Mutual sights by Juul Hondius at Yours Gallery

Photos by Juul Hondius
At Yours Gallery

Afghan immigrant near Calais (after ‘Blue Minotaur’ by Richard Patterson) by Juul Hondius 2009

Yours Gallery is pleased to announce the exhibition Mutual sights by Dutch photographer Juul Hondius from January 14 until February 27, 2011.

The opening of the exhibition will be on Thursday, January 13, at 19:00 ( 7pm).

The exhibition by Juul Hondius at Yours Gallery is showing 20 large cibrachrome photographs, covering the photographer’s work from 1999 to 2010. It is the artist’s first solo exhibition in Poland.

The works of Juul Hondius seem familiar at first glance – they are a series of images we remember as illustrations or news stories seen in the past. They depict refugees, exiles, explosions, accidents, terror and insecurity. The artist presents a catalogue of scenes which talk about the contemporary world. The Dutch photographer explores the documentary aesthetics, making his images look like documents misleading the audience into thinking the images are snapshots made in the midst of dramatic events which people are so used to seeing every day. Through the imitation of sad icons, their universality and our being so used to them the artists reveals to the attentive viewer a small set of clichés, repetitions and stereotypes which shape our view of the world.
Hondius turns out to be a quick-to-learn student of artists such as Jeff Wall or Cindy Sherman who gave up on photographing reality replacing it with staged situations with the intent to focus on certain phenomena and to highlight their importance to the viewer. In line with this approach, the Dutch artist knows how to perfectly conceal the stitches of his manipulation making us believe he witnessed the events portrayed by the media. This technique makes us mistake the staged images for real documentary photographs. For Hondius both the image itself and its perception become a game engaging everyone involved.
The manipulation is done for a purpose. Despite assuming these images are true, the viewer cannot situate them in time and space. Deprived of standard captions they function as archetypal images and the people and objects depicted may be treated as symbols. By doing this the artist wishes to expose our habits of perception as it turns out we seem to perceive the world according to a set of universal codes.
The political theme is another important aspect of Hondius’s works. The subjects targeted by the photographer centre around popular themes of ongoing debates about frontiers, refugees and their rights as well as the threats posed by modern civilisation. The artist’s activities are rooted in current events covered by the media. His work is not only a pursuit of sensation but more of a persistent attempt at deconstructing the sensational approach of photographers, +to show what it is that makes up the contemporary photographic panorama.

Juul Hondius (1970) lives and works in Amsterdam. He graduated at The Royal Academy of Fine Arts, in The Hague and at FAMU, Film & TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts, in Prague.

Busfront#1 by Juul Hondius 2006

Cover by Juul Hondius 2010

Richie by Juul Hondius 2006

Wheels#2 by Juul Hondius 2009

Whiteout by Juul Hondius

Opening date: 13 January 2011 @ 19:00 h ( 7 pm)
Date: 14 January – 27 February 2011
Opening hours: Tue-Sun 12:00 – 7:00 pm, Thu 12:00 – 8:00 pm
Phone: +48 22 8909500
Foundation Yours Gallery
Krakowskie Przedmiescie 33
00-071 Warsaw

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