About

The wild life

The wild life

Jimmy Dovholt (°1969, Köping, Sweden) is an artist who mainly works with photography. By manipulating the viewer to create confusion, Dovholt makes works that can be seen as self-portraits. Sometimes they appear idiosyncratic and quirky, at other times, they seem typical by-products of American superabundance and marketing.

His photos isolate the movements of humans and/or objects. By doing so, new sequences are created which reveal an inseparable relationship between motion and sound. With a subtle minimalistic approach, his works references post-colonial theory as well as the avant-garde or the post-modern and the left-wing democratic movement as a form of resistance against the logic of the capitalist market system.

His works are often about contact with architecture and basic living elements. Energy (heat, light, water), space and landscape are examined in less obvious ways and sometimes developed in absurd ways. By parodying mass media by exaggerating certain formal aspects inherent to our contemporary society, he finds that movement reveals an inherent awkwardness, a humour that echoes our own vulnerabilities. The artist also considers movement as a metaphor for the ever-seeking man who experiences a continuous loss.

His works demonstrate how life extends beyond its own subjective limits and often tells a story about the effects of global cultural interaction over the latter half of the twentieth century. It challenges the binaries we continually reconstruct between Self and Other, between our own ‘cannibal’ and ‘civilized’ selves. In a search for new methods to ‘read the city’, he focuses on the idea of ‘public space’ and more specifically on spaces where anyone can do anything at any given moment: the non-private space, the non-privately owned space, space that is economically uninteresting.

His practice provides a useful set of allegorical tools for manoeuvring with a pseudo-minimalist approach in the world of photography: these meticulously planned works resound and resonate with images culled from the fantastical realm of imagination. By questioning the concept of movement, he often creates several practically identical works, upon which thoughts that have apparently just been developed are manifested: notes are made and then crossed out again, ‘mistakes’ are repeated.

His works are saturated with obviousness, mental inertia, clichés and bad jokes. They question the coerciveness that is derived from the more profound meaning and the superficial aesthetic appearance of an image. By emphasising aesthetics, he seduces the viewer into a world of ongoing equilibrium and the interval that articulates the stream of daily events. Moments are depicted that only exist to punctuate the human drama in order to clarify our existence and to find poetic meaning in everyday life.

His works sometimes radiate a cold and latent violence. At times, disconcerting beauty emerges. The inherent visual seductiveness, along with the conciseness of the exhibitions, further complicates the reception of their manifold layers of meaning. By demonstrating the omnipresent lingering of a ‘corporate world’, he creates work in which a fascination with the clarity of content and an uncompromising attitude towards conceptual and minimal art can be found. The work is aloof and systematic and a cool and neutral imagery is used.

His works are on the one hand touchingly beautiful, on the other hand painfully attractive. Again and again, the artist leaves us orphaned with a mix of conflicting feelings and thoughts. Jimmy Dovholt currently lives and works in Stockholm.

Just kidding – I just like to take pictures. (But if you liked the “artist biography” above, please go and grab one for yourself as well.

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10 thoughts

  1. Hey great work! I was in Stockholm many times last year since I was in Erasmus in Falun for six months last autumn :) It was really a great city where to have a “streetphoto walk” and you’re pictures are really explaining why! Keep posting! ;)

  2. Thanks, Eric & Simone. Yes, stockholm is a nice place to shoot in. It´s not the largest city, but it has tons of photo opportunities. And when I get bored I jump on a plane to one of the larger ones in europe. Both Paris and Barcelona are awesome to shoot street in. Falun i haven´t tried yet ;)

  3. I just wanted to say that I think you have an absolutely fantastic blog, and I’m looking forward to spending some time here to catch up on all the great street shots you’ve been doing over the years. The street bug bit me recently, so I’m sure that there’s also a lot I can learn here.

    Thanks for the subscription also!

    • Excellent! Good luck with your own street photography adventures, and thank you very much for your kind words. And don’t hesitate to ask if you want to know anything about a particular image or technique that I’ve used.

      Maybe my “Portfolio revisited” posts would be a good starting point. I think most of them tells you something about how the image was made, even though I rarely focus on technicalities. You find them on the portfolio page. :)

      • I’ve always had an interest in photography but art is not my forte. I was interested in knowing what camera do you use? And was photography always your passion, or did it just begin to grow on you?

        • Well, I found photography by coincidence some five years ago. I had a lot going on at the time – both work and other stuff – and basically needed something to take my mind off that. I had tried photography when I was younger but never took it further by investing in gear or time.

          So – in 2006 I bought a cheap Pentax DSLR to go with a lens I had and as soon as I started snapping I new I had found something that suited me perfectly. Six months later I joined a large swedish photo community and found others was interested in the same kind of images as I was – this was the first time I stumbled over the term street photography.

          Today, I still use a Pentax DSLR (K-5) and have a small amount of lenses that I use. Primarily, I shoot most street with a 21mm lens, but switch to 31mm every now and then.

          The things I like with the Pentax system is their dedication to producing small lenses and camera bodies, and the fact that I hate doing the same thing as everybody else (i.e. Nikon, Canon et al) :)

          Here´s a picture of my gear:
          https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=132450020163255&set=a.132450016829922.32422.124914374250153&type=3&theater

          • Oups – I forgot to mention my new companion: a Ricoh GRD III small digital camera. Great to bring along in my pocket wherever I go.

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