Decadent, extravagant, obscene: the great Czech photographer Jan Saudek together with Sarah Saudek – his model, wife and muse. Jan Saudek was Jewish and having been born in Prague, he lived through the horrors of deportation during World War II. On returning to Prague he was forced to work in secret, hidden in a cellar, where he developed dreams and fantasies whilst living under a rather grey and pragmatic dictatorship. In the seventies he began to “correct” his black and white prints tinting them with watercolours. In his exclusion this “underground man” created an art of dreams, beautifully sad and light: erotic in the most spirited and interesting way. The works of Saudek, are as fascinating and mysterious as Prague itself and have made him one of the greatest living authors. A pillar of twentieth century photographic history. The surreal world of Jan Saudek is a room with plaster peeling from the walls, which filters the infinite. The flesh of the annoyingly imperfect bodies, once exposed to his eye and brush are fashioned in to the unique and extraordinary, which only art can give to the underworld, by touches of melancholy and beauty. For her part Sarah Saudek tells of infinite decadence of femininity, that is impossible to contain or restrict with a moralizing interpretive palate.
Evolution is an advertising campaign launched by Unilever in 2006 as part of its Dove Campaign for Real Beauty, to promote the newly created Dove Self-Esteem Fund. The centre of the Unilever campaign is a 75-second spot produced by Ogilvy & Mather in Toronto, Canada. The piece was first displayed online on 6 October 2006, and was later broadcast as a television and cinema spot in the Netherlands and the Middle East. The ad was created from the budget left over from the earlier Daughters campaign, and was intended to be the first in a series of such online-focused spots by the company. Later pieces include Onslaught and Amy.Evolution was directed by Canadian director Yael Staav and Tim Piper, with sound design handled by the Vapor Music Group, and post-production by SoHo.
Technological convergence is the tendency for different technological systems to evolve toward performing similar tasks. Convergence can refer to previously separate technologies such as voice (and telephony features), data (and productivity applications), and video that now share resources and interact with each other synergistically.The rise of digital communication in the late 20th century has made it possible for media organizations (or individuals) to deliver text, audio, and video material over the same wired, wireless, or fiber-optic connections. At the same time, it inspired some media organizations to explore multimedia delivery of information. This digital convergence of news media, in particular, was called “Mediamorphosis” by researcher Roger Fidler ,in his 1997 book by that name. Today, we are surrounded by a multi-level convergent media world where all modes of communication and information are continually reforming to adapt to the enduring demands of technologies, “changing the way we create, consume, learn and interact with each other”. Convergence in this instance is defined as the interlinking of computing and other information technologies, media content, and communication networks that has arisen as the result of the evolution and popularization of the Internet as well as the activities, products and services that have emerged in the digital media space. The Italian artist Piera Gemelli uses the concept of Mediamorphosis to speak about the complexity of the human body.“In this hybrid space the body for its ambivalence and its formation as opening sense, is the protagonist. It is a body media. Land exchange, porous material that absorbs and filters the voltage of the codes that are written in it, opening the continuous transformation and hybridization of languages. It is the body described by Betty Marenko in Hybridizations, or “polymorphic expression and mutation of a multi-faceted, […] which arises from the contamination of meat and technologies, archaisms and metal, leather and ink, […] universal transmitter that makes it possible to ‘data processing experience, thus reducing the complexity and uncertainty of the world around them. In particular, the object of my research is the Feminine, uterine enveloping space but also devouring it therefore becomes a metaphor of liquidity and voracious media. Women Arachnida and Medusee, bodies in transit, that they carry the traces, the bodies of the monstrosity of desire, sirens assembled and fragmented that lead us in paths of desire wandering zapping media. Hybrid creatures of chaos after attending the banquet of the body fragmented, reassembled in the new unit of Mediamorphosis the Visible.”
