About the exhibition It’s Your World
Join us for a weekend celebrating the newest exhibition of The Gallery Club: It’s Your World, a group exhibition with the work of American photographers Melodie McDaniel and Jon Lowenstein, and Dutch photographers Louise Honée and Sem Langendijk.
The participating photographers have extensively photographed a diversity of American communities covering different corners of the United States over the course of years, providing an insight view into these communities, who often live in challenging circumstances. In their daily lives they deal with poverty, (gang) violence, forced migration, abuse, etc.
But they have also found ways to overcome the socioeconomic odds against them, just because they were born in a specific neighborhood, city or county.
All works are available for purchase.
Since her graduation in 2010 Louise Honée has worked as a portrait and documentary photographer on both commercial and personal projects. Always on the look out for the poetry in a story, Louise gathers the images she creates together in the form of a visual novel.
For her project We Love Where We Live, Honée went to McDowell County in West Virginia to investigate how the young generation is standing there. This once prosperous mining area has turned into a futureless place with little perspective of better times. Louise – on the other hand – went looking for the beauty behind the malaise and the softness behind the façade of poverty. A returning theme within Honée’s photography is the identity of young people. It interests her how youngsters develop themselves in completely different social circumstances. She’s fascinated by the fact how the identity of the children is determined by the environment they grow up it.
Sem Langendijk has an interest in communities and their habitats, the urban environment and spatial arrangement. Growing up in the ‘hinterland’ of Amsterdam, Sem witnessed many changing sceneries throughout the years. He researches the relation between ‘home’ and public space, what impact communities have on their environment and how space functions within the structures of a city. He continues to balance his work on the very narrow edge between visual storytelling and poetic personal documentation.
His series LOT – Docklands is about the transition of the former harbor area in Red Hook, Brooklyn (NY). Focusing on the high demand for living near the water the project tries to get a grip on shifting social demographics, questioning the function of public space and migration, more commonly known over long distances, thinking about crossing borders or setting out to find a new home. But on a smaller scale, due to social inequality and popularity of ‘the city’, populations are continuously driven to relocate elsewhere, even within the capitals of our Western world. Sem’s long-term project Docklands tries to connect history and a past of shipbuilding and migration overseas with identity of place, a sense of belonging and micro migration.
Jon Lowenstein specializes in long-term, in-depth documentary explorations that confront the realms of power, poverty, racial discrimination and violence. Through the combination of photography, moving images, experiential writing and poetry, he strives for unsparing clarity by revealing the subjects of history that lack voice.
He has spent the past decade engaging his adopted community on Chicago’s South Side where he taught photography in the Chicago Public Schools, ran a community newspaper and is currently creating the South Side Imagination Center in conjunction with fellow community members. This extensive and powerful body of work challenges accepted notions about community, poverty, segregation, and ultimately, what is the real space between hope and power. Told by the community with fewer filters, and still with an aesthetic that’s a unique personal collaboration between himself and his community, South Side is a true integrative expression of a uniquely American time and place.
Lowenstein is also a founding member of NOOR photo agency.
For the last thirty years, the streets of Compton have been the stomping grounds of a youth riding and equestrian program under the leadership of Mayisha Akbar. Designed to provide the kids of Compton with meaningful year-round after-school activities, members not only learn to ride, but to care for their horses – developing responsibility, discipline, and self-esteem.
The project Riding Through Compton pairs three years of documentary photographs and formal portraits by photographer Melodie McDaniel. The joy, focus and confidence of the riders are apparent throughout the series, made all the more powerful by the largely incongruous nature of the riders’ surroundings. McDaniel pursued this project with an exhaustive and patient journalistic state of mind — but by shooting the pictures in black-and-white, she anchors the work not only in the evocative and informational sensibility of reportage but also in the broader cultural history of classic equestrian photography, and of both sport and courtly portraiture more generally.