Jason Larkin is a British photographer internationally recognised for his long-term social-documentary work. His first publication Cairo Divided, a freely-distributed newspaper, was nominated for both the Deutsche Börse and Prix Pictet photography awards.
Larkin’s work is the recipient of numerous awards and grants including the Pulitzer Crisis Grant, Arts Council England Grant, PDN New Portraiture Award & Renaissance Photography Prize. His work is regularly exhibited at photography festivals including FotoFest, USA; Unseen, Holland, Brighton Photo Biennial and Hereford Photography Festival, UK.
Landskrona Theatre Park
19-28 August 2016
While living in Johannesburg, British photographer Jason Larkin was struck by the ever-present reality of people waiting. Waiting for jobs, waiting for opportunities, waiting for politics to effect change. Many of his encounters were with people who were ready for this change, but who, for a variety of personal, political and historical reasons were left waiting. He saw this not only in news coverage and in conversations, but also in his physical experience of Johannesburg. He grappled with the apparent contrast between this experience and the otherwise dynamic and transforming urban environment.
Inactive yet expectant, this condition becomes a visual echo of the predicament many South Africans find themselves in. Though many wait alone, the amount of people waiting means that this becomes a collective, city-wide experience. Travelling across the city, often on foot, Larkin realised he could capture the anxiety of commuters waiting for public transport to take them home. In these photographs, he highlights the actual space occupied by people in the process as well as the hypothetical shadow they wait within.
“Visually, I was drawn to those seeking shelter from the harsh summer sun by positioning themselves in the shade,” Larkin says. “Figures here occupy ephemeral spaces of respite created by the surrounding urban environment. These shadows remove the individuals’ identities, leaving only the subtlety of posture and the details of place.” With only the waiting period accompanying each image, the purpose or possible outcomes of these situations are unclear. We are left to meditate on the temporality of these individual situations and the indirect connections that waiting creates.
Denis Darzacq, born 1961 in Paris, has developed personal work since the mid-1990’s. Like many other French photographers of his generation, Denis Darzacq worked in press photography which forged his artistic work and sharpened his eye for contemporary society. Darzacq won the 2007 World Press Photo prize in the category “Arts & Entertainment” for his series “La chute” and the prestigeous french prize “Niepce” in 2012.
He has published a number of books including “Act” (2012), “Hyper” (2009),“La Chute” (2007), “Bobigny centre ville” (2006, co-author Marie Desplechin), “Le ciel etoile au-dessus de ma tête” (2004), “Ensembles 1997/2000” (2001).
La Chute & Hyper
Landskrona Theatre Park
19-28 Augusti 2016
In the wake of the riots and violent clashes that took place in housing projects in suburban France in 2005, Denis Darzacq photographed ordinary-looking young men and women on desolate city streets seemingly floating in mid-air or plunging to the ground. In actuality, the subjects in the photographs are hip-hop dancers and athletes carefully directed, caught suspended in motion as they launch themselves into space. The title, La Chute, which translates in English to The Fall, reflects a sense of urgency and uncertainty about the plight of younger generations growing up in troubling times, not just in Paris but in all of Europe and beyond.
As much as La Chute represents disenfranchised youth, it also speaks to their energy and potential. The plasticity of these kinetic bodies attest to a certain power and resilience against the bleakness of the urban landscape. Each image is a dreamlike meditation about possibilities, desire, and expectation, posing more questions than answers.
Hyper picks up on La Chute while explicitly focusing on the question of consumerism, which hovers in the background of the artist’s previous work. Darzacq explores the connecting power and the limits of a consumer product; here the critique is more biting. Hyper opposes bodies in movement and the saturated, standardised space of mass distribution outlets. In this totally commercial setting, the body’s leap expresses the freedom and unhampered choice of its movement. It is a clear challenge to the marketing strategies that seek to control our behaviour. Some of the figures, glowing with an aura, impose glory and give a sense of spirituality in total contrast with the temples of consumption in which they are found.