Posts Tagged ‘documentary’

Visual Acoustics

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

“Architecture affects everybody…” Julius Shulman once said. And he’s right – it’s all around us, and far too often taken for granted. Sadly, Shulman passed away earlier this year. Now, director Erik Bricker‘s new documentary, “Visual Acoustics: The Modernism of Julius Shulman,” celebrates Shulman’s life and work as the world’s greatest architectural photographer.

Click HERE for a list of screenings.

And check out Dwell Magazine‘s interview with director Erik Bricker HERE.

H/T FreshCreation

Art & Copy: A Look at Advertising’s Best

Thursday, August 20th, 2009


“Hate advertising? Make better ads.” So says Doug Pray, director of Art & Copy, a documentary study of art, commerce and human emotion. Pray’s newest film focuses on advertising’s best, featuring a series of interviews with the industry’s leaders: George Lois, Mary Wells, Dan Wieden, Lee Clow, Hal Riney (who sadly passed away last year), Rich Silverstein, Jeff Goodby and other trailblazers, who bring honor to a profession all too often clouded by mediocrity.

In the spirit of other recent, great art/design documentaries – such as Gary Hustwit’s Helvetica and Objectified – and for a world so happy to embrace this under-represented industry – Madmen anyone? – Art & Copy considers the creative minds and passion of those who, generally without our awareness, sculpt so much of our world.

Art & Copy premiers tomorrow at the IFC Center in NY. For more information – and the trailer – visit

Max Gerber’s My Heart vs.The Real World

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

One year ago today, photographer Max Gerber caught my attention as a guest on The Charlie Rose Show (above). Gerber spoke with Rose about My Heart vs. The Real World. a documentary project that explores the lives of children with congenital heart disease through pictures and interviews. A book by the same name was published in February 2008.

Every year, 25,000 children are born with CHD in the US – or 1 out of every 125 – and Gerber himself (a successful editorial and commercial photographer whose client list includes TIME, Newsweek, and The Village Voice) has worn a pacemaker since the age of 8. At 35, Gerber has far outlived his 15 year life expectancy. Recalling the isolation he felt as a boy in the doctor’s office, always surrounded by adults, Max wanted to give a sense of familiarity and community to other young kids with CHD. His inspiring series profiles ten children with the disease.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Max today:

AC: How are you feeling about the book a year later?

MG: It’s funny to think about the book “a year later”, as you say. To me, it doesn’t really feel like a year later. I began photography for the project in late 1999, when I first visited Camp del Corazon, and finished shooting the photos in 2004. The idea for the book actually occurred to me earlier, in 1998, but it took about a year to begin finding subjects. Since then it had just been a long process of finding a receptive publisher, getting the book edited, designed and to press. It was a long road.

I take pictures for a living, mostly for magazines and corporate clients, and purely as a photographer it’s strange to look at the book now and think how I would do those pictures differently today. Still, even the photos that might be less than perfect still have significance for me – it’s really impossible for me to separate them from the experience, from the subjects themselves, from the circumstances that surrounded things.

Publishing a book is a goal for many photographers, and I don’t for a second forget or overlook how lucky I am to have done it at all, fairly early in my career, and with a subject that means so much to me.

AC: Have you had any success organizing exhibits of the series?

MG: It’s always been my plan – or, rather, my hope – to have exhibitions of pictures from the book, as well as brief excerpts. From the beginning, I had wanted to put these exhibitions in children’s hospitals rather than traditional galleries. Places where they could do more good, if you will. Places where the people who need some familiarity could find them. Sadly this has proved to be a little more difficult to organize than I had originally anticipated. As of yet, we have not managed to do this. Over the past year I’ve had some promising leads and affiliations with non profit and patient advocacy groups, but in almost every case the recession has hit these groups quite hard. Fundraisers have been canceled, conferences pared down, budgets cut, and unfortunately exhibitions from the book have been victim to these cuts.

Still, I remain optimistic that this will be doable in the near future. If there are any interested institutions please contact me!

AC: Any thoughts you’d like to share on the subjects themselves?

MG: I’m really happy to say that I keep in contact with many of the subjects in the book. One of the side effects of the project that didn’t occur to me when I started was that I would literally be watching these kids grow up. Jeni was 13 years old when I met her, now she’s almost 24 and married. Micah’s sister, Tashena, is in her mid twenties and an amazing photographer, having graduated from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara. Ali just graduated high school and got a scholarship to CalArts for photography. She cites me as an influence and I’m immeasurably proud! As the kids grow up and become teenagers and then young adults I’ve been able to relate to them in much different ways, and it’s very cool. Hopefully I’m like the cool uncle.

I have my own copy of the book signed by the kids themselves. I caught up with Tashena, Patty, Jeni, Mario, Dylan and Ali shortly after the book was published. In one case Dylan, Mario and I duplicated a picture we had done for the book, a few years later. You can see them here:

AC: Thanks so much, Max!

My Heart vs. The Real World is published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, a division of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, a non-profit genetics/biological research institute in Long Island, NY.


Click on image above to buy My Heart vs. The Real World