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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Marek Neumann – Power Fashion accessible by tube

The Camera Club, Kennington, South East London

Written by Satu Fox

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Tucked away down a backstreet in the genteel neighbourhood of Kennington, medicine help The Camera Club is one of those gems that remind you why living in London is amazing and way better than anywhere else, pill especially villages. Villages may well have photography clubs, treat but they are almost certainly not as well-resourced as this one, and probably cannot be accessed by tube.

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A haven for photography enthusiasts since the early days of the medium, having been founded in 1885, the Club allows members to rent studios and darkrooms and to display their work in the cosy, exposed-brick surroundings of the gallery space, which is also lined with bookshelves with umpteen books on photography and other arts. It’s housed in a modern building filled with light and earnest people discussing exposure.

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There’s something special about a member’s club that everyone understands but it’s far better to be a member of a club that revolves around art than drinking, in my humble opinion. I definitely want to find some equivalent semi-secret space in my area, spend all my time drawing or taking photographs entirely for my own pleasure and hanging around with other artistic types more interested in perfect composition than self-promotion. You can join special groups depending on your interests! It will be like school again but without the emotional trauma.

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The current display is of the work of photographer Marek Neumann, whose hyper-real images of catwalk models at first seem like beautiful but par-for-the-course crisp images of runway shows. But something about the models made the pictures somewhat eerie – Neumann explores the strange, almost alien, quality of model looks by tweaking them in Photoshop. It’s refreshing to see fashion photography away from the conventions of magazine editorial or advertising. There are no prices or designer names here, just the images, fending for themselves.

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Their glistening otherworldliness is exaggerated with effects on the eyes, making them look slightly possessed and drawing attention to the weirdness of sending these creatures stamping down a catwalk in clothes no one could ever wear on a real-life street.

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Or you can just enjoy the shininess of beautiful models in amazing clothes. Neumann has an eye for colour, pattern and pomp and circumstance that is evident in the type of clothes he chooses to feature: from stiff white ruffs to slinky gowns to gold puff sleeves, there is no artful minimalism here, this is all about how wonderful and wacky fashion can be.

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