The Beautiful, New International Center of Photography Reopens at Last!

The International Center of Photography is back, big, and continues to strike a balance between the modern and the past.

The fact that New York City has two major brick and mortar foundations dedicated to the art of photography is genuinely incredible. With the reopening of the International Center of Photography (ICP) the photo industry is treated to the museum flexing its capabilities with some of the best new exhibits I’ve seen in a while at the Center. They do this by showcasing the work of photographers in significantly better ways than before. This is balanced with an atmosphere that begs to be shared by those who love photography via social media. ICP stands on its own in a much different way than Fotografiska New York. And in many ways, it feels a lot like a more modern, gentrified New York.

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This Interview Is the Only Known Recording of Robert Capa

Listening to Robert Capa speak about his work and his adventures adds a different dimension to the iconic war photographer. Image above taken by Gerda Taro in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War.

Anyone who develops an interest in photography will inevitably come across the iconic Robert Capa and his timeless work. Reading about him and his life is one thing; listening to him speak about his work and adventures is another, given the decades that have passed since his days as “the greatest war photographer in the world.” Here’s a rare 1947 radio interview with the Hungarian photographer, the only known recording that the world has of his voice.

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Henri-Cartier Bresson’s Best Decisive Moments on Display at ICP

Believe it or not, Henri-Cartier Bresson hated the marketing term “the decisive moment.”

When we speak about Bresson, we often associate him with the idea of the Decisive Moment. But as I learned on a tour of one of the newest exhibits at International Center of Photography, he actually hated that term. The exhibit itself is coined “The Decisive Moment,” but to Bresson he believed that there are many moments instead. The artistic photographer also really seems to have wished that his now famous book would have instead been called something along the lines of “Images on the Run.” Indeed, this is a bit more like what we see of Bresson’s work, at least in some of his most famous images.

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International Center of Photography’s Newest Exhibits Question Government Decisions

The International Center of Photography has two brand new exhibits that reflect on some very heartbreaking times in our country’s history.

It’s pretty commonplace for folks to question their government and the choices their government makes. As a reflection of the times, the International Center of Photography (ICP) in NYC has two new exhibits doing just that. The first portrays one of the closest and cruelest things American politicians have done: the incarceration of Japanese Americans. Then They Came for Me: Incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II is a collection of photographs from a number of Japanese photographers and includes the work from some greats such as Dorothea Lange and Ansel Adams. Yes, that’s right; the father of landscape photography even has his own section in this exhibit. This exhibit gives way to Edmund Clark: The Day The Music Died. In this exhibit, viewers should be mentally prepared to be intentionally confused and at times even irritated.

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Alexander Benz: Discovering Black and White Urban Geometry in NYC

All images by Alexander Benz. Used with permission.

“Geometry plays an important role in my life.” states photographer Alexander Benz. “I see angles, corners, shapes and curves everywhere. I often use those elements to frame my subjects to create a border other than the border given by the camera.” Mr. Benz could get this unique creative vision from his engineering education. Afterwards, he moved to NYC to study at the International Center of Photography then stuck around to work for various photographers and get a bit more of a taste for the industry. It’s there in NYC where he discovered his affinity for black and white photography and Urban Geometry.

“I often roamed the city at night, always having my camera, a Leica M6 loaded with high speed 3200 ASA film, with me.” explains Mr. Benz about his photographic journey. “Wherever I went I found situations that I had an urge to record. Not necessarily as a memory, but more for the purpose of processing what was going at a later moment.” There are many photographers who do this, actually. It’s how they learn to make sense of the world.

Why is black and white photography important to you?

Black and white photography is very important to me. This kind of photography emphasises shapes and light in a very different way than colour photography. Reducing an image to shapes of grey creates a different focus on the subject and leaves some room to fill in the rest, the way we usually experience our surrounding, by using our imagination.

What inspires you to create photographs?

I have been a photographer for more than 20 years and I love the idea that I can document the world around me by using my camera. It keeps me looking around, looking up, left and right. It is so easy to forget to do that, to let our surrounding fade in to the backdrop of everyday life.

