Tempo: Allan, Zabenzi e Britta

23 de outubro de 2020


Texto Allan Weber e Zabenzi
Entrevista Hanna Logic e Britta Burger
Fotografia Allan Weber, Zabenzi e Britta Burger


Meu nome é Allan Weber, sou nascido e criado na comunidade das 5 bocas, em Cordovil, RJ.

Vareta, Papel e Linha:
Por eu estar de quarentena aqui na comunidade, eu percebi que a pipa ta sendo a melhor forma de lazer nesses dias de isolamento. Todos os dias a partir de tal hora subimos para laje, para por nossas pipas no alto. Depende muito de como o dia está também, se tiver muito sol as pipas começam a subir um pouco mais tarde, lá pro final da tarde e fica até a noite, e se for um dia de chuva, sem condições de soltar... Porém os dias estão sendo bem quentes.

Aqui na comunidade poucos são os que podem se isolar, mas temos a topografia da favela como uma perfeita aliada para a prática de soltar pipa meio a pandemia, já que as casas são muito próximas e pelas lajes conseguimos nos ver, nos comunicar e interagir sem que ninguém precise sair de sua casa.
Cada um na sua laje, e o céu aglomerado de pipa, já que para muitos daqui, essa é a única opção de lazer diante do isolamento.
A pipa é usada como uma forma de distração nesse momento que estamos vivendo e o ato de registrar isso virou uma forma de distração para mim.
Nesses registros estão meu irmão Nicolas, meu primo Leonardo e o filho dele Rafael, Andrew e Cristian que são 2 vizinhos de laje.
Infelizmente o que eu venho presenciando aqui na comunidade não vem sendo só aglomerações de pipas no céu, antes fosse só isso. O céu todo colorido, vareta, papel e linha em meio a pandemia.


Essas são páginas do meu caderno do final de 2019 ao início de 2020. Juntei a eles fotos que tirei ou reeditei nessa quarentena. Esse momento, pra mim, tem sido sobre reciclagem de imagem e o estudo do meu próprio processo, então optei por criar imagens a partir de fragmentos de mim mesma.


Austrian photographer Britta Burger's project Hannah Logic 2007 – 2057 aims to change the way we look at photographic portraiture – swapping capturing a person in a single photograph for a series of images taken over 50 years. The subject is Britta’s friend and one-time assistant, Hannah Logic.

Hannah: When did you honestly first decide that this was a project, I knew you were taking pictures of me but I’m sure the first time you took my picture wasn’t with this intention.

Britta: I remember the day when I decided. I came to one of your first band practices after two guys had just broken into my house, they’d smashed the front door and I had to scare them off. I was quite shaken, but we talked about me documenting your life that day.

I think I remember.

I said something along the lines of this being no longer fashion but documentary now, we thought of it partly as a joke.
That’s probably why it hasn’t stuck in my mind, it was a bit of a surprise to me when you told me you’re coming to London, you’re doing this ten year exhibition about me and you want me to help you set up! I thought you must have mentioned it at some point, but between then and when you actually did the exhibition there was so much time!

It must have been something like 6 years. I knew I was working on something, it was quite a deliberate act. Gig photos for example are not normally my thing, I took photos of your gigs specifically for the big portrait I was doing. In 2017 I realised it had been ten years since I took the first photo of you, probably a Facebook memory that came up, I decided then that there will be an exhibition at the end of the year. That’s when we took those blossom photos.

Now that you remind me of this, I remember us taking those pictures and I did know it was for the exhibition at that point. Am I the only project of that kind or is there anyone else?

We’re planning to do 50 years of Hannah Logic, so you’ll be the biggest. But I generally enjoy taking long term portraits. You get people like Walter Benjamin talking about capturing the essence of a person in a photo. I don’t think you can, not in one photo. One photo is a moment, you might even capture the photographer more than the subject. But if people look at a book of 50 years of photos of you they will get an idea of who you are. And not all of those photos need to be candid or natural because we are not that natural in social situations.

