The Imperfectionist: Helena Christensen, NY Times

The Imperfectionist

December 14, 2008

By Karin Nelson

HELENA CHRISTENSEN, the Danish supermodel turned fashion and art photographer, is probably the only person complaining that the iPhone takes quality photos. ”I’ll shake it as much as I can,” she said, a note of disdain in her voice. ”But it still comes out perfect.” Her photography, which has appeared in French and Italian Vogue and will go on view Monday at the Dactyl Foundation, is decidedly less perfect. ”It’s the blurriness and imperfection that I love,” she explained. ”And that strange feeling that the light can create.”

Shot mainly in Denmark and upstate New York, the landscape images, soft-focus abstractions of light, color and form, have an eerie, ethereal beauty, as if the viewer had witnessed a sublime moment in nature before putting in his or her contact lenses. Some of the photos were in fact taken with an archaic camera phone. ”I’ll see something and react to it, and sometimes it’s the only thing I have on me,” Ms. Christensen said, adding that every photo printer hates her. ”They’re like, ‘What am I going to do with these?’ ”

Helena Christensen, ”Far From, Close,” runs Dec. 15 to Jan. 10 at Dactyl Foundation, 64 Grand Street;

A portion of the sales will benefit International Center of Photography educational programs and Chernobyl Children’s Project International.