Guernica is a painting by Pablo Picasso. It was created in response to the bombing of Guernica, a Basque Country village in northern Spain by German and Italian warplanes at the behest of the Spanish Nationalist forces, on 26 April 1937, during the Spanish Civil War. The Spanish Republican government commissioned Picasso to create a large mural for the Spanish display at the Paris International Exposition at the 1937 World’s Fair in Paris.
Guernica shows the tragedies of war and the suffering it inflicts upon individuals, particularly innocent civilians. This work has gained a monumental status, becoming a perpetual reminder of the tragedies of war, an anti-war symbol, and an embodiment of peace. On completion Guernica was displayed around the world in a brief tour, becoming famous and widely acclaimed. This tour helped bring the Spanish Civil War to the world’s attention.
Helping a White Man Relearn Joie de Vivre
“Les Intouchables,” having broken box office records in France, arrives in the United States with a faithfully translated title — “The Intouchables” — that is not quite English. American audiences looking for a suitable French name for this ingratiating comedy of cross-racial friendship might settle on “Déjà Vu,” since it is a story we have seen many times before.
Though maybe not quite like this, or at least not in a while. “The Intouchables,” directed by Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano and based on a true story, is about two men — one rich, uptight and white; the other poor, exuberant and black — who become best pals in spite of their differences.The pallid aristocrat, Philippe (François Cluzet), is paralyzed from the neck down as the result of a hang-gliding accident and lives in a state of opulent ennui attended by a nervous staff and is ignored by his petulant adolescent daughter. He is a difficult boss, and his newest employee, a streetwise hoodlum named Driss (Omar Sy) does not look as though he will last long in the job. Not that Driss has much ambition to play nurse for some grouchy old invalid; he applies for the position only so he can continue to collect government benefits. Moving into Philippe’s mansion, Driss steps away from a background of poverty, family dysfunction and trouble with the police. Under his boss’s stern gaze and imperious tutelage he starts to acquire a work ethic and a sense of discipline. In exchange, he helps Philippe discover his appetite for life and his capacity for joy.
How does Driss do this? In the usual ways. He flirts shamelessly with the boss’s secretary and gives Philippe’s daughter the stern talking-to she needs. He introduces Philippe to the pleasures of marijuana, encourages him to start dating and loosens up a stuffy chamber-music soiree with some funky music.
It is possible to summarize the experience of watching “The Intouchables” in nine words: You will laugh; you will cry; you will cringe. The Intouchables is much more than a buddy movie and American sensitivities to race and culture are just that, American, and don’t necessarily apply to the rest of the world.
The film is also very much about the fact that people deserve to be loved, yes those who are disabled, old, lesbian, gay and so on. In America the only people who deserve to be loved are the surgically enhanced, pouty lipped, botoxed, plastic fantastic monsters to populate our screens. This film is warm, funny and accepting of humanity in all its forms and in all its imperfect beauty.
Quintin Mills is a South African based photographer who in addition to his innovative lighting, uses excellent people skills to know just how to get the best from you to produce his amazing photography for weddings, events, corporate portraits, and everything else he shoots. He started ‘The Imperfect Project’ to produce beautiful photographs of women of all shapes and sizes, young or old, big or small, with tattoos and scars, those who love their body and those who really don’t. He said ‘The idea was to provided these women with an opportunity to challenge themselves, end a period of self doubt or recrimination and to experience something that would make them feel empowered and ready to take on the world. A new beginning.The project is about everyday women confronting the issues they have with their body and instead of holding on to their perceptions, to look at their body objectively and to see it’s beauty. When we realise we are all beautiful in our own way, we can move from feeling “imperfect” to “I’m perfect” and I can do anything!’.
