Over a period of 20 years Erik Kessels has made many books and exhibitions out of his passion for vernacular and amateur photography. In this lecture he will highlight his latest publications and give an insight in collecting and editing the photographs often found online or on flea markets from all over the world.
Another subject of the lecture is the role of images in the time we live in and how you can look at these in other ways than simply consuming them.
Erik Kessels is a Dutch artist, designer and curator with great interest in photography. Erik Kessels is since 1996 Creative Director of communications agency KesselsKramer in Amsterdam and works for national and international clients such as Nike, Diesel, J&B Whisky, Oxfam, Ben, Vitra, Citizen M and The Hans Brinker Budget Hotel.
As an artist and photography curator Kessels has published over 60 books of his 're-appropriated' images: Missing Links (1999), The Instant Men (2000), in almost every picture (2001-2015) and Wonder (2006). Since 2000, he has been an editor of the alternative photography magazine Useful Photography and has written the international bestseller Failed It!
For the DVD art project Loud & Clear he worked together with artists such as Marlene Dumas and Candice Breitz. Kessels writes regular editorials for numerous international magazines. He lectured at the D&AD Presidents Lecture and at several international design conferences such as in Singapore, Goa, NY, Toronto and Bangkok. He has taught at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy (Amsterdam), Écal (Lausanne) and at the Amsterdam Academy of Architecture where he curated a celebration of amateurism.
Kessels made and curated exhibitions such as Loving Your Pictures, Mother Nature, 24HRS in Photos, Album Beauty, Unfinished Father and GroupShow. He als co-curated an exhibition called From Here on together with Martin Parr, Joachim Schmid, Clement Cheroux and Joan Fontuberta.
In 2010 Kessels was awarded with the Amsterdam Prize of the Arts, in 2016 nominated for the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize. In 2017 his mid-career retrospective was shown in Turin and Düsseldorf and exhibited this year in the MOMA. He was called “a visual sorcerer” by Time Magazine and a “Modern Anthropologist” by Voque (Italia).