These are the last days to see at the gallery Camera Obscura two sets of Michael Ackerman : Smoke et New York. Produced many years apart, they each have their own relevance: Smoke (1997-1998) is revisited on the occasion of the release of the eponymous book, while New York remains a work in progress, fueled by each stay in this city.
In 1996 Michael Ackerman met Benjamin, leader of the group Smoke: musician, poet, figure of the underground, charismatic character and touching by his vital energy, his art, his fragility. Michael photographed him and documented the life of the Cabbagetown (Atlanta) neighborhood where he lived, until his premature death in 1999. Today, Michael returns to this important work to create an exhibition and a book (Editions L’axolotl ) which combines photos, documents and texts.
New York was the first fertile ground for Ackerman, the place where he made his first photographs, the starting point for a unique work in which, to quote his friend Jem Cohen, “documentary and autobiography conspire with fiction, before dissolving in hallucination”.
Michael left New York for Berlin a long time ago, but he returns regularly and has retained his initial fascination for a city where everything seems possible. The streets of New York offer him encounters full of abundant, battered, poetic life.
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