When Kim Powell traveled to Sri Lanka in 2007 on a professional photo shoot, she never imagined she would begin her own artistic and philosophical journey. Her exhibition of photos at the Mona Bismarck Foundation which opens today in Paris touches upon the five senses, and offers the visitor a chance to absorb the visual and sensual richness of Sri Lanka.
Powell has captured the soul of a country and people who, historically, have faced many challenges from terrorism and civil war to natural disasters like the tsunami in December 2005. One would not expect the serenity in the faces, the peacefulness in the landscape. "Sri Lanka was not at all what I imagined," she says.
The American photographer who has lived and worked in Paris for the past 15 years, studied photography at SPEOS, Parsons School of Design and the International School of Photography, New York. In France, her work has been exhibited at UNESCO, the Logis Royal in Loches and Paris Photographique. Kim Powell’s commercial photography includes the publication Bit by Fleas, a guide to the Paris flea markets.
Kim Powell has already been involved in other Mona Bismarck Foundation exhibitions photographing the Marianne North Gallery at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, and providing the catalogue photography for Hubert de Givenchy’s Perfection Partagée: Mona Bismarck, Cristóbal Balenciaga. In 2008 Kim Powell was featured in My-Linh Kunst’s, Beyond Borders: Portraits of American Women from around the World.
The Mona Bismarck Foundation, created in the 1980s by the American philanthropist, the Countess Mona Bismarck, is an American foundation with a Paris Cultural Center located opposite the Eiffel Tower. The Foundation’s eclectic exhibition program, always free of charge, has mounted over 70 exhibitions in the past 20 years, many introducing emerging American artists to a European public.
Lalande Digital Art Press Paris technical wizard Robert Ruscoe worked closely with the Mona Bismarck Foundation in producing a gorgeous catalog (20 euros) and the digital prints for Kim Powell.
Mona Bismarck Foundation : 34 avenue de New York, 75116 Paris. Free Admission. Days and opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 10:30 a.m. – 18:30 p.m. – Closed on holidays. Tel : 01 47 23 38 88 Metro: Alma-Marceau, Iena, Trocadéro. Bus: 72 – 63 – 94.