Wendy Bevan, photograph
a cura di Editorial Staff, il 08/09/2011
On first looking at Bevan’s photography, there’s a sense of gravitas and maturity that belies the artist’s youthfulness and fashion-orientated background. The rich poetry of her work creates a romantic atmosphere that throws us in to another era, it draws us into a world of ambiguity and uncomfortable narratives. Bevan is known for her surreal aesthetic, and a tender, sympathetic portrayal of the feminine form – a refreshing alternative to the glossy, digitally manipulated imagery that proliferates today.
The haunting women in the images are often captured in moods vacillating from what appears to be serenity and calm; to deep melancholy and near-madness; these women appear to be influenced by a vision of the past, of which now a thin painterly light surrounds the subject, and filters the maze of emotions which Bevan so clearly examines. Harking back to a golden age of silent films, Bevan’s pictures feature femmes fatales. In her recent exhibition, The Pain of Desire, in London; Bevan examined how an idealised concept of female beauty and success can cause pain and suffering. The photographs are both brutal and beautiful and in a variety of contorted and anguished poses, celebrate the form of the female nude, but with undertones of madness, self inflicted violence and claustrophobia.
A selection of these works are also shown at Camera 16, art gallery in Milan, in ‘The Cut of The Light’. Bevan is a London based artist and pursues a multi-disciplinary approach to her work, as a photographer, musician, and performer. Born in 1983 in the North of England, Wendy grew up in Suffolk and North Yorkshire before moving to London at 18 to study photography. Graduating from college in 2004, she soon started her professional career. Collaborating with many major publications, she is known for her work in the fashion industry and is regularly commissioned as a fashion photographer for leading publications around the world. Wendy’s first editorial commission came from I-D magazine. She has since worked as a fashion photographer for leading publications around the world, including: Russian Vogue, Italian Vogue Sposa, Italian Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, Muse, Financial Times: How To Spend It, The Independent,10 Magazine, Stiletto and POP Magazine.
Wendy’s career as a fashion photographer gave her a platform to develop her identity visually as a photographer, and explore her passion for creating characters; working with some of the top fashion stylists,
models and hair and make-up artists in the industry. Although best known as a photographer, Wendy has always pursued a multi-disciplinary approach to her artistry. The theatre, music and performance have always been a central part of her artistic oeuvre. Wendy has performed at many leading venues and events, including: ICA, the Hackney Empire and the Edinburgh Festival. She has also worked with a variety of top theatre companies as a performer, such as Punch Drunk. Her band Temper Temper’s epic sound fuses muscular, glittering blues with old, dusty jazz, drawing hints of artists such as Antony and the Johnsons, Tom Waits and Meredith Monk. Bevan’s otherworldly vocal performance was recently credited as “Tragic, and hauntingly beautiful” by Vogue.com
Her assumed character, as the lead vocalist in the band, will often physically respond to the photographic images she creates, and the emotions they portray. Temper Temper provided the soundtrack to her most recent London based exhibition ’The Pain of Desire’. ‘The Cut of the Light’ explores a selection of Bevan’s photography work bringing together fully her fashion, still life, personal work and a series from a wider body of work that explores a reoccurring theme: the Circus. The theatrical, dramatic images in the show, are painterly in their style. Bevan’s beautiful yet disquieting works are captured on Polaroid, and then hand printed. She often displays a selection of the pictures in antique frames, which she sources herself, and which become an extension of the artwork.
‘Her hauntingly brilliant photographic works send a shiver to the core’ and reflect the brutal, cutting, dark side of desire.’
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