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Bethany de Forest

Bethany de Forest Born in Stoneham, Massachusetts, 1966 - USA  Graduated in Photography at the Art Academy in Utrecht.  In a very early stage she created table top models she also photographed. With an ordinary camera the images were too distant. She wanted to create the feeling that she could walk through her own made up worlds. Pinhole photography made this possible. Her dreamworlds are not always peaceful. The presence of unexpected elements create contrast and confront the viewer with her or his own prejudices. A giant bug can become a beautiful creature while a small harmless fish becomes a giant monster. A seemingly peaceful world can be bewitched by an immense feeling of emptiness. Her inspiration usually starts with a small bug or a certain material that draws her attention. From that, an idea emerges with elements of a fairytale. Bethany gives herself and other people the opportunity to become participant in this fairytale. Still none of her photographs depict an existing story. The images come directly from her imagination.

Bethany creates her models from unusual materials like candle grease, candy, sugar cubes, cotton wool, and meat. By giving the viewer the possibility to look at her worlds up close a different reality is created. Lifeless materials come to life and living creatures form static still lives. 
To make a pinhole a pinhole camera is needed. Basically this is a camera without a lens but with a tiny hole to let the light in. Through this pinhole the image is directly transferred onto the film inside the camera. Exposure times are very long in comparison with ordinary cameras. 
Sometimes it takes ten minutes to take a picture of one of her own built models. In broad daylight it usually takes a few seconds. This technique gives very lively and remarkable results and offers, as Bethany shows, endless possibilities.

Education

Fotografie aan de Utrechtse Hogeschool voor de Kunsten

Solo exhibitions (selected)

2012 KochxBos Galerie 'Romantic absurdistic pinholes' solo, Amsterdam – Nederland
2011 Morren Galleries, Utrecht – Nederland
2009 Galerie Utrecht, Utrecht – Nederland
2008 Galerie Utrecht, Amsterdam – Nederland
2007 Galerie Utrecht, Utrecht – Nederland

Group Exhibitions (selected)

2015 Photosyntheses, shedding New light on plants, Royal botanic garden, Edinburgh – Schotland
2014, 2016 'Poetics of Light: pinhole Photography ', New Mexico - US
2014 Droomkunst, Singer museum, Laren – Nederland
2013 Fotosynthese; Nieuw licht op planten. Hortus Botanicus, Amsterdam - Nederland
2012 MUba "Otherworldly”, Lille – Frankrijk
2011 Museum of arts and design "Otherworldly", New-York – US
2009 Museum “De Buitenplaats”, Eelde – Nederland
2004 Slow Vision Svolvear, Lofoten – Noorwegen
2002 International Pinhole Expo, Siena – Italië
2002 Bollywood, Vishal, Haarlem – Nederland
2001 Noorderlicht fotofestival: Droomoord, Kunstpaviljoen, Nieuw-roden – Nederland

Assignments

2010-2015 Making of 'RED-END and the factory plant' samen met Robin Noorda
2007-2009 Making of ‘RED-END and the seemingly symbioyic society” animation film samen met Robin Noorda
2005-2007 Pinhole Image, glass wall 3 x 18 meters voor schoolgebouw 'de Weide wereld' in Leidsche Rijn
2004 Mirror Slide Part of ‘Heimwee Manifestatie’ in Haarlem. together with Robin Noorda , mechanical animation of sunset on a building near 'het Spaarne'

Collections

RABObank Collectie Part of the Gerard van Wezel-collectie

Awards

2009 Utrecht première and openingsfilm HAFF (NL), 4K projection - Movie Squad Award
2009 Espinho IAFF (PT) - Best Short Film Award
2009 Talinn AFF Animated Dreams: Academy of Arts - Brain-tap Award (EE) - Best Film
2010 Angers EFFF - Premiers Plans (FR) - Audience Award European Short Films
2010 Nijmegen Goshort festival (NL) nomination Best Dutch Short Film
2010 Selected for the animation festivals Annecy, Barcelona, Brussels, London, Melbourne, Stuttgart, Zagreb
2010 Nominated for the 'Het gouden kalf'-award, Dutch filmfestival Utrecht

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