With his second solo exhibit with the gallery, London-based photographer Jim Naughten presents a series of portraits of the Herero people of Namibia. The opening reception for the exhibition, “Conflict and Costume”, will be Thursday, March 14, 6–8pm at Klompching Gallery, in New York City. A book signing for Naughten’s newly released photo book, “Conflict and Costume” (Merrell, 2013) will take place at the gallery, Saturday, March 16, 1–2pm. The exhibit will be on view through May 4th.
In the case of the Hereros, it is the adoption of 19th Century European clothing, originally introduced to the Herero people by German missionaries, traders and immigrants during the time of Deutsch-Südwestafrika. Taken out of the context of the subjects’ everyday lives, the portraits are photographed against the stark backdrop of the Namib Desert. Each figure is isolated, bringing forth the vivid colors of voluminous petticoated gowns, cattle-horn-shaped headdresses and colorful military uniforms, to center stage in a spectacular fashion. The unusual vantage point presents the subjects—although anonymous—as empowered, stoic and regal.
—Courtesy of Klompching Gallery, New York City