Photography as such has changed so much since the time you started this, we’ve got people documenting themselves, there’s cameras everywhere, the candid thing doesn’t exist the way it used to anymore, you can film somebody walking down the street but they already know they are on camera. Maybe somebody in a field in the middle of nowhere might actually be a free person walking around without thinking there’s a camera, but generally everybody’s got a camera on them anyway.
And even when you went to the bluebell woods in the Cotswolds the other week you filmed yourself and I took live screenshots of that for our lockdown shoot. Well, I took digital and analogue pictures of the screen, and after that I took screenshots of some of those images. I ended up with many digital layers, very different from my mostly analogue work. How different was the shoot for you?

You weren’t there physically! When you had me get completely naked and run around the park at Hackney Downs, at least you were with me, whereas in this situation, although you were there, directing, and taking control, no one else could actually see you. It was very strange being directed by a phone without a person being there, sign of the times I guess.

The shoot was your idea, why did you want to do it?

It’s important to document pinnacle moments, like this lockdown, it would be a shame if we didn’t have some sort of shoot from this period. I’d gone to the Cotswolds, because when the lockdown started I panicked and felt I needed to get myself somewhere that was safer than London, I don’t trust the government. Isolating there meant I could roam a lot freer, that’s how I thought about the bluebells.

One of the first things I did in lockdown was an Instagram interview mostly about our project and you with the Photobook Café.  What was it like listening to me talking about you online for more than half an hour, in a live stream, for everyone to hear?

That was quite entertaining. But I didn’t really know my place, I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to interact. To support you I was sending links to some people on my Instagram, but it’s such an awkward thing, fun but strange. I really would like to turn this round on you one day, I probably will at some point.
What would you do? What would you say about me?

I don’t know, but I’m telling you now, it might change you, it might sculpt your personality to have someone do this to you. I sometimes think that about myself. Can you imagine having a camera on you all the time? Of course there’s not a camera on you all the time, but to become a subject like this?

I did have that very much as a child, I have about 40 hours of videos and super8 films of me and my sister. Maybe it was all too much for me and I found my own victim in you! It’s not just the photos, it’s that we’re making it a thing, we’re doing shows, interviews.

Now we can move on to text, to my thoughts.

Exactly, I’ve been wanting to include your writing for a while. Your thoughts haven’t been analysed enough yet, we need to shine a light on what’s happening inside your brain! Maybe what we’re doing is an extreme form of the artist and their muse. You did say the experience is sculpting you. Like Pygmalion in Greek mythology, who made a sculpture and it came to life. You should turn it all around. I probably deserve it.

I have to think about how I can manipulate the artist.

Which shoot was the hardest in that sense?

When we went to Portsmouth was hard, I just wasn’t in a very good place and having my picture taken felt really hard work, but it’s reality.

And yet those are some of the best ones.

That’s the kind of stuff you want.

Maybe that’s bad.

It’s hard to have someone take pictures of me when there are parts of me I don’t want to know about. There are times I don’t want to know about, there are certain things I want to forget. And then there are photographs! But I’m glad they’re there. Not many people have their life experiences documented so they can look at themselves at the time and think about what was going on.
It was a really difficult time, you were at your mum’s in Scotland, I had to be pushier than ever to get you down to Portsmouth the next morning to do those pictures.

Well it was hard.

You flew back to Gatwick, really early in the morning, you were in Portsmouth before lunchtime, we went to the sea. You were tired and not well and I made you go in the water. I wasn’t in a very good place either and my hand was bleeding while I was shooting in the salt water, it was painful.

I know and it’s crazy because the whole time we were doing this shoot neither of us stopped to think, what are we doing? We were both going through really awful life experiences but we just kept doing this very unnecessary but seemingly important thing. It was painful. But in a sense I thought, what else is there to do anyway? Emotionally I was torn apart.

It was terrible. And I still knew they were going to be good photos. But you just said before that this is the kind of stuff I like. In a way I was quite brutal. Do you think I was glamorising someone having a bad time or was it just real life?

I also take responsibility. I could have turned around at any point saying I don’t want this to happen. But even in the sad times, I thought, I allow you. At least the sadness, or the happiness of whatever I was doing has been documented. Why does that make things better or more meaningful?
If you decide to give something meaning by taking photos so be it. I also think it’s a way of controlling things, taking them into your own hands, turning them into art, not just me taking the pictures, you also had to travel there, be in the water forever, have ideas. I felt good at the end of that shoot, much better than in the morning.

Conheça mais sobre o trabalho de: Allan, Zabenzi, Britta