After the success of the extensive retrospective held at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam in 2017, that travelled to the Jeu de Paume in Paris and is now on at Fundación MAPFRE in Madrid, we are proud to present a special selection of street life colour photographs by Ed Van der Elsken.
For over 40 years, Ed Van der Elsken captured life as he saw it through photography and film. Documenting the streets around him, he wandered through cities like Paris, Amsterdam, Hong Kong and Tokyo seeking out colourful personalities, head-turning young women and wayward youth. Being both the influencer and the influencee of the time and place he found himself in, he developed a bold, unconventional and personal style. Van der Elsken’s presence resonates throughout his work: he was a master of making a personal connection with the people he photographed. His approach was confrontational, embracing the bright as well as the darker sides of human life. The unconventional technique and the gritty snapshot-like quality of his work have been of great importance in the development of contemporary photography.
Within the collection on view in the Bakery, we can follow the curiosity of the artist capturing moments from the vibrant life around him. Sidewalks compose the net of the public and therefore social space we live in, yet they are a transit space that pass unrecognized. The energy and freshness springing from these images highlight one of Ed van der Elsken’s main talents: unveiling the unnoticed.
The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam is currently hosting the exhibition “Ed van der Elsken Through the Eyes of Jan de Bont”, until June 3, 2018.