Shay Kun grew up in an environment that smelled heavily of poppy, turpentine and linseed oil. And by the time he was perfecting his first vocabulary he already started differentiating the depth of oxide red from the earthy tone of burnt sienna and identifying the radiance of cadmium yellow from the calmness of cerulean blue. Well, to be fair, much of this learning was absorbed unconsciously by him from his immediate environment after he was born in 1974, Israel, to parents who are themselves noted artists. Naturally, his creative enthusiasm in those days knew no boundaries. He graduated from Bezalel Academy of Art and Design, Jerusalem, Israel in 1998 with a BA in Fine Arts and followed that up with a Masters Degree completed from Goldsmiths College, London, England, 2000. He felt the atmosphere in Goldsmiths College to be intellectually stimulating but finding his own voice needed much contemplation from his part. In the end, after much mulling over, he did manage crafting a unique pathway for himself that he may call his own. To some extent, an amalgamation of his mother’s optimism and tender–heartedness showcased by her art and his father’s way of interrogating the darkness and decay of the age through his paintings could be seen into Shay Kun’s work.
Jody MacDonald learned to appreciate remote landscapes and foreign cultures early in her life. A childhood spent in Saudi Arabia has been a big help in her effort of deciphering an exotic climate. So, now when she paraglides over a forgotten piece of land or holds a tête–à–tête with a little known soul in some remote corner of the globe she feels completely at home. The photographer traverses the land, delves deep into the water and darts into the cool gale for locating and capturing that elusive photographic moment that seems wonderfully ‘perfect’. But being the purist that she is, it is extremely difficult for her to be satisfied with her craft and she continues to hone her skills. In 2006, Jody, in order to satisfy her thirst of both art and adventure, conceived The Best Odyssey. She and her partner, Gavin McClurg, trot the whole world sailing, surfing or spearfishing on the Pacific and Indian Ocean. Needless to say, these wild expeditions make Jody blissfully happy. For Jody it could aptly be said that, ‘Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature.’
The name of Broken Hill, located in the far west of outback New South Wales, Australia, seems almost ironical. The wide vista spread till the horizon is covered by cupric red soil. Sunlight plays all day long on the undulating plain that is interspersed by the rocky ridges. The eerie silence of the desert is broken only by the vehicles journeying to and fro and the heavy machineries at work, unearthing the precious metal both above and beneath the earth’s crust. But that is not all. If you strain your ears long enough you will hear the voices of working men and women; the sound of their bustling activities; their unified chatter, music and even sighs. Bring your ears close to the ground and listen, for the earth may tell you stories that heaven knows nothing of.
On this sun soaked forsaken land another person is earnestly shifting the Golden Soil to reveal the tales of Broken Hill. Camera in hand, Sébastien Millier is busy unravelling the precious chronicle of this rich land. His efforts, as documented in Golden Soil, earned him awards and admirations from Prix de la Photographie, Paris, International Photography Awards (IPA) and Moran Contemporary Photographic Prize, Sydney in 2013.
Sébastien Millier’s photographic exploits do not end with Golden Soil by any means. His commissioned project Pay With A Kiss also received the Caples Award, 2013 and accolades worldwide. From Nuit Blanche to Debris, Sébastien Millier’s peering eyes explore the cycle of life and decay and raise some serious questions about what lies Beneath the Surface. Learn about this curious traveller and photographer’s journey from his own mouth.
Whether it is from his Window Seat or while traversing the diverse landscape of Tanzania, Africa, Martin Klimek keeps a close watch on his surroundings, so that, nothing escapes the roving eyes of his faithful camera. Armed with an insatiable curiosity of experiencing the motley of colours presented by people and places closer home or away from it and an equally commendable open–mindedness, Martin Klimek continuously documents life as he views it. His photographic essays depict an irresistible élan vital that not only draws the attention of the audience but also engages into a conversation, albeit mute to the outside world, with them. At the end of the day when one finishes glancing over the pages of his album one senses how united everyone is in joys and pathos; it feels that one has just woke from a deep reverie; it seems one was treading the long forgotten dusty lanes of one’s own memory lane than shifting the pages to see some ‘unknown’ faces and ‘foreign’ environment. If for an artist the highest achievement is to transcend time then this San Francisco based photographer is surely sculpting his way towards the right direction. For, his work made his viewers aware of, ‘Where the voice of the wind calls our wandering feet / Through echoing forest and echoing street / With lutes in our hands ever–singing we roam / All men are our kindred, the world is our home.’
Mark Tipple is a documentary filmmaker & photographer from Sydney, Australia and over the last few years has been hailed worldwide for his craft. But much like the vast expanse of the ocean that he has fallen in love with over the years, true appreciation for his art comes from understanding the depth of it. With camera in hand he filmed and photographed the touching story of the youth of Kigamboni Community Center, Tanzania; the aftermath of the much hyped Jakartan dream; the village of Navakai, Fiji ravaged by natural disaster; and the vulnerability of the great white shark in Guadalupe island, Mexico coordinated with his brother Luke Tipple, the marine biologist. Very recently he extended his support for another noteworthy cause led by Surfers against Sewage for their ‘Protect our Waves’ campaign.
Widely appreciated, ‘The Underwater Project’ has added a new dimension in exploring the violence or the passivity of blue and its relationship with man. Mark Tipple’s own words are the bathymetry of the profoundness of his passion.