William Klein's Bus, part of our round-up of must-see photography in September 2019

Must-see photography in September 2019

Welcome to our round-up of must-see photography in September 2019.

This month we enter the world of William Klein and examine the underbelly of artificial intelligence.

An older woman in a jumper looks to the side of the camera
With the Name of a Flower © Vera Hadzhiyska

With the Name of a Flower

Bulgarian artist Vera Hadzhiyska’s solo exhibition explores the forced name changes of Bulgarian Muslims and their effects on people today.

It showcases new work including a multi-channel sound installation, video installations, self-portraits and archival documents.

Hadzhiyska’s work questions how historical events have affected the cultural, religious and national identity of the people who experienced them and their descendants.

It explores how memories have been preserved, or purposefully omitted, from family narratives, creating fractured family histories and resulting in a shift of identity and sense of belonging of the younger generation.

The show is a culmination of Hadzhiyska’s MA Photography degree at the University of Portsmouth.

With the Name of a Flower, Four Corners, September 4 to September 7.

New Order: Art, Product, Image 1976-1995

This group exhibition surveys identity and image in British art, culture and society between 1976 and 1995.

Selected by Michael Bracewell, it originates from a discussion about the cultural status of one of Peter Saville’s best-known works. 

The exhibition moves from Richard Hamilton’s pioneering interpretation of image, technology and process and commodity to Saville’s design for New Order’s seminal record, Blue Monday, via portraits of British society by Karen Knorr and Olivier Richon and finally, early videos by the ‘Young British Artists’.

It considers a period that covers the twilight of the pre-digital, modernist city and the dawn of the postmodern computer age. 

New Order: Art, Product, Image 1976-1995, Sprüth Magers, until September 14.

William Klein's Smoke + Veil, Painted Contacts + Photographs, included in our round-up of must-see photography in September 2019.
WILLIAM KLEIN Smoke + Veil (x3) (Vogue), Paris 1958-2010, printed 2019.
Limited edition Lightjet c-print from unique painted contact
© William Klein / Courtesy HackelBury Fine Art, London

Painted Contacts + Photographs

This exhibition centres around William Klein’s super-sized painted contacts which have been an enduring feature in museum exhibitions throughout his career.

Painted Contacts + Photographs marks the first time that these large-scale Lightjet c-prints are available to the public.

It includes previously unreleased works from the series.

The works represent the totality of Klein’s artistic practice by combining iconic aspects of his photographic, cinematographic, and painting career.

Pieces on view span iconic moments in fashion and street photography including Smoke + Veil; Muhammad Ali, Miami; and Gun 1.

At over two metres long, the super-sized painted contacts render Klein’s brush strokes larger-than-life and create a feeling of walking into his world.

Kinetic lines, circles, and crosses and bold patches of colour cut across the black and white photographs.

The action captured in the photographs – already highlighted by the multi-frame contacts – is therefore further accentuated.

Painted Contacts + Photographs, Hackelbury, September 13 until November 2.

An installation view from Still Undead at Nottingham Contemporary
Installation view (Robyn Beeche and Al McDonald), bauhaus imaginista: Still Undead, HKW Berlin 2019.
Photo: Silke Briel.

Still Undead: Popular Culture in Britain Beyond the Bauhaus

This exhibition explores how Bauhaus’ ideas and teaching lived on in Britain, via pop culture and art schools.

It coincides with the centenary of the pioneering art and design school’s founding in Weimar.

Spanning the 1920s to the 90s, Still Undead narrates the eclectic and fragmented ways the Bauhaus’ legacy has been transmitted and transformed.

Including works by some 50 artists, designers and musicians, it is structured around six loose chronological groupings – moving from the Bauhaus to British art schools, from the high street to the nightclub and beyond.

Still Undead: Popular Culture in Britain Beyond the Bauhaus, Nottingham Contemporary, September 21 until January 12, 2020.

Images of so-called unusual people make one large picture in Trevor Paglen's exploration of AI, part of our round-up of must see photography in September 2019
Trevor Paglen, Paglen Studio Research Image, ImageNet Class, ‘Anomaly, Unusual Person’ ©Trevor Paglen, courtesy of the artist

From ‘Apple’ to ‘Anomaly’

Explore the underbelly of our digital world in this exhibition revealing the powerful, and often hidden, forces at play in artificial intelligence.

Trevor Paglen’s Curve commission examines how AI networks are taught to ‘see’ and ‘perceive’ the world by taking a closer look at image datasets.

Paglen has incorporated approximately 30,000 individually printed photographs, largely drawn from ImageNet, the most widely shared, publicly available dataset.

ImageNet, widely used for training AI Networks, is archived and pre-selected in categories by humans.

In some cases, the connotations of categories are uncontroversial, others, for example ‘bad person’ or ‘debtors’, are not.

These categories, when used in AI, suggest a world in which machines will be able to elicit forms of judgement against humankind.

From ‘Apple’ to ‘Anomaly’, Barbican, September 26 until February 16, 2020.

Main image: WILLIAM KLEIN, Bus 19, London 1989-2003, printed 2019. Limited edition Lightjet c-print from unique painted contact. © William Klein/courtesy HackelBury Fine Art, London.

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