Aesthetica Magazine Issue 64

April / May 2015

The future can only be imagined by looking back towards the past. In Aesthetica Issue 64 we look for a frame of reference to start from, to unpick, to tease out and then create something entirely new. For example, there would be no digital without analogue and certainly no progress without retrospection. We truly believe that you have to experiment and gather a wide range of influences in order to innovate.

This issue is a combination of retrospective and survey combined with a departure from convention. Under Construction features 10 young American and Canadian photographers who are using a diverse range of methodologies for image-making, but who are promoting photography in a different way, experimenting with form and colour, ultimately taking it to a new and exciting level. What is Luxury? at the V&A, London, addresses the notion of value in our society and questions the parameters of materiality and construction. We also look at the contribution feminist artists have made to the canon and how their works of the 1970s redressed the gender balance. Political, social and economic systems are reviewed in a seminal new show Latin America in Construction: Architecture 1955-1980 at MoMA, New York, which surveys the region’s architecture over 25 years.

Photographer Jürgen Schrepfer captures form and colour through highly illustrative images that detail the hidden aspect of urban spaces while Guillaume Grasset ponders internal and external views of the home through images that recall a Hitchcock film. Anja Niemi and Astrid Verhoef both present themselves as the subjects in their work: one commenting on the relationship that we have with ourselves and the other exploring the absurdity between humans, the environment and technology. Cover photographer, Yossi Michaeli, uses distinct lighting to interrogate cinematic narratives, and in film, we speak with Norwegian director Eskil Vogt about his profound new release Blind. This issue is about insight and intrigue, and, at the same time, looks back in order to look forward to the future.

Alluring Landmarks

Guillaume Grasset’s series Angelino Heights, a haunting collection of images documenting the second-oldest district of California.

Isolated Normality

Astrid Verhoef’s photographs manipulate the appearance of reality and recontextualise normality, moving the familiar into an unfamiliar landscape.

Design Innovation

MoMA’s Latin America in Construction explores how revolutionary approaches allowed the continent to create a breed of Modernism entirely of its own.

Urban Terrain

Drawn to bold structures, Jürgen Schrepfer explores cityscapes with his camera, uncovering moments of artistic beauty in the modern metropolis.

Façade Revealed

Norwegian photographer Anja Niemi’s latest series, Darlene & Me (2014), is a complex and striking investigation into the perception of the self.

Precarious Disorientation

Norwegian director Eskil Vogt envisions a breathtakingly perceptive film about the fears and fantasies of a 30-something woman who loses her sight.

Shared Existence

Carol Morley’s fourth feature film, The Falling, explores the struggles and pressures of adolescence through an unusual fainting epidemic in an English girl’s school in the 1960s.

Collective Inspiration

Songstress Esmé Patterson has crafted a bright, bold and intriguing collection of songs that give voice to music’s most known – and famously silent – female muses.

Redefined Expectation

The housewife stereotype, the conventional: the history of feminist artists of the 1970s addressed in a radical reshaping of art history at the Hamburger Kunsthalle.

Future Perspective

The Aesthetica Art Prize 2015 features work that challenges perceptions, tackles difficult themes and presents the state of the world through a different lens. From over 3,500 entries, eight pioneering finalists were selected for the Aesthetica Art Prize exhibition and another 92 outstanding practitioners were chosen for the art prize anthology, Future Now.

Fictional Encounters

Acclaimed theatre producer Thelma Holt CBE brings Yukio Ninagawa’s production of Murakami’s Kafka on the Shore to the Barbican this spring.

Exquisite Refinement

What is Luxury?, a new visually stimulating exhibition at the V&A explores the concept and craftsmanship of luxury, and the meaning of this in a modern, materialistic society.

Image Pioneers

A group show of emerging artists opens at Pioneer Works, New York, showcasing 10 Canadian and American practitioners who are forging new approaches to the photographic form.