International Photographers of the Year Ian and Erick Regnard will exhibit their award-winning Floating Bits collection at Brisbane’s Maud St Photo Gallery from October 22 to November 12, 2022 for the first time on Australia’s East Coast, to celebrate Erick making Brisbane his new home.
The twin brothers achieved the almost-impossible in 2007 by taking photos underwater on Polaroid 4×5 large format film for the first time ever in the world to create Floating Bits and the resulting incredible photos won the Regnard’s International Photographers of the Year in New York in 2010 at the International Photography Awards in the special category, and numerous awards around the world since.
Featuring a nude woman, Floating Bits is inspired by the need to be alone, but knowing that there is a presence somehow lurking closer. The collection was shot on Niue, a Pacific Island east of Tonga. This island is made up entirely out of limestone and when it rains, the impurities are filtered from the water, resulting in crystal clear water and visibility for 60 to 100 metres.
The images were taken underwater with a mix of a large format 4×5 Polaroid film and medium format 6×6 film on a camera that the brothers adapted especially for the shoot. The large format Polaroid required 15kg around the housing to make it sink, and only one shot could be taken at a time.
In addition to the full Floating Bits collection, some images from the A Thousand Kisses Deep collection featuring a different model photographed with sensuous sting-rays off Tahiti will also be showcased.
Ian said the Floating Bits project had the brothers and the model shooting eight hours a day, taking one photo per hour, for two weeks. “Due to the long amount of time each image took, we chose models who were at ease in water, and had a strong lung capacity.
“Due to the complexity of shooting with this type of camera (not being able to see through the lens to frame the photo) and the format of the film, the images obtained are highly regarded as unique.”
Erick moved from Perth to Brisbane just as the pandemic hit in 2020, so this exhibition to share his and Ian’s passion, creativity and artistry in his new home town has been many months in the making. Floating Bits has only been exhibited previously in Perth to great acclaim, and the unique, underwater format pioneered by Ian and Erick has featured in National Geographic.
“All the images are limited edition prints with some already sold out. The composition and journey of the work is something I look forward to sharing with everyone in my new home town.”
The adapted camera that was used to create the images will also be on display at the exhibition, along with a video explaining how the award-winning images were captured. The exhibition is supported by Tag Heuer, Calexico and Calexico Men, Howard Park Wines and Corona, with a portion of proceeds being donated to water.org.
Location: Maud St Photo Gallery, 6 Maud St, Newstead Entry Cost: Free