This N' That: Keep In The Know With Photography News
By Ashley Yu
Hasselblad’s Latest Release
Named the elusive X1D II 50C, Hasselblad’s has announced their new medium format mirrorless camera--the sequel to to their X1D, which was the first compact medium format mirrorless camera, released in 2016. With a larger touchscreen than its predecessor, the upgraded camera also features a higher resolution viewfinder, a 50-megapixel, medium-format CMOS sensor with a range of 14 stops, a continuous shooting rate of 2.7 fps, and a live view refresh rate of 60 fps. Available in July, the X1D II 50C will also save you over $3000 USD since it is now priced at $5750 USD, instead of the original $8995 USD for the first model.
Hasselblad also boasts a significant improvement, ditching the first model’s sub-par performance. Even after plenty of software updates, the original model had long start-up times and laconic response time. Considering its original price, the X1D 11 50C might be the solution to all the problems of the mirrorless camera, though nothing can quite beat the small-format mirrorless cameras for capturing sports and other fast actions.
Hasselblad has also added a new and revolutionary feature: the ability for the camera to tether over a USB-C cable to an iPad-- a first for a model of that size. Now longer weighed down by a clunky computer or the anxiety of accidentally shooting over other images in your SD cards, this feature ensures reliable image transfers that you can immediately upload to your iCloud in the palm of your hand.
#FakeNews of Photography: Staged Photo of Assassins
The award-winning Swiss/Italian photojournalist, Michael Crameri, has been accused of faking a series of images documenting hit-men carrying out act of violence in Honduras. Allegedly, Crameri staged the photographs of several men wielding guns and threatening murder, after his Honduran fixer, Orlin Castro, who helped him gain access to local gang members, revealed the truth.
Crameri’s series, titled “Sicario: a job like any other”, is an imitation of Weegee’s graphic crime scene photographs, taken over the course of 4 years. His goal was to document hit-men working for gangs in the city of San Pedro Sula, capturing police raids, funerals, and even a recently murdered victim still with wet blood. Crameri’s most popular images were ones of sicarios (translated: hit-men) threatening civilians with violence and weapons as part of extortion rackets being carried out by organized crime and drug cartels.
After releasing a documentary for VICE, Castro, along with two other fellow photographers, have revealed it as “posed portraits alongside fake captions and completely staged scenes of criminal violence.” Castro retold a story that involved Crameri joking with local gang members, asking them to mimic what an execution would look like. As the gang members complied, he took the photographs and passed them along as the truth. They were all simply fooling around and Crameri happened to have a camera. Castro was told that those images would remain in Crameri’s personal archives.
Nan Goldin and Anti-Sacklers Landed at the Louvre
Anti-Sackler demonstrators have began their first protest in Europe. At 2:30 pm on Monday in Paris, Goldin and a swarm of 40 artists and activists pulled out a banner in front of the prestigious museum’s entryway, stating “Louvre Take Down The Sackler Name.” Self-named “Sackler P.A.I.N.,” the group staged a “die-in,” demanding the museum to remove the Sackler family name from its exhibition wings, including the Sackler Wing of Oriental Antiquities.
This protest is in response to the family’s role in the promotion and distribution of OxyContin, particularly as the opioid crisis reaching its screaming zenith. While “Sackler P.A.I.N.” has staged protests across a plethora of museums in America, other major institutions, such as the Met, Tate, and the National Portrait Gallery in London have ceased all donations from the family empire.
It is noteworthy that the Sackler empire has international reach, with their European pharmaceutical company Purdue Pharma with locations in over 120 countries and co-founded by Raymond Sackler. The only reason that exhibition wings in the Louvre currently bear the Sackler name is that the family donated 10M francs to the museum in 1997, which the activist group labelled “criminal philanthropy.”
Diego Velázquez Receives Glowing Reviews For Show in San Diego
As the iconic painter of the 17th-Century Spanish Golden Age, the paintings of Diego Velázquez (A.K.A. Diego Rodríguez de Silva y Velázquez) are currently part of an exhibition titled “Art & Empire: The Golden Age of Spain” at the San Diego Museum of Art. Loosely organized around sections of portraiture, stylistic naturalism, and aspects of daily life under a highly-influential and wealthy colonial empire.
From the unmistakably political paintings of El Greco to the still-lifes of Juan Sánchez Cotán, Velázquez’s works has received critical acclaim. Beyond his classic aristocratic portraits, sponsored by the Habsburg king, Phillip IV of Spain, the painter combines still-life with a religious narrative. Born in Seville, Velázquez would have seen the Andalusian city as the hub of imperial trade from Spain’s international colonies (which at that time already included the Philippines, Peru, and New Mexico).
BJP International Photography Award 2019: Jack Latham
Jack Latham’s Parliament of Owls has been awarded the BJP International Photography Award 2019. Latham’s photographic series, whose title is a mockery of the cultish elite gentlemen's club Bohemia Grove. Exploring the dangers of conspiracy theory and fake news. Shrouded in secrecy and based in San Francisco, it’s Illuminati-esque club boasts membership from top-tier figures, such as J. Robert Oppenheimer of the Manhattan Project, Richard Nixon, and Ronald Reagan. The club has been subject of rumors, including mock human sacrifices and satanic rituals.
Inspired by the far-right conspiracy theorise Alex Jones, who runs the infamous website InfoWars and released video footage, exposing the Bohemian Grove’s “new world order.” Shot only in black-and-white, Latham’s images add to the mystery of the elite club and answers no questions.
Latham will receive a solo show at TJ Boulting Gallery in London from July 24 to 21 August 2019. The exhibition is open to the public.