People as Infrastructure
A recurring theme in my photography is urban public space. This space is not only defined by buildings, architecture and infrastructure, but above all by the people who inhabit this space. I am interested first of all in these people; in their use of the city; in the functioning of public space; and in the (co-)habitation in an urban landscape. Instead of focusing on standard architectural highlights or the typological clichés of public space – ‘the square’, ‘the marketplace’, ‘the park’ –, I focus on ‘people as infrastructure’. This is also the title of an essay by urbanist and sociologist AbdouMaliq Simone, who tries to shift our attention away from the typical ‘hard’ focus on urban development toward the infrastructural significance of fluid streams of people. Therefore, the human body and the movements of individuals and groups (spatial choreography) play an important role in my photographs. I pay attention to peoples’ poses, the shapes that bodies take through acts like walking, waiting and carrying. I let the movement of the city resonate in an image and turn it into a metaphor for the changeability and flexibility of these cities and their inhabitants.
During my first years as an artist I primarily did research in Europe. China followed in 2004 and since 2008 I have immersed myself in African cities.
Lard Buurman (1969 Zeist, The Netherlands), studied Photography at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague, where he graduated in 1997. In his photography the public realm has always been prominent. In the series ‘Taking Time’ (2002) he began exploring the possibilities of compiling documentary images by means of taking photographs in cities throughout Europe. By reconstructing the images from several documentary pictures from one spot, a hybrid of documentary and staged photography emerged. To him the notion of a city is defined by showing everyday life. By focussing on the narratives and lives of people that encounter each other in the public realm, he developed his own visual idiom. This project resulted in a solo exhibition at Bureau Leeuwarden in 2002. Two years later he travelled to China because he was fascinated by the speed in which urbanization had developed. In this series ‘Peoples Republic of China’, the city as a multi-layered space, a site of permanent change and incessant encounters gradually emerged. Through his experience in China he came to examine the urbanization in the second and third world more closely and his interest in African cities increased. From 2008 onwards he’s been working on capturing these African cities that are characterized by informal structures and the art of improvisation. His work did not go unnoticed and Buurman has shown his work in the Netherlands in the context of art and architectural festivals as well as on the African continent i.e. at Lagos Photo (2010 and the upcoming edition of 2014) and the Biennial Picha Recontres Lubumbashi, in Congo in 2013.
城市公共空间是 Lard Buurman 的摄影里反复出现的主题。这个空间不仅是由建筑、建筑学和基础设施定义的，而且最重要的是居住在空间里的人。他最先是对这些人感兴趣，人们使用城市的方式、公共空间的功能、一个城市景观里的（共同）住所。
Lard Buurman 2016 年北京设计周期间的工作坊，将在白塔寺的中央广场，由一个简短的街头摄影历史介绍开始，联接到使他形成自我视觉语言的研究。用他自己的话说:
“在我的相片里我并不太想记录当下的现实，而更偏向于日常现实的地点。由图像结合成的多个 “纪录类” 照相片，一种合成形式－间于纪录摄影和摆拍－得以形成。同时我也琢磨着与影像摄制交叉的可能性。”
工作坊介绍之后，继续在白塔寺的街道上以专注于人体姿态和 “作为基础设施的人” 去捕捉那块区域。下午我们将一起讨论成果，并选一些打印出来在中央广场进行小型群展。