Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Some pictures of the exhibition: "An Ethereal World" - up until June 19th.

Here it is before I fly off to Djibouti until June 15th. As South China Morning Post suggested, we had about 300 people that came through during the opening, on May 18th.

I just held 2 private viewing on May 25th, and we will have an open day at the gallery on Saturday June 19th, where I will be present all day. If anyone wants to have a chat and listen to more stories, please come!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Today's South China Morning Post, about my ongoing exhibition...

Exhibition's opening was a great success, with over 200 people that came through on May 18th - a great birthday gift! But more about this later, with pictures etc...

Here is an article that just came out today in South China Morning post, before the day is gone...:

Exhibition: An Ethereal World: Journeys to the Edges of Asia - Picture This Gallery, Until Jun 12th 2010

© Yvonne Teh
May 20, 2010

Matthieu Paley has literally come a long way since working in a provincial town in the north of France "where, if you were a photographer, you'd be working on the main street doing portraits for ID cards". He spent some years in Jakarta and New York before moving to Hong Kong in 2002.

Currently based in Shek O, the Frenchman - who celebrated his 37th birthday two days ago, the same day his exhibition at Picture This Gallery opened - has travelled to, and worked in, several parts of Asia, including remote regions such as the Pamir Knot, the name given to a mountainous area where Pakistan, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and China meet.

An Ethereal World: Journeys to the Edges of Asia, which is part of this year's Le French May, consists of 17 photographs taken in a part of the world Paley first visited in 1999 after a conversation with a Pakistani man in New York.

"I was so ignorant then," Paley recalls, adding he wasn't even aware there were mountains in the country. But after his first visit to the region,  "I got hooked. I have been back there every year ever since."

Paley and his German wife Mareile spent time in a secluded lake village in the Baltistan region of northern Pakistan. "One day we went there and the water was low and my wife was just walking there and I took a picture and that's it, you know? It's a great memory for me when I look at it," the photographer-explorer says of Kachura (picture below).

Another, more famous body of water, Siberia's Lake Baikal, is the setting for other works in the exhibition. The dark blue water in Ice Rider hints at how deep the voluminous freshwater lake is (more than 1,600 metres) and how clear it is. That the ice on the lake is up to 1.5 metres thick and able to support a horse and rider is a sign of how cold and long the winters are. While most people stay away from Siberia in winter, that's when Paley prefers to visit.

"In winter, things slow down and I think that, as a photographer, when things slow down, it gives me more time to see things, to capture them," he says. For another, "I love wintry conditions because it brings [out] something special in people to be able to live in these harsh conditions".

One of them is Marbet, a young Afghan Kyrgyz girl, who thinks nothing of being out in temperatures of minus 30 degrees Celsius. Paley photographed the red-cheeked girl soon after she came in from the cold, where she had been tending her father's goats. "[Marbet] dropped one of the tiny goats by the fire. And I said, 'Just sit there,' and she sat there, and she looked like this and I took her picture."

Mon-Sat, PictureThis Gallery, 11am-6pm, Suite 1308, 13/F Office Tower, 9 Queen's Road Central. Inquiries: 2525 2820

Friday, May 14, 2010

Taste of Mongolia (that would be mutton...) in this month's Travel & Leisure

Travel & Leisure features a portfolio of some of my Mongolia images in this month's edition. See it below. Voila!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Exhibition opening on Tuesday May 18th, 6-9pm, PictureThis Gallery

Almost there! My exhibition will open up next Tuesday May 18th. Here you can see the invitation to the opening of my exhibition.  This is supported by the French May, see it here.
And below, extracts from the invitation.

Hope to see you there!


An Ethereal World - Journeys to the edges of Asia

Opening reception with the photographer  -  Tuesday 18th May, 6 - 9pm
Picture This Gallery, 13th Floor, 9 Queen's Road Central, HK
At 7pm, Matthieu Paley will make a short presentation about his works
The Exhibition continues until Saturday, 12th June 2010


Living in Hong Kong since 2002, but spending much of his time in the most remote and often highest altitude corners of Asia, Matthieu Paley is an intrepid explorer and award winning photographer. This exhibition comprises 17 photographs taken since 1999 in Afghanistan,Tajikistan, Pakistan and Siberia, shot with a mix of medium format and 35mm film. Paley's work is not easily or simply acquired. Most of these photographs are taken in the depths of winter when the environment is at its most harsh and inhospitable and temperatures drop to 30 below zero, providing the best light and working conditions for Paley's ethereal and inspiring photographs.

Paley's work has been exhibited at galleries in France, New York and Munich as well as at the Perpignan Photojournalism Festival, Visa Pour L'Image and the Banff Mountain Festival, where he won the 2009 Mountain Culture Photography Competition.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Mongolia revisited, Royal Geographical Society, Ulysses, monsters and wonder-woman

Over the last 5 days, I prepared over 130 images for print in my upcoming book on Mongolia, which will come out at the Editions de la Martinière in France, at the end of September. The color proofs are done in France but the actual book print will be done here in Hong Kong, allowing us to supervise it, which is a treat..
I have attached a few new image scans from Mongolia, including (last image) a picture of a TV screen of a movie that played in a yurt once.

After some YouTube research, I am sure it was Ulysses, from 1954, by italian movie director Mario Camerini. Just the stuff of dream I think. I had to put the link too. In the same lineage, Sindbad The Sailor from 1958, is just fantastic. The beginning of animation, and I think incredibly haunting. I am a big fan!

 Text and design of the Mongolia book is by Mareile, my wife, who is a multi-talented wonder-woman, mother, company owner, financial adviser, web designer and... passionate Pilates instructor! As some of you might know, she will be hosting a retreat in Bali from June 19th until June 26th. Have a look here.
I won't be able to join her as I will be hosting a lecture/movie screening of our Pamir movie at the Royal Geographical Society in Hong Kong around this time. Details will soon come on the venue and exact date.

Follow this link for an intrepid travel with Sindbad and the fast moving island monsters.