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Thursday, May 10, 2012

See the World in 50 Takes: "Contents: Love, Anxiety, Happiness, and Everything Else"

Posted on Thu, May 10, 2012 at 11:30 AM

  • Sarah Hobbs

We think like the photojournalist (natch): Shoot absolutely everything interesting, from every angle and setting, and from the bigger set you're sure to get a handful of good shots and one that just nails it, the image that wows people and could speak for the whole shoot. Now imagine this on a grand scale -- say, 500 photographers from around the world submitting work to a group of professionals. From those, the top 50 photographers are chosen, and from each a single representative image. Say hello to "Contents: Love, Anxiety, Happiness, and Everything Else," which begins tonight (Thursday), at Rakyo Photo Center, home of an old-timey photo booth and unforgettable openings.

Untitled (perfectionist) - SARAH HOBBS
  • Sarah Hobbs
  • Untitled (perfectionist)

Among the shots is Sarah Hobbs' shot above, Untitled (perfectionist), which speaks to anyone who's ever experienced a creative block. A small wooden desk and chair sit in a day-lit room with a hardwood floor and sea-foam green walls. Engulfing the desk -- which contains a tall stack of paper and abandoned pen -- is a sea of what looks like giant popcorn but is crumpled paper, scaling the walls and obscuring half the window.

  • Colette Campbell-Jones
  • "Left" In

In stark contrast is Colette Campbell-Jones' "Left" In, an eerie, high-contrast black-and-white shot that feels like the opening of an Edgar Allan Poe story. A streetlight silently screams in a nighttime setting that includes smokestacks, a barren tree, a shiny wet road, and six people huddled in a covered bus stop. Adding to the bizarre atmosphere is the person approaching the shelter on the right, pushing a stroller.

  • Kirk Crippins

Other subjects in the show include explosions, freckled people, prostitutes and children in Brazil, and a senior prom at a school for the blind.

The exhibit comes from a program called Critical Mass (not the monthly bicycle ride) put on by the nonprofit group Photolucida. Other stops for the exhibit include Seattle and Portland, Ore.

You want a big workday time-suck that will blow your mind? Here's a link to all the work submitted by the winning 50 photographers.

The opening reception for "Contents: Love, Anxiety, Happiness, and Everything Else" starts at 6 p.m. tonight (Thursday) at RayKo Photo Center, 428 Third St. (at Harrison), S.F. Admission is free.

For more events in San Francisco this week and beyond, check out our calendar section. Follow us on Twitter at @ExhibitionistSF and like us on Facebook.

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