Day 7 of our Instagram TAKEOVER with @iphoneartgirl – Meri Walker and @dleibo – David Leibowitz was as inspiring as ever, not least because on this particular day @iphoneartgirl featured a mobile photographer who I have personally admired for a long time, @olddog13 – Susan Rennie. I admire her so much in fact, that during my lecture at the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea in 2015, I screened a video I had curated of her cafe portraits to the live professional audience.
Prior to my presentation in Seoul, I asked Rennie for more information, her behind the scenes ethos of this portrayal series. I was inspired by Rennie’s critical approach, none of the models are aware that she is capturing their photographs, seizing their private moments whilst simultaneously exploiting the freedom of the Apple iPhone, enabling her to capture the dynamic inhabitants of her local coffee shop in California. This is what she told me, “One of the great challenges of portrait photography is the self-consciousness of the subject, who invariably presents a public persona to the photographer. With some street photography one can grab a fleeting image that momentarily penetrates the outer mask at least until the person becomes aware of the camera. But how can a photographer make a candid shot, with a different truth, from extended observation? Sitting in my local Venice cafe I thought how I would like to photograph the expressions, gestures, body language of my various fellow patrons, making a portrait that observed the inner persona the candid persona that provokes a story for the viewer. The simple answer was that using the iPhone I had in my hand I could become a modern participant-observer. Made possible by the thoroughly modern technology of the iPhone I’ve made my cafe my community/ studio, and the stream of people at the small tables across from me my fellow participants/ sitters. Like the other patrons, I am absorbed in my iPhone: reading news, checking emails, getting the latest on FaceBook but also taking photographs. As Meri Walker, an inspired mobile photographer, commented about this project: This is an ethnographic portrait of the Abbot’s Habit tribe”.
I have also attached the film that I presented in Seoul, South Korea that I discussed above.
Now, lets get to Day 7 and read @iPhoneartgirl’s thoughts on @olddog13’s latest work. She writes “@iphoneartgirl here for @theappwhisperer. I can’t NOT feature this photo today captured by the experienced eye of @olddog13 aka Susan Rennie. Susan’s street photography caught my attention four years ago and I haven’t lost interest in her journey since. This image, like so many in her “Cafe Portraits” series speaks volumes about the ways human beings use coffee shops now to find solitude while being right out in public. Tones and composition accentuate the bittersweet”
We are so excited with our latest Instagram TAKEOVER this time with @iphoneartgirl – Meri Walker and @dleibo – David Leibowitz. Singularly they are hugely talented mobile photographers and artists but combined, they are a phenomenal force of mobile talent! We are so honoured that they have taken over our Instagram feed for fourteen days. I particularly like how they put into words, what these discoveries mean to them, take a look, I’m sure you will agree.
‘Spotlight’ As Shown At Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea with Susan Rennie
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