Across The Globe: Artist Spotlight #8

Unseen Amsterdam
Sep 12, 2019 4:07PM

Untitled 3-1, from the series An Oscillating Shadow, 2019 © Celeste Rojas Mugica/Rolf Art

In the weeks leading up to Unseen Amsterdam 2019, we are taking a look at our participating galleries from across the globe. Next up, we head further afield to North and South America and get to know these innovative artists and galleries who will be joining us at the Fair in just over a week's time!

Catharine Clark Gallery

Catharine Clark Gallery is returning to Unseen Amsterdam with three interdisciplinary artists who address social issues through sculptural interventions and installations. Jana Sophia Nolle’s (b. 1986, DE) Living Room shines a light on the wealth disparity and housing crisis in San Francisco by placing images of makeshift shelters built by the homeless into the pristine living rooms of wealthy residences. Meanwhile, Lenka Clayton (b. 1977, UK) will exhibit her series Letters from Sculptors. Shot in museum archives, the photographs depict letters written and sent to museums by famous sculptors including Constantin Brancusi, Marcel Duchamp, and Barbara Hepworth, among others. Stephanie Syjuco (b. 1974, PH) who works at the intersection of photography, sculpture, and installation, will showcase her Neutral Calibration Studies (Ornament + Crime), a series that examines the relationship between colonialism, race, and the history of photography.

Whiteout, from the series Hard Light, 2019 © Stephanie Syjuco/Catharine Clark Gallery


EQUINOM represents artists working with interdisciplinary approaches that expand the boundaries of photo-based practices. For their debut at Unseen Amsterdam, the gallery will present Michael Lundgren (b.1974, US), who premiered his series Geomancy on the Unseen Platform. Through collaboration with artists, scientists and writers, Lundgrens’ photographs of primitive landscapes blur the line between the natural and the man-made.

Coral and Crystal on Desiccated Mud, from the series Geomancy, 2018 © Michael Lundgren/EUQINOM Gallery


New York-based gallery MIYAKO YOSHINAGA presents ground-breaking photographic talents from Japan. Yojiro Imasaka’s (b.1983, JP) photographs that reflect on the fragility of human existence. In his Trade Wind Series, Imasaka lugged his large-format camera to the island of O’ahu, and then further into the mountains, in order to capture the trade winds–a natural weather pattern on islands that have existed long before mankind. He will also be premiering a new series titled Illuminating Earth at the Fair.The gallery will also show works from Emi Anrakuji ’s (b.1963, JP) series JUST LOVE. Anrakuji considers herself an alchemist of images and a catalyst for daydreams and desires. The vignettes of photographs portraying herself and others blur the boundaries between documentary and staged photography. Posing nude, clothed, or partially dressed, Anrakuji takes a uniquely avid interest in her own body. Mikiko Hara’s (b.1967, JP) work brings a sense of both 'now' and 'then', which resonates with the viewer's fragmented memory. Documenting Tokyo, its suburbs, and the characters who inhabit them, her images provoke emotions in the viewer through nuanced facial expressions and body language.

Illuminating Earth 27, 2019 © Yojiro Imasaka/MIYAKO YOSHINAGA

Rolf Art

Based in Buenos Aires, Rolf Art will premiere two series at Unseen Amsterdam, by two artists whose practices are both rooted in the use of archival materials and a focus on socio-political issues.

Marcelo Brodsky (b.1954, AR), an artist and political activist, is currently working on a new series that revisits the legacy of revolutionary moments around the world from an Argentinian perspective. In his new series, PROVO Seeds of new ideas, Brodsky uses archival photos from Dutch photographer Cor Jaring, from Amsterdam City Archives, in order to shine a light on the revolutionary Provo movement set up in the mid-60s in Amsterdam. By adding colour and hand-written interventions to the black and white images, his series speaks for the ideals embraced by the movement, and provoking an emotional reaction in the viewer.

Also interested in collective memory, Celeste Rojas Mugica (b.1987, AR) will showcase her series based on recent historical developments in Latin America which explores the complicated distinction between fiction and documentary. Her series, An Oscillating Shadow, establishes a dialogue with her father’s photographic archive, produced between 1970 and 1989, documenting his participation in activism against the dictatorship in Chile and his eleven years of exile in Ecuador. The series, Constellations (I, II, III)/Microfilm, is a new series of photographs superimposed with slide frames and E-6 film. These works are made from a file of thousands of negatives that she found in her house as a child, and they take such name from their resemblance to images of celestial bodies.

Untitled 3-1, from the series An Oscillating Shadow, 2019 © Celeste Rojas Mugica/Rolf Art

Red Hooks Labs

Located in Brooklyn, and Downtown Los Angeles, Red Hook Labs is dedicated to supporting emerging talent globally. Labs represents artists who are catalysts for change in the photographic medium through innovative techniques and aesthetics. At Unseen Amsterdam, Cécile Smetana (b. 1986, DK) will showcase photographs which focus on themes of childhood and African Diaspora and form a universal narrative of longing, love and family life. Originally from Namibia, Kyle Weeks (b. 1992, NA) is also interested in exposing and deconstructing colonial dynamics: his depictions of Africa take a stand against whitewashed mainstream imagery. His goal is to create an alternative to the voyeuristic documentary style typically seen in Western photographic imagination of Africa and to represent diverse faces, experiences and perspectives while empowering his subjects.Inspired by her personal turmoil with cultural identity, Olya Oleinic (b. 1991, MD) is interested in the exploration of cultural normalities. Her work, which is highly stylised, is based around a specific observation or memory that molds into a different shape. The end result is a unique composition that plays with the concept of photographic truth. Interested in the aesthetics of fashion photography, Renate Ariadne van der Togt (b. 1993, NL) will exhibit work from two personal projects, which explore the overlapping themes of femininity and feminism. Her dream-like compositions combine idyllic scenery with eerie shapes and figures.

Holiday, 2019 © Cécile Smetana/Red Hook Labs

You can find out more about all the artists exhibiting at Unseen Amsterdam 2019 here.

Unseen Amsterdam