Nearest Truth Workshops
The Distance Between:
The Subject, the Author and the Portrait’s Legibility and Intentions
Berlin 21 - 25th September, 2023
This workshop will explore making photographs using elements between the author and the subject that divide the two.
Framing, composition, and obfuscation will be the rigor of the course. Instead of defining our subject matter by a clear distance between the camera and the subject, we will work on reframing images to add obstacles and distance willfully to take the subject from the center of the frame to the periphery and the secondary point of attention. We will agitate against the common portraiture motifs and examine less traditional portrait-making tropes.
Abstraction, aversion, and purposefully misdirecting in either text or visual forms will be highly encouraged. The reason for this is to examine “gapping” in making portraits, which will ideally illuminate our practice as we advance, using distance to promote a more comprehensive understanding of what it is to create a portrait in the 21st Century. Ideally, by enforcing this distance, this workshop will outline the issues of representation at hand when making photographs of people.
We will also ask that participants consider what a portrait is, whether it is reduced to the term of people, or whether it can include the motifs of the local environment to elicit a condition of portraiture. In an age where amateur and professional public photography of people is highly discriminated against and where conversely, surveillance culture is at the forefront of global capitalism, we invite participants to consider what it means to take a picture.
There is a history of work like this, which we will focus on during the course. Work by Paul Graham, John Gossage, Mona Kuhn, Beat Streulli, and of course, Todd Hido, amongst others, use this device to create ways of making images that are rewarding, photographically ingenious, and pleasing to view in a way that denies surface glancing and asks the viewer to work on the visual information as something like a mathematical equation. Instant gratification is rejected and.
This will be a 5-day workshop held in Berlin at Kominek Gallery. We will focus on making new work in the city and include several external photographic activities. We will also have external visits and lectures led by notable voices. We will also have a series of talks and book releases during the week, including the official launch of Nearest Truth Editions. We will show our work in progress (WIP) during the book launch evening of September 23rd which will be open to the public.
We suggest that participants shoot digitally for quick editing. We will be editing with test prints and projecting. Participants may shoot film. That said, turnaround time, scanning, and economics will be up to the participant.
The early bird price for this workshop is 950 Euros + VAT for the five days.
On August 15th, the price will be 1050 + VAT
These prices include the workshop fee but not accommodation, travel, food, etc.
There will be a 10% discount for any participant from 2023/2024 Nearest Truth Year-Long Photobook Program or Patreon supporter before June 2023.
To apply, please send a small pdf of your work and a bio to firstname.lastname@example.org
Todd Hido (born in Kent, Ohio, 1968) wanders endlessly, taking lengthy road trips in search of imagery that connects with his own memories. Through his unique landscape process and signature color palette, Hido alludes to the quiet and mysterious side of suburban America—where uniform communities provide for a stable façade—implying the instability that often lies behind the walls. His photographs are in many private and public collections, including at the Getty, Whitney Museum of American Art, and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Pier 24 Photography holds the archive of all of his published works. Hido has published more than a dozen books, including the award-winning monographs House Hunting (2001) and Excerpts from Silver Meadows (2013), as well as innovative B-Sides Box Sets, which function as companion pieces to his books. His Aperture titles include Todd Hido on Landscapes, Interiors, and the Nude (2014) and Intimate Distance: Twenty-Five Years of Photographs (2016). His latest book is Bright Black World (2018). His upcoming publication, which was titled before the pandemic, The End Sends Advance Warning, will be published in 2023. Hido is also a collector, and over the last twenty-five years has created one of the most notable photobook collections, which was featured in Bibliostyle: How We Live at Home with Books (2019).