Unseen Amsterdam 2022 — Selections
A while has passed since we published our last article. During these last two months we have been working on implementing new things on our platform which will be launched very soon.
We are coming back extremely excited by what’s happening in the contemporary scene and with a short review of one of our favourite European fairs dedicated exclusively to photography: Unseen Amsterdam. 65 exhibitors arrived in the Dutch capital and came together around the iconic circular design of the Westergas venue. In terms of distribution, the particularity of this fair is that there is no distinction between young and established galleries, creating interesting dynamics between them.
Unseen’s online catalogue allowed us to have a little sneak peek of the works that have been exhibited this year and we’ve been able to prepare a shortlist of our favourite picks! As always we hope you enjoy this selection and don’t forget to follow us to be updated on our upcoming news!
For the very first time, Nature Morte Gallery presents Bharat Sikka’s latest series Coming Through In Waves. Conceived by Sikka during the 90s, the series started from an attentive observation of the Indian youth, its culture and the exploration of its identity.
His images represent a sensitive and warm approach to issues that currently affect the young Indian generations, such as sexuality, identity and psychology. Moving between traditional habits and capitalism behaviours, Coming Through In Waves addresses these apparently two divergent ways of seeing life in India.
Chinese-American artist Shen Wei has been defining his series since 2009 when he began to explore his intimacy by taking self-portraits which he combined with landscapes and still-life shots.
SinArts presented a solo booth combining his self-portraits with images of water and natural elements. In his ‘classical’ images Shen Wei portrays himself in the intimacy of his own private space, exploring the correlation between freedom and its limits. Shen Wei often immerses himself in water which refers to the fragility of oneself and being, at the same time, in between two worlds.
Photography can definitely be therapeutic. It is a medium that can help to understand different processes and changes. Since she was 16, Laura Hospes has been photographing herself as a way of finding out more about her inner struggles.
The images that came from this introspective analysis are raw, intense and show the intimacy of a young woman who has been dealing with mental health difficulties. The exaggerated foreshortening in this particular image accentuates the dramatism and the emotional character related to this particular state of mind.
Together with the launch of the book of the same title published by Trolley Books, Sorry I Gave Birth I Disappeared But Now I’m Back, Erika Deak Gallery exhibited works by Andi Galdi Vinko in a great solo presentation.
Hungarian photographer Andi Galdi Vinko explored her recent maternity reflecting its physical but also the psychological changes that she experienced. From a very honest perspective, the images reveal her most intimate emotions whilst she documents sensitively her surroundings and new life as a mother.
Marwan Bassiouni’s views highlight the rich multiculturalism that exists in Europe. Starting from the artist’s double cultural background, Bassiouni shows how Islam is represented and perceived inside a Western context.
New British Views is the continuation of other similar long-term series that he has developed in order to rediscover surfaces of the landscape from an alternative perspective. A detailed composed image from an Islamic interior frames a British landscape on the outside, exposing how several cultures can coexist together.
Our homes and domestic lives are an extension of our identity. Human beings shape their private spaces in order to create a safe environment that matches their preferences. For melanie bonajo, these relationships between the individual and the space are related to fundamental existential issues.
melanie bonajo has been working on the Furniture Bondage Series since 2009. The images combine nude bodies with common objects, producing hybrid figures. The result are forms that mix natural and artificial features associated with the potential advances of our contemporary societies.
Sayuri Ichida’s last series Absentee was created during the lockdown period. During these past years, she began to reflect on existence, its durability and solitude. Due to the limitation of human contact, she had the opportunity to work on past traumas such as the loss of her mother when she was a teenager.
As a succession of concepts, the series relates to multiple feelings that came out of this crisis. It shows Ichida’s emotional difficulties and how isolation reminds us how mortal and fragile we are.
Alongside many other interesting artists, Ingrid Deuss Gallery presented a short selection of works by Isabel Miquel Arques accompanied by her last book Beyond Borders. Isabel began this series in 2013 as a way of experimenting with materiality in photography.
At first sight, the study of the medium drove her to approach prints as physical objects, combining photography with transparencies, adding textures and introducing tactility. From this point of view, images are treated similarly to sculptures and understood as a whole process of experimentation in which multiple senses are required to appreciate the work.