8.19.2011

f100: Alison Rossiter and Hidemi Takagi

© Alison Rossiter, Kodak Azo, expired February 1922, processed in 2010, 3 1/2" x 5 1/2", unique silver gelatin prints
courtesy Yossi Milo Gallery

fototazo has asked a group of 50 curators, gallery owners, blog writers, photographers, academics and others actively engaged in photography to pick two photographers that deserve (more) recognition - the underknown, the under-respected as well as not-appreciated-enough favorites. A little more information on the project is available in the first post in the series here.

Today we continue the series with responses from Rona Chang.

We began the series with responses from Nicholas NixonMatt JohnstonBlake AndrewsJohn Edwin MasonAline SmithsonColin PantallMichael WernerLiza FetissovaLaurence Salzmann, Bryan Formhals, Richard Mosse, Shane Lavalette, Amy Stein, Amani Willett, Wayne FordS. Billie MandleLeslie K. BrownGordon StettiniusMarc Feustel, Hin ChuaAdriana Rios MonsalveDaniel AugschoellLarissa LeclairElinor Carucci, Pieter Wisse, Daniel Echevarr√≠aNatalie MinikQiana Mestrich and Jason Landry.

RespondentRona Chang was born in Chungli, Taiwan, a town that is famous for its spicy beef noodle soup. As a child she picked mulberry leaves for her pet silkworms while playing in the black sand pile at the construction site that was at the entrance to her cul-de-sac. At the age of seven, Rona emigrated with her mother and sister from Taiwan to Buffalo, New York, later moving to Queens.  In Queens her family moved almost every year.  Rona spent many summers living with her father in Taiwan, taking Chinese calligraphy and painting lessons. Rona still lives in Queens, and travels often, attributing her desire to travel to her many childhood moves and her love for packing.

Rona is a recipient of En Foco's New Works #14 Fellowship. In 2011, she  was awarded a grant by the Queens Council on the Arts with public funding from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs for her series Moving Forward, Standing Still. Ms. Chang is a finalist for the 2011 Rome Prize. In 2007 she was an associate artist at the Atlantic Center of the Arts residency under the guidance of Thomas Struth. Her work has been showcased online and has exhibited  both nationally and internationally. After receiving her BFA from The Cooper Union School of Art she worked as a photographer for the Asian Art Department at the Metropolitan Museum of Art for nine years, where she photographed all of the Japanese woodblock prints, Indian paintings and Chinese handscrolls in the collection.

Selections: Alison Rossiter and Hidemi Takagi

© Alison Rossiter, Kodak Snow White Royal (London), exact expiration date unknown, ca. 1940, processed in 2011,
diptych, 12"x10" each element, unique silver gelatin prints, courtesy Yossi Milo Gallery

Alison Rossiter and I share a work studio where we see each other about three times a week. Our ritual of morning conversations and lunches together have been wonderfully educational and supportive of our respective art careers. Alison creates her work in the darkroom, a very different approach from how I work and visualize. Talking to her about her process has been insightful and refreshing. Her abstractions are rich like the deep, dark strokes of sumi ink. At the same time they are tangible histories and experiments on the nature of photographic paper. Her work is part of the current summer show at Yossi Milo.

Hidemi Takagi makes work that is fun, full of saturated colors, and most importantly, inviting. I love how she reaches a broad audience and how she keeps them engaged in the Blender project through the Blender cart, the Blender kiosk and currently by showing her work on trash bins around Times Square. Hidemi's ability to connect with the public at large through a survey of food products found in the boroughs of New York City is pure and simple genius.

© Hidemi Takagi, from the series  "Blender"