Sabtu, 28 Mei 2011

Rineke Dijkstra - photographer

Self Portrait, Marnixbad, June 19 1991
The Dutch photographer and video-artist Rineke Dijkstra was born in Sittard in 1959. After studying at the Gerrit Rietveld Akademie in Amsterdam, Dijkstra first began working as a free-lance photographer for journals like Elle, Avenue and Elegance.
Since the beginning of the 1990s Dijkstra worked with a large format camera and concentrated on portrait-series in colour. The photographer's first independent series - her famous beach portraits 'Beaches' - came into existence between 1992 and 1996. The numerous work consists of body-photos of children and adolescents, who were photographed by Rineke Dijkstra in their bathing attire at the beaches in Europe and the eastern coast of the USA in front of the ocean as a simple but highly symbolical background.

1992 De Panne, Belgium. August 7 1992

1992 Kolobrzeg, Poland, July 26 1992
In 1994 a series of large format portraits of bullfighters and a series of three women, who were being photographed by Dijkstra soon after giving birth with their babies on their arms, followed.

1994 Saskia Harderwijk, Netherlands, March 16 1994

Bull Fighters from Vila Franca de Xira and Montemor o Novo in Portugal
Dijkstra : “The matadors came out covered in blood and exhausted – very similar to the mothers…I did not intend to do the men like that, all macho and the women as mothers – it just evolved from the experience…women make this extreme physical effort…while the men search for it as a kind of adventure. But still, both are exhausting and life-threatening actions. Recently the artist has turned her attention to video and sound installations that incorporate images of teenagers responding to popular dance music.”
Her strictly conceptual approach follows a tradition which goes from August Sander and Diane Arbus until today. Her works go beyond documentational photography and records moments in which the subjects are exposed to changing processes caused by developmental or extreme physical or psychological experiences. Since the mid-1990s Dijkstra has also used a camcorder and focused her artistic aims towards this new media. Young disco-club goers are featured in the videos 'The Buzzclub, Liverpool', 'UK/Mysteryworld', 'Zaandam, NL' (1996/97) and 'Annemiek' (1999). Rineke Dijkstra received international approval with her invitation to the Biennale in Venice in 1997. Her works can be seen at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, the Folkwang Museum in Essen and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

1. Almerisa, Asylun Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands 14 March 1994
 Almerisa, a Bosnian Muslim from Tuzla, at an asylum centre in the Netherlands in 1994.
Dijkstra first photographed Almerisa—a Bosnian girl whose family had relocated to Amsterdam—as part of a project documenting children of refugees. She continued photographing her and made eight photographs over eleven years. The images maintain a consistent compositional format, showing an isolated figure seated in distinct interior settings, looking incrementally more modern as time passes. The pictures not only document Almerisa's development from childhood through adolescence and into adulthood but also record her progression through cultural and geographic displacement.
Dijkstra: “In 1994, I was commissioned to photograph the children of asylum seekers as part of an art project, and I went to a refugee centre in Leiden, in the Netherlands. I spent about three days there before starting work.
All the kids were wearing tracksuits and T-shirts. I suppose they were comfortable, but I thought they looked as if they were wearing pyjamas. I felt that, if their portraits were to be exhibited, they should be able to wear nice clothes. I asked one of them if she had a dress and she said sure, and I started photographing her.
Another girl started to cry. I asked her what was wrong, and she said: "I want to have my picture taken, too!" Her name was Almerisa – she's the girl in this photo. She was six at the time. Her family were from Tuzla; they are Bosnian Muslims, but non-practising. Their room at the refugee centre was shared with five or six families, in a space that was 8m by 8m. The beds were stacked on top of each other, and they tried to create some privacy by hanging up blankets.
First, I took a picture of Almerisa on the bed, with all the blankets behind her, but then I changed my mind: I didn't want to draw attention to her situation. I improvised a little studio in the corner of the room, and the result was much better. If you don't explain everything in a photo, the little details become important: the clothing, the chair, the corner of the cupboard. The family were living out of suitcases and so the dress was wrinkled, the shoes didn't fit any more, and she was wearing strange socks that don't go with the outfit.
A couple of years after I took this, I started to wonder what had happened to Almerisa, so I tracked her down. Now, I take pictures of her every few months. The pictures get more interesting all the time: she started to change, slowly adopting a western European culture. I find the whole context fascinating: a child moving from east to west, from a warzone to peace.

2. Almerisa, Wormer, The Neherlands 23 June 1996

3. Almerisa, Leidschendam, The Netherlands, 21 February 1998

4. Almerisa, Leidschendam, The Netherlanads 19 March 2000

5. Almerisa, Leidschendam, The Netherlands 9 December 2000

6. Almerisa, Leidschendam, The Netherlands 13 April 2002

7. Almerisa, Leidschendam, The Netherlands 25 June 2003

8 Almerisa, Leidschendam, The Netherlands 29 March 2005

9. Almerisa, Zoetermeer, The Netherlands 24 March 2007

10. Almerisa, Zoetermeer, The Netherlands 4 January 2008

11. Almerisa, Zoetermeer, The Netherlands 19 June 2008
Other photographs by Rineke Dijkstra:

1995 The Buzz Club, Liverpool, England, 11 March 1995

1995 The Buzz Club, Liverpool, England, 11 March 1995

1998 Tiergarten, Berlin, Gemany June 7,D 1998

1999 James, Tate Modern, London 10 December 1999

2001 Olivier Silva, The Foreign Legion, Camp Rafalli, Corsica 18 June 2001

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