September 20th- 22nd, 2019
UNSEEN Amsterdam, 8th edition
From 20 – 22 September, visitors will discover photography from 53 international galleries, alongside an eclectic mix of Exhibitions, On-site Projects and Talent Development programmes.
Among the premiering work, emerging artists David Uzochukwu (b. 1998, AT/NG), will present his photographic series Drown in My Magic exploring race through surrealistic imagery, and Elizabeth Gabrielle Lee (b. 1994, SG), will present new work that subverts the orientalist gaze by constructing scenes found in colonial literature. Alongside this, established artists such as Roger Ballen (b. 1950, SA), Dana Lixenberg (b. 1964, NL), Joana Choumali (b. 1974, CI), Lorenzo Vitturi (b. 1980, IT), Marcelo Brodsky (b. 1954, AR) and Melanie Bonajo (b. 1978, NL) will all also be showing previously unseen work.
Other premiering highlights include 2017 ING Unseen Talent Award winner Andrea Grützner, (b. 1984, DE) who will be exhibiting her new complete series Hive and Bharat Sikka (b. 1973, IN) from Indian gallery Nature Morte will be premiering The Sapper, a personal project about his father.
As part of the 2019 Exhibitions programme, this year’s artists will explore topics from migration and post-colonialism, to feminism, religion and virtual reality. Within their individual approaches, they challenge common perceptions, make different voices visible, and question visual culture.
Vortex of Infinity – Tabita Rezaire
Curated by Unseen’s Artistic Director Marina Paulenka, the exhibition Vortex of Infinity will present three video installations by French-born Guyanese new media artist Tabita Rezaire. These works are Deep Down Tidal, revealing water’s power as an interface for information and communication, Satellite Devotion, a call to align with the rhythms of the Moon, and Ultra Wet – Recapitulation, questioning the western impulse to reduce the world to binaries: man-woman, masculine-feminine, good-bad, light-dark, strong-weak, life-death etc. Tabita’s cross-dimensional practice envisions network sciences – organic, electronic and spiritual – as healing technologies to serve the shift towards heart consciousness. Navigating digital, corporeal and ancestral memory as sites of struggles, she delves into scientific imaginaries to tackle the pervasive matrix of coloniality that affect the songs of our body-mind-spirits.
Woven Matters will present a selection of contemporary artists combining textiles and photography within their practices. With different visual strategies, the works on show explore juxtapositions between the tactility of materials and the two-dimensionality of photographic images. Through fabric and thread, the featured artists weave common themes of family and selfhood, establishing new narratives on cultural identity and heritage. This exhibition is divided into two parts. One celebrates this year’s collaboration between Unseen and LagosPhoto, where the work of artists Joana Choumali (b. 1974, CI) and Zohra Opoku (b. 1976, DE/GH) are placed in conversation with each other. Both artists use textile as a way to connect their personal histories to their work, as well as to conceptualise Africa and the African diaspora.
The other exhibition presents a group of emerging artists, offering an overview of other artistic practices that use textile and the medium of photography in relation to the themes of identity and heritage. The artists presented are Luján Agusti (b. 1986, AR), Lucie Khahoutian (b. 1990, AM), Mous Lamrabat (b. 1983, MA), Elena Subach (b. 1980, UA), Leonard Suryajaya (b. 1988, ID) and artist duo Inka (b.1985, FI) & Niclas Lindergård (b. 1984, SE).
Lumix Meets Beyond 2020 By Japanese Photographers #7
Lumix Meets Beyond 2020 by Japanese Photographers #7 features the work of six emerging Japanese artists. In response to the theme ‘Over to another parallel world’, these young talents choose to face our history head-first and attempt to find new forms of expression in photography. What they see is neither a pre-existing reality nor fictional, it is another parallel world. Shedding light on their bold and unique creations, this exhibition offers a stage to these up-and-coming artists, showcasing their work to the international photography community. Featuring: Ayako Ishiba, Naoyuki Hata, So Mitsuya, Kazuma Obara, Miko Okada, and Hayahisa Tomiyasu.
A Global Sense of Place – Felicity Hammond
Felicity Hammond’s fascination with digitally-rendered architectural propositions inspired her project A Global Sense of Place, which focuses on the material collision between quasi-photographic images and local urban realities. Tearing, folding, sun-bleaching and rephotographing, Hammond re-prints her work onto surfaces commonly used in billboard advertisements. The project includes photographs taken in cities considered to have a ‘global’ identity and was adjusted for this site specific installation.
Parallel to being exhibited at Unseen Amsterdam, the series A Global Sense of Place by Felicity Hammond will also be on show on advertising pillars throughout Amsterdam from 9 – 22 September. Through this project, re-enter the cityscape that it seeks to critique.
Unseen Amsterdam’s three-day annual speakers programme aims to inspire and educate by triggering questions and provoking thought on some of the most pressing subjects surrounding contemporary image-making. This year the Living Room is organised in collaboration with LagosPhoto and V&A, bringing together photographers, industry professionals, and scholars from across the globe. Speakers include Azubuike Nwagbogu (Founder/Director, LagosPhoto), Elena Aguido (Artistic Director of SAVVY Contemporary), Artur Walther (Founder of The Walther Collection), Marina Tanguy (Founder of MTART Agency) and Margriet Schavemaker (Artistic Director, Amsterdam Museum), as well as Artist Talks from Dana Lixenberg and Marcelo Brodsky. This project has been developed by Unseen Foundation.
Hosted for the first time at Westergas’ Transformatorhuis, this year’s Book Market will be bigger and better than ever. With 85 independent publishers presenting their latest titles, will be the place to meet the creative forces of the photobook industry. The shortlisted selection of entries to the 2019 Unseen Dummy Award are also on display, and the winner, whose book will be published in spring 2020, will be announced on 20 September in the Living Room. Book Market presents more than 32 photobook launches and more than 41 signing sessions throughout the weekend, accompanied by multiple presentations by artists of their books at the Book Market Talks site. Some of the highlights will include: Fw:Books, Elspeth Diederix, When Red Disappears; META/BOOKS, Małgorzata Stankiewicz, Lassen; MACK, Lisa Barnard, The Canary and The Hammer; the(M) éditions, Miho Kajioka, So it goes & Hideyuki Ishibashi, Other Voices; CONVOKE, Ina Jang, Utopia Centerfolds At Play. The special events of the Book Market will include, among others, Rob Hornstra’s & Arnold van Bruggen’s presentation of the upcoming project The Europeans.