Today we’re throwing the ball to photographer and filmmaker Matt Lambert, whose work has developed over the past year to push him and his audience into new and unexpected territories. If Picasso had a Blue Period, Lambert’s currently in his Berlin Period, turning his focus to issues of gender identity and youth politics whilst finessing an already intriguing aesthetic.
“Photographs inform a great part of my visual language,” says Matt Lambert. “For every film, I spend time shooting stills of characters and scenes – these screen tests and moments often taking on lives on their own and evolving into tangent projects. With each month and each project, what I’m looking at shifts dramatically. However, this is a selection of images that are relevant to me TODAY.”
PUSSY RIOT / SEWN MOUTH
I don’t expect everyone to quit their day job, but if you possess skills of visual communication and you never make work that deals with a social or political issue or least something that genuinely matters to your community, you’re wasting your voice. One of the political issues that unified much of the visual, liberal, humanitarian and punk/queer communities (especially in Berlin) was the imprisonment of Pussy Riot. This image of St. Petersburg artist, Pyotr Pavlensky, with his mouth sewn shut in their support resonated even stronger for me than the visual after-life of their pastel balaclavas.
BIEBER / FETISH
Though I deal with youth as a one of my primary subjects, the gross fetishization of youth in pop culture has become absurd!
During the summer, David Wilson sent me a video of a Japanese artist’s re-interpretation of a Britney video. This combination of pop-culture being re-appropriated and redefined in conceptual ‘art’ context in combination with our ongoing adolescence obsession is summed up for me in this semi-NSFW image from Czech photographer. Dany Peschl’s, staged ‘Disturbation‘ series.
MYKKI BLANCO Detail from portrait of Mykki Blanco above – see uncropped pic in Related Content
What seems to be peaking this year in NYC is a scene that I won’t attempt to try and define, but for me is one of the more exciting times for music in a while! This past summer, I’ve been lucky enough to meet up to cross paths with people like Mykki Blanco, Zebra Katz, Le1f, Black Cracker and Shannon Funchess (Light Asylum). Some of them veterans and others newcomers, but all capturing a different piece of that individual, pioneering spirit that drives NYC. Though impossible to settle on one image to sum up such a diverse group of artists, I’ve landed on this one of Mykki who I met a few months ago when he was visiting Berlin on his first EU tour.