Why is black and white photography so important to our future in the art world?

To me, black and white photography is not necessarily meant to represent reality as is. Of course it can be used in documentary photography where we are reminded what is happening around us every day, but I believe that even there it is used for a different, even if subconsciously, purpose. Black and white somehow separates my work from the everyday iPhone snap shot, from the family photos, and everything else that is meant to serve as a memory of reality. To me, the lack of colours are in a sense the same as the way we remember things. Not perfect, but it leaves room for interpretation, it encourages the viewer to fill in the gaps and draw his/her own conclusions.

Gallery Review: Magnum Manifesto at International Center of Photography

“Magnum is…?” That’s the big question behind the Magnum Manifesto exhibit set up at the International Center of Photography (ICP) in NYC. The exhibit commemorates the 70th anniversary of the collective started by some of the most famous names in photography history including Robert Capa and Henri-Cartier Bresson. Magnum Manifesto is also a book–a pretty thick one at that–which delves deeper into the psychology behind some of the photographers but also finds ways to unite them all under the single voice of Magnum. For example, there are handwritten notes from the photographers inside the book that the photographers often wrote to one another. These and much more are in the archives, and it surely a sign of the times when you consider that we may need to get screenshots of the texts the photographers have back and forth today.

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Magnum Manifesto Will Celebrate the 70th Anniversary of the Collective

All images in this article are used with permission from ICP.

Next month, the International Center of Photography is teaming up with Magnum Photos for a special exhibition called the Magnum Manifesto. This year, the famed agency has been focusing a whole lot on social change. With this being the agency’s 70th year, they upcoming exhibition at the International Center of Photography is going to feature work from photographers such as Christopher Anderson, Jonas Bendiksen, Henri Cartier- Bresson, Cornell and Robert Capa, Chim, Raymond Depardon, Bieke Depoorter, Elliott Erwitt, Martine Franck, Leonard Freed, Paul Fusco, Cristina Garcia Rodero, Burt Glinn, Jim Goldberg, Joseph Koudelka, Sergio Larrain, Susan Meiselas, Wayne Miller, Martin Parr, Marc Riboud, Alessandra Sanguinetti, Eugene W. Smith, Alec Soth, Chris Steele-Perkins, Dennis Stock, Mikhael Subotzky, and Alex Webb.

More details about the upcoming exhibition are after the jump.

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New, Never Before Seen Images of India by Steve McCurry on Display

All images in this post have been used with permission granted by the Rubin.

Today, the Rubin Museum of Art in New York is announcing in collaboration with the International Center of Photography the display of a new exhibit that shows off images from Steve McCurry’s travels in India–with some of the images never before seen by the public. The images are curated by both ICP and the Rubin.

“The exhibition curators chose images that represent McCurry’s insightful portrayal of everyday Indian life, with a selection of portraits, landscapes, and other photographs that span his long career.” says Robin Carol, PR and Marketing Manager for the Rubin Museum.

According to Steve McCurry himself in a question posed by The Phoblographer “I had been digging in my archive for hidden gems for my upcoming book with Phaidon on India.” That also means that some of the photos may be seen in this book when it hits stores.

The exhibition is open until April 6th 2016, and is currently open for the public. A couple of photos from the exhibit are after the jump.

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Through the Lens: A Look Back at Miroslav Tichý

One of Tichý's cameras

One of Tichý’s cameras © Roman Buxbaum

Three years ago, I walked into the International Center of Photography for the first time before I was due to meet a friend. It was a chilly February afternoon in 2010 as I was working my way down from Central Park, where I had been taking some photos. I hadn’t heard of ICP before, but given my family roots in photography (you can see a truncated version of that in my staff bio), I felt compelled to enter. The major exhibition on the main floor was that of Miroslav Tichý, a reclusive Czech photographer who, among other things I learned, made his own cameras, cut his own glass, and paid no mind to the quality of his images. There’s more to be told, and I will tell it to you as it shook the foundation of my then-nascent practice and understanding of photography.

 

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