The ninth edition theme of the international literature festival ChiassoLetteraria is the inescapable plot between collective History, individual stories of characters and authors, their narratives and accounts. How can History be told through literature? What role can be assigned to literature in dealing with elements of the past, even when they’re uncomfortable? What stories can still be told?
The Festival’s visual identity reflects the duality between the concept of history and story. A diagonal that separates, but at the same time approaches, becomes the recurring element used on logos, images, typography, exhibition design and various communication tools.
Mariapia Borgnini for the spaces of the Cantonal Art Museum of Lugano. The exhibition title “Enoisuillusione” is printed letter by letter on the pages of the japanese bound book. This allows the palindrome to be read infinitely and in both directions. The four-color printing with the addition of special inks on 9 different kinds of paper evokes the variety of media and techniques used by the artist. Graphic design in collaboration with Sidi Vanetti.
Today we speak to
Stefanie Djie, a New York based photographer from Singapore.
Yanda: Tell us what do you do?
Stefanie Djie: I am part of a photography team (Stoltze and Stefanie); edit a 400-pages glossy biannual, S Magazine as well as the content for its S online channels; and run our 2500 sq feet. photography studio on Bowery in New York City.
I am always interested to find out what does a duo really means. Profit splitting or there are actually more good to it?
The way I see it, it’s not just about the profits. Being a team means that we get to maximize our strengths and minimize our weaknesses.
While we work together on refining concepts and ideas, Jens (Stoltze) and I focus on different areas for all our productions; I tend to the pre-production elements – deciding on the creative team, mood-board references, initial ideas, producing the shoot while he focuses on technicalities, lighting decisions and eventually, the post-processing.
On working with clients, we play up our appeal to the different genders. Jens gets away being sauve dealing with women, and in those scenarios, I take the back seat. I like to think that we’re just being smart about it (as sexist as it sounds).
What was your background and how did you ended up as a photographer?
I have a family who, despite having no understanding of the Arts, are supportive of my decisions (As a child, you have no choice over your experiences).
I was always interested in studying pose, body-language, semiotics and group dynamics. I am a very visual person; I love to observe trends (photography movements, seasonal runway trends etc.) and subtle motivations communicated through ideas and human behavior.
Knowing that I don’t possess the patience of a painter, nor the linguistic abilities of a sociologist and coupled with the bookish nerd in me (love speed-reading manuals), I felt like I’ve always had the temperament and stamina of a photographer. Which to me means, to be constantly on the move, to enjoy a speedy progression of your work and having the natural attraction to aesthetics.
There’s a saying that a good photographer needs to be a wanderer. What are your thoughts on this?
I think being a wanderer expands minds- any artist can benefit from archiving experiences, referencing cultures, seeing different lights.
By wandering, you are able to build context to your work. And I think that’s very important in our contemporary culture.
What about your editor role at S Magazine? How did it all get started?
S Magazine was established in 2004 in Copenhagen, Denmark. We like to think that we give freedom back to the art and fashion photographers; it was started for artists to create without boundaries and seasonal trends, be published and have an international dialogue.
I slipped into the role of an editor when Jens asked for my help with curating the online content after our beloved long-time online Manager Emilia, stepped down. It then evolved to more responsibilities when I proved too efficient (…for my own good, Hello Product of Singapore!) and now work with a small team (There’s just five of us) on all creative-decisions.
Drawing NYC is the outcome of a trip to NYC in 2012. It’s a folder holding 14 spontaneous and archaic black and white drawings and their mirrored offprint. The folder was produced in a limited edition of 10 copies.
The hero’s submerging under as well as emerging out of water is a familiar phenomena in motion picture. Representative water scenes are frequently used as an instrument of dramatic visualization by filmmakers. Concerning cinematic interaction with water, immersion—in an aesthetic, but also pragmatic way—initiates flashbacks, provides a look into the inner subject just as imagination and dreams or opens the gates to dimensions beyond immanent motion picture’s reality. Based on examples of art history and selected film sequences, this liberal arts orientated master thesis combines appropriate and classic theories. The text faces significant connections between staged water immersion/emersion in film and real life water experiences.
We are presenting an elaborated and abandoned book for the output award. Often, critical editions are bulky, even confusingly patterned—our focus is on neatly arranged and typographically useful editorial design to provide a better reading experience.
60 artists from all over the world were invited to work on / and with traditional asiatic harmonica books. The project was a collaboration between the College of Fine Arts Seoul, Tokyo University of Arts and the Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design