Architectural Photography by Iwan Baan on Show at ACME

Chandigarh, India, 2010
Chandigarh, India, 2010

Iwan Baan is an architectural and documentary photographer du jour, working for clients in the architectural avant-garde including Rem Koolhaas, Herzog & de Meuron, Thom Mayne, Michael Maltzan and Bjarke Ingels (heard on this DnA).  

He, like LA photographer Julius Shulman and, later, Dwell magazine, broke away from the tradition of people-free architectural photography. But his striking photos go even further, situating buildings in relation both to the people in their orbit and to the surrounding context, sometimes jarringly, and interestingly, different or gritty.

Now some of his work, along with the paintings of recent UCLA grad Daniel Cummings, will be on show at ACME Gallery, starting this Saturday.

Baan will show his images of two capitals, Chandigarh, in India, and Brazilia, both examples of the imposition of midcentury Modernist planning and design — by Le Corbusier (Chandigarh) and Oscar Niemeyer (Brazilia) — on what were then poor, populous societies with societal and urban models that some have argued were not suited to Utopian experiments in concrete. A discordance perfectly suited to Baan’s photographic eye. On show at ACME through April 16; opening party this Saturday, March 19, at 6.30PM. Daniel Cummings’ work is also on show at Santa Monica Museum of Art.