Saturday, 14 September 2013

introducing our collaborators, Mark Erickson, Birgit Zartl and Hanan Kazma

Mark Erickson was born in Hollywood, California and is a painter, photographer and collagist currently living and working in San Francisco and Oakland. He comes from a family with strong artistic traditions. In his career, Mark has used a variety of styles and tools, both in his paintings, mostly mixed media painting on canvas, collages, graphics and Polaroids; all the areas of his work, often intertwined, are characterised by a use of flowing, psychodelic colours, visual dynamism and multiple layers.  

As Mark said: "When it comes to my paper collage work and Polaroid shooting, I take more of a graphic approach, tending to single out the piece and offer it less in a pretty way, but more in what happens in the process. It follows wherever the mood strikes me. I’d rather photograph buildings in my Polaroid work than human figures. In similar fashion with collage, I treat it like a dance with paper and imagery. Accidents happen and those spontaneous occurrences interest me the most. I follow that lead in my work where the moment counts and the next step can be conscious or unconscious".  

You can find out more about Mark on his page and see more of his art and photographs here. 

Birgit Zartl lives and works in Vienna, Austria. Both an accomplished painter and photographer, her work is often evocative and dreamlike. Working primarily with instant film, Birgit uses her photography as an attempt to understand her thoughts and to express them outwardly. Her images usually depict a single metaphorical object to try to provoke or tease out a memory or feeling.

Her use of light, focus and colour or monochrome palette give her images a dreamlike quality that draws in the viewer and engages them in a way that creates a shared memory or feeling between the viewer and photographer. 

Recently, Birgit has started experimenting with self-portraits, her first fore into using people in her imagery. Her newer images, a further exploration of trying to visualise her thoughts and dreams, are full of dark symbols and depictions of objects such as bird cages, dead plants and wire arrangements, and are unnerving depictions of the darker side of the human consciousness. 

You can see more of Birgit’s photographs on her portfolio and page and find the books she designed and published on Blurb. 

Hanan Kazma, a photographer living in Lebanon, explores the ideas of self and tries to re-examine the classic idea of portraiture, using a range of in-camera and post-production techniques, such as long exposures, underwater shots, double and multiple exposures and different textures. Hanan’s self-portraits show the variety of techniques and styles that she uses to construct a diverse concept of identity and images that try to develop the idea of an inner self rather than the image of self we project from the outside.  

In 2011 Hanan began the project “Di-a-Log”, where she invited photographers and other artists to send her their self-portraits that she would then combine with portraits of herself to create diptychs as a collaborative dialogue between artists from diverse backgrounds and countries. The result is an interesting exploration into how our idea of self can be changed by an observer trying to understand. 

Many of her collaborations were turned into books, examples of which you can find here and here, along with some of her solo publications

You can see more of Hanan's work on her page and Flickr.


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