While we were in Berlin a few weeks ago, we visited the Mario Testino exhibition “In Your face” which is the first time this body of work has exhibited in Europe.
The exhibition shows a range of Testino’s images from commissioned work, many will recognise from magazines such as vogue, to other unseen work from the photographers private collection to more provocative pieces.
The most fascinating part of the exhibition for me was seeing the work in such large format and viewing, up close, just how fabulous and flawless some of our best known celebrities really are. Kate Moss features many times throughout the exhibition and my favourite portrait of all the prints was one of her taken against a bank of mirrors, showing every angle of her, as well as Testino, captured taking the picture. All though it was undoubtly posed it looks like a private moment between the two friends.As we know Mario Testino was the photographer Kate Moss chose to take her intimate wedding photographs.
There are a few other photography exhibitions I would like to see, which are currently showing in the UK. One is by the celebrated war photographer Lee Miller which focuses on womens fashion during the 2nd world war. Fashion on The Ration is showing at the Imperial War Museum London. Lee Miller was an exceptional photographer and she constantly managed to capture intimate and insightful moments during her work throughout the war,work that had rarely been done by a woman photographer before. Her life was almost more interesting than anything she could photograph though, which makes so fascinating. She started her career as a Vogue model, then became the muse for surrealist artist Man Ray before becoming a surrealist photographer herself and then finally becoming a US war correspondent, famously becoming the first person to reach Hitlers hide out in Berchtesgaden. There is the photograph of her sitting in Hitlers bath tub which many are familiar with.
“Only in England” currently exhibiting at The Walker Gallery Liverpool, features the work of Tony Ray Jones & Martin Parr and captures ordinary folk indulging in traditional English customs. Many of the images reflect on the humorous yet melancholy pursuits of past times, such as beauty pageants and British Seaside holidays and were taken from 1970 onwards. Sadly Tony Ray Jones died at the age of 31 but this exhibition reflects on his talent and documentary style photography which has inspired so many other photographers since.