The title bespeaks an unwarranted modesty as Levi-Montalcini, co-winner of the 1986 Nobel Prize in medicine, reviews her life and work. An elegant writer, she highlights events and personalities that have altered her life. She examines her family and youth, neither Catholic nor Jewish, but dynamic and creative; her schooling and attempts at research in anguished war-torn Italy; her successful research in the United States; and finally, her work in establishing the Laboratory of Cell Biology of the National Research Council of Italy. She does not reveal her soul, but rather a spirit of determination against social and political forces. Imperfection – says Montalcini – has always allowed continuous mutations of that wonderful and very imperfect mechanism that is the human brain. I believe that the imperfection goes with human nature more than perfection.
Daido Moryiama is a Japanese photographer noted for his images depicting the breakdown of traditional values in post-war Japan. Born October 10, 1938 in Ikeda, Osaka. Daido Moriyama studied photography under Takeji Iwamiya before moving to Tokyo in 1961 to work as an assistant of Eikoh Hosoe. He produced a collection of photographs, Nippon gekijō shashinchō, which showed the darker sides of urban life and the less-seen parts of cities. In them, he attempted to show how life in certain areas was being left behind the other industrialised parts. Though not exclusively, Moriyama predominantly takes high contrast, grainy, black and white photographs within the Shinjuku area of Tokyo, often shot from odd angles. The images he captures often show everyday people and everyday things in a manner not to be found in the average Tokyo tourist guidebook. Whether by using blur or cropping, Moriyama’s bleak and lonely black-and-white pictures have garnered him the reputation as one of Japan’s great modern photographers. The people of Moriyama’s work are often faceless, covered in shadow or obscured by blur. It is not unusual for a backside – a couple descending stairs, for example – to be the image’s main element. Unlike Araki, who generally uses color photography to target women in various settings, Moriyama’s focus is capturing Shinjuku’s blend of old, new, and unpredictable in monochrome.
The Museum of Bad Art (MOBA) is a privately owned museum whose stated aim is “to celebrate the labor of artists whose work would be displayed and appreciated in no other forum”. It has three branches, one in Dedham, Massachusetts, another in nearby Somerville, and a third in Brookline, Massachusetts. Its permanent collection includes 500 pieces of “art too bad to be ignored”, 25 to 35 of which are on public display at any one time. MOBA was founded in 1994, after antique dealer Scott Wilson showed a painting he had recovered from the trash to some friends, who suggested starting a collection. Within a year, receptions held in Wilson’s friends’ home were so well-attended that the collection needed its own viewing space. The museum then moved to the basement of a theater in Dedham. Explaining the reasoning behind the museum’s establishment, co-founder Jerry Reilly said in 1995: “While every city in the world has at least one museum dedicated to the best of art, MOBA is the only museum dedicated to collecting and exhibiting the worst.” To be included in MOBA’s collection, works must be original and have serious intent, but they must also have significant flaws without being boring; curators are not interested in displaying deliberate kitsch. MOBA has been mentioned in dozens of off-the-beaten-path guides to Boston, featured in international newspapers and magazines, and has inspired several other collections throughout the world that set out to rival its own visual atrocities. Deborah Solomon of The New York Times Magazine noted that the attention the Museum of Bad Art receives is part of a wider trend of museums displaying “the best bad art”. The museum has been criticized for being anti-art, but the founders deny this, responding that its collection is a tribute to the sincerity of the artists who persevered with their art despite something going horribly wrong in the process. According to co-founder Marie Jackson, “We are here to celebrate an artist’s right to fail, gloriously.”
In the 1930s America is suffering for the Great Depression. Many people are jobless and homeless, and everybody is sad and worried for the difficult economic situation. Mendez is the charismatic master of a small circus, the Butterfly Circus, and he leads his troupe through Southern California; along the way, they perform – sometimes for free – to bring some light in the dull lives of people. One evening, they stop at a funfair, where there are carousels, games and other entertainment. At the Carnival Side Show Mendez meets Will, the main attraction. He has no limbs and is on show as a trick of Nature together with other odd characters (the Tattooed Man, the Bearded Woman). Will is bitter and unhappy but after meeting Mendez he decides to leave the Carnival and manages to hide on one of the Butterfly circus trucks to escape. People in the circus welcome him but Mendez tells Will he must find his own way to become part of the act. Will starts to know his new friends and learns that many of them have a sad story: Mendez has given them a second chance in life. One day Will accidentally realizes that he can swim, so he decides to perform a difficult act in the Circus: he must climb a tall pole, from the top of which he then dives into a small tank full of water. Will is now happy as he is in the show not because of his odd aspect but because of what he is and what he can do.
