S-Portraits: Leonard Bundu

Photographs by David Andre Weiss

September 20th, 2011 – November 13th, 2011

Weiss enters the gym where boxer Leonard Bundu trains to capture the fatigue behind the rounds and matches. The portraits of the Florentine welterweight champion reveal the intensity of a noble sport.

David Andre Weiss is not new to photographs of filthy gyms where shady types sweat and swear revenge upon their mum tattoos. Here is a different story: what emerges from these large format photos is the portrait of a young man whose life is synonymous with boxing, his profession and sport. The images are able to convey energy and movement while elevating the moments to timeless, mythological fights where Man faces Life to survive. Weiss exalts the velvety Caravaggio-like colors, imposes them to the sight and charge them with symbolism. The fighters’ feet leave energetic strokes on the palette of the floor; the ropes of the ring glow in the darkness, while the sweat expands in the thick air of gyms.

David Andre Weiss (Chicago, USA, 1962) does not categorize his work according to specific forms or fields. His concepts and projects span from art direction to editorials, photojournalism, street photography as well as corporate work. The concept is about codifying and re-codifying an image originally belonging to documentary photography into a work of art, “filtered and expanded through a language that is my own. It is up to the viewer to take my perspective and apply his/her own criteria and knowledge to stimulate memory, invention and place.” A creative chameleon, Weiss constantly changes his way of viewing, shooting and processing his subjects/works. He received a formal education in Art History at the University of Chicago under the mentorship of Professor Joel Snyder, and graduated from the International Center of Photography in New York City in 1987. His work has been published in the various newspapers and magazines worldwide. He currently lives and works in Florence, Italy, where he is the Department Chair of DIVA, the school of Digital Imaging and Visual Arts at Florence University of the Arts.

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