All posts filed under: Projects

Russell Shakespeare finds solace, escape and community photographing his local rockpool

Over a period of five years, Shakespeare turned to his local swimming hole as a place of personal release, discovering a community there who also sought ritual, connection and escapism through hurling themselves into the body of water. For photographer Russell Shakespeare, the ritual of visiting his local swimming hole has been a regular release from the heat of south-east Queensland summers for as long as he can remember. But it wasn’t until just over over five years ago that Shakespeare began bringing his Leica along to the rock pool to photograph a community of “jumpers”, committed to hurling themselves from surrounding cliffs into the pools below. As Shakespeare recalls, the project was born at a time when he was looking for creative release from his then position as a staff photographer covering Queensland and often posted to regular assignments across the country. “At the time, I was travelling a lot,” reflects Shakespeare. “Working full time is great for the security but not for the soul and I really wanted to do something for myself, …

Tom Goldner explores issues of environment and colonialism through a faded Australian icon — the brumby.

In modern Australia, brumbies are a lightning rod for conflict across myriad political fault lines. They raise the spectre of colonial history and are viewed conversely as both precious national emblems and agents of ecological destruction. In popular media they are woven into a mythology of yawning mists, snow gums, cattlemen’s huts and The Man from Snowy River. But their saga is now playing out against a darkening backdrop; one of mega fires, plains of ash and a continent choked in toxic smoke. For photographer Tom Goldner, brumbies provide a window into the national psyche, and perform as emblems for our relationship with the natural world. His upcoming photobook (published by Momento Pro) Do brumbies dream in red? explores these themes in a careful sequence of medium and large format film photographs. His work is some of the most nuanced to emerge from the Black Summer to date, and is the culmination of a Master of Arts at Photography Studies College in Melbourne. The APJ spoke with Tom about the influences and philosophies driving his …

Photography in the Anthropocene: Vlad Sokhin’s ‘Warm Waters’

2018 was Australia’s hottest year on record. Now, coming off the back of the 2019 ‘climate election’, large swaths of the population are still firmly unimpressed with our nation’s commitment to curbing its reliance on fossil fuels. And rightly so. While PM Scott Morrison flew to the Solomon Islands a few months ago to “show our Pacific step-up in action”, his government’s commitment to climate action has been unimpressive. But as photographs of drought-stricken farmland and wildfires typically underpin the imagery Australia associates with its own contribution to anthropogenic climate change, the reality of the effects span much further and it’s there in the Solomon and other Pacific Islands where the effects of sea level rise are most imminent. Perhaps no other photographer on Earth is more attuned to this than Vlad Sokhin. For the last six years, his project ‘Warm Waters’ has seen him travel from Alaska to New Zealand, the Pacific and Antarctica, collecting visual evidence on the impacts of man-made global warming – from coastal erosion and rising sea levels to thawing …

Incidental recordings & peculiar aberrations in Fraser Stanley’s Railcam

Stanley’s new book ‘Railcam’ curates banality, grit and decisive moments along Australian train lines. ‘Railfans’ or ‘foamers’ — similar to birdwatchers — comprise a niche but very entrenched group of hobbyists in Australia: train-watchers. To the surprise of many Australians and to Melbourne-based photographer Fraser Stanley, so ardent is this subculture about locomotives that some have taken to constructing elaborate networks of motion sensitive cameras along railway lines around the country with thousands of images (intended to be images of trains) uploaded to an archive: Railcam. These Railcams function similarly to animal tracking and surveillance cameras in that they are triggered by motion; anything that enters the field of vision of the camera is recorded. It was during his time at Monash University that Stanley would peruse the Railcam archive with little to no intent other than curiosity. “As a distraction from my studies, I would often find myself trawling through this vast digital archive,” says Stanley. “The interface only permits the viewing of 25 or so images at any one time, so when a …

Ingvar Kenne, The Ball

Ingvar Kenne’s photographs have often represented a thorough exploration of identity and belonging. From his earliest works in his home country of Sweden, his highly acclaimed portrait monograph CITIZEN and a brief glimpse into the life of porn star Ron Jeremy in The Hedgehog and the Foxes, Kenne has focused extensively on both the everyday and the extreme periphery of social circles. But across his practice, Kenne has been unwavering in his approach to his subject matter. Namely: there is no approach. Throughout his several decades making portraits including those of such Australian icons as Reg Mombassa and Ben Mendelsohn, Kenne maintains the omission of any narrative connecting his chosen sitters “other than that they met me and my camera, applying the same parameters and taxonomic approach,” he says. Whether “a prime minister, a prostitute, famous actors, my wife, a priest and a nun, tribal dancers or a now dead friend”, Kenne’s choice of subject matter has been purely democratic across “one long random thread of encounters” in his life. So it was no surprise …

Lynette Spry: Let’s Get Together

Lynette Spry is a designer and photographer based in Melbourne, Australia. Since graduating from the Queensland College of Art majoring in social documentary in 2015, her practice has existed at the interface between the fine art, design and documentary worlds with a lengthy stint as editor at the Queensland Centre for Photography was followed by her pivot towards graphic design. After studying a cert IV through Shillington Education, Spry recently joined Brands to Life as a junior designer but maintains much of her photographic practice on the side. Her series, Let’s Get Together – an exploration of community events on Brisbane’s periphery has recently been published by Spooky Books. We caught up with Spry to find out where and when we can get our hands on a copy. — Can you tell us a bit about Let’s Get Together? What was the impetus behind embarking upon this work? ‘Let’s Get Together’ was born out of a desire to photograph strangers. I spent a lot of time prior to this project photographing family, friends and my …