Britain’s Missing Top Model was a British Reality TV modelling show aired on BBC Three. The première episode aired on 1 July 2008. The show courted controversy, with many speculating that the show made disability a spectator event.
The show followed eight young women with disabilities, who competed for a modelling contract (which included a photo shoot with Rankin and a cover photo in Marie Claire). Aired over a period of five weeks the women lived together and competed in a series of challenges and photo shoots. Each week at least one contestant was sent home.
While most cultures have gained an attachment to perfection when it comes to teeth, in Japan, girls are finding snaggle teeth to be preferable. Yaeba actually means double tooth, it’s used to describe a dental oddity that occurs when two molars crowd the canines and create an effect of one of the teeth being pushed forward and another back. It occurs naturally because of a delay in baby teeth, or a mouth is abnormally small for the size of the teeth, creating crowding. We actually have seen snaggle tooth occur in American celebrities. Kirsten Dunst for example, loves her snaggle teeth and it is now seen to be part of her image. Part of the popularity is because of celebrities having kept their yaeba teeth; it also offers a youth like appearance. The most popular reason people give is that it makes girls seem approachable and less than perfect, so men prefer it and it is the actual driving force.
“I tried to capture the beauty of both the human body’s figure and its motion.
The figure in the image, which is formed into something similar to a sculpture, is created by combining 10,000 individual photographs of a dancer.
By putting together uninterrupted individual moments, the resulting image as a whole will appear to be something different from what actually exists.
With regard to these two viewpoints, a connection can be made to a human being’s perception of presence in life”.
After some magazines started talking about an alleged weight gain, the singer Lady GaGa opened up about her struggle with eating disorders. She also posted on her social network some photos in which she proudly show off her curvier body. This is the first step of her association Born This Way Foundation’ new campaign called Body Revolution 2013. This campaign is willing to celebrate young boys and girls’ body by posting a picture of their imperfection with explanatory captions.
Thousands of fans joined her battle cry by sharing photos of missing teeth, scars, evidences of eating disorder and so on.
Symmetry is a Greek word that means “right proportion, balance”. In art this concept is linked to beauty, especially during the Renaissance, when the most famous human symmetry question was the Vitruvian Man by Leonardo Da Vinci. Recently many scientific studies have suggested how symmetry exerts a strong attraction in humans because the human being prefers instinctively regularity. The photographer Julian Wolkensteindecided to dispel this myth by what he called “Echoism”. By using computer he carried out 11 digital portraits that divided in two parts, the right one and the left one, after that he assembled them but in a different and specular way from the original, so that he created two new portraits. Symmetry can be both right and left side, the result is always the same: perfection is far away from these new creatures. Echoism shows the alteration of identity, the monstrosity of the double and the acknowledgment of an imperfect perfection.
We are used to see these celebrities posing on the covers of the most important magazines from all over the world. As we see this show of perfect beauty, we would think that they spend the whole day acting in tv shows and working out in gym.
They are the image of “perfection” for young girls and women.
But lately seems like they want to destroy this halo of perfection by publishing variety of photos in which they show off what they actually do during their free time. What surprises the most is that for the first time ever these girls don’t wear any make up! By sharing their private photos on social networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram , they are becoming closer and closer to their fans thanks to the more familiar contact with the so called “followers”.
Is that a pursuit for imperfection or a trick to receive the assent from imperfect/normal girls?