Hellen van Meene at Open Eye

hellen-van-meene-1.jpgExhibition of new works by the Dutch photographer Hellen van Meene at Open Eye Gallery until September 2nd 2006.
Not much I can say really. Photographs of young people, quite a few pregnant teenagers. The fact that the photos fill the frame rather than being surrounded by a huge white mount is a refreshing change.
Here’s some blurb…

van Meene does not see her work as strictly portraiture but as a way of creating a mood and exploring the subtleties inherent in the body in a particular environment and at a particular time of life. In her recent work, she has moved from working with models she knew well in her hometown of Heiloo, Holland, to increasingly travelling overseas and working spontaneously with strangers.

Her photographs are neither exploitative, nor strictly collaborative, nor entirely staged – the models work with van Meene, but the images are shaped primarily by her imagination and sensibilities. Through this collection of new works, van Meene enters the realm of fantasy, performance and psychological space, creating a powerful and beguiling concoction, combining elements of socially engaged documentary with those of historical portraiture in the tradition of Vermeer, Rossetti and Manet.

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