Anne Geene and Arjan de Nooy
Anne Geene (Breda, 1983) began her studies on photography at the Royal Academy in The Hague and graduated at Sint Joost, Breda. After this she did the Master Photographic Studies at Leiden University. In 2014, Anne Geene won the ING Unseen Talent Award. Her work is included in various public as well as private collections. With the help of photographs Geene investigates, collects, archives and aranges the world around her. Eventually her findings are analysed and catalogued according to an apparent logic. Apparent, because her interpretation of her data is strictly personal and a hint to our urge to regulate and know everything.
Arjan de Nooy (Goes, 1965) studied chemistry and photography. He works both with his own photographs as well as with found material. The stories he constructs give the photographs an artificial context and therefore give them their meanings. An ongoing project is a fictional history of Dutch photography, in which both oeuvres and biographies of fictional photographers are presented as contemplative texts. Parts of this project can be found on denooycollection.com and in the publications De facto (2009), Haarscherp (2012) and Party Photographer (2014).
Ornithology refers to the scientific study of birds, including their physiology, classification, ecology, and behaviour. Due to their visibility and often colourful appearance, birds are a popular object in both science and the visual arts – photography in particular. With their pseudo-scientific approach hunter-collectors Geene and De Nooy defy the borders between these disciplines. Their classification of bird pictures exhibits the humorous outcome of creative and associative thinking, with every section of Ornithology opening new perspectives on birds.
Geene and De Nooy manifest themselves as rare birds in the world of bird photography, dominated as it is, by people with the ‘classic’ aesthetic view. Many of the subjects they shot are dead, but some are representations. Some appear as building materials, some merely as their droppings. Ornithology may be seen both as a photographer’s study of birds and as an ornithologist’s photographic research.