world. Eight international exhibitions later and with more on the way, we’re thrilled to announce the largest Print Swap show ever, taking place at the beautiful ROOT Studios in Brooklyn on December 13th. This will be our second holiday party, and every single photographer who participated in the swap between mid-September and mid-November will exhibit their work. We have artists from all over the globe represented, and with some of them traveling from faraway locales to attend, it will surely be a night to remember. If you’re in town, be sure to RSVP here.

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