Among the many exciting events happening at Les Recontres d’Arles Photographie Festival is the 2012 Discovery Award. Prestigious headmasters and teachers from all over the world have nominated those they feel most inspiring within contemporary photography. POSIT+TIVE reviews three of these emerging artists.
Palomäki’s works are surprising in both their simplicity and beauty. As Time Consumes Us is an open door into places and people that have an unnerving intimacy about them. Whether capturing young boys at a Russian military school or simply a self portrait with her father, Palomäki does not invade the world around her but invite others into it. Claiming that a portrait of some one else is somehow always a portrait of herself, the vulnerability of her photographs reminds us of the significance of humanity and the preciousness of time.
Nadège Mériau : Tunisia
Mériau’s interest in our conscious and subconscious notions of dwellings, home and Eden seeks answers in unexpected places. The surreal, visceral landscapes are actually large format photographs of various foods, the lens exploring nether regions we do not think of as possible terrains. The meta typographies of these minute worlds somehow makes us more conscious of our own smallness in the universe. The alien visions are both repulsive and inviting, making the invisible something infinite.
Jaana Maijala : Finland
Challenging the interpretive quality of light and darkness, positive and negative, Maijala’s series Weight of Experience contains continual opposing harmonies. The large scale prints are photographs of pencil drawings, the sketches creating jagged masses that hang like mountains in their white surroundings. The artist’s illustrations are a method for expressing the trials and miracles of everyday life while the photographs themselves release these feelings onto a much deeper horizon. It is the combination of mediums that so successfully oppose and reveal much more than one process could alone.
The 2012 Discovery Award is showing at the Arles Photography Festival from the 2nd of July until the 23rd of September.