Thursday, October 31, 2013

Paris in November


I leave for Paris today and will be hanging out there for most of November. If any of my Paris photo-friends or those in town for Paris Photo feel like a coffee or a beer, please get in touch, either thru facebook or my email:

Here are few photographs I made in Paris last November...

My blog is going into hibernation until first week of December.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The 6th FotoBookFestival opens today in Kassel

The 6th FotoBookFestival pays homage to Daido Moriyama's book opus through numerous programme items and `events.

Daido Moriyama is one of the most important living photographers and photobook makers of current times. His career began during the sixties in Tokyo, where he became a member of the influential Provoke group that created the most important style of Japanese post-war avant-garde photography. His oeuvre plays a central part in the establishment of Japanese photography as one of the important creative developments in the history of photography. In more than 50 years, Moriyama gained fame through his coarse, contrast-rich, partly unfocussed and highly grainy black-and-white photography, in which he deals which urban experiences, especially around the streets of Tokyo. His immense influence on young Japanese artists continues to date. Apart from B+W photography, Moriyama works with color, Polaroid’s, screen-printing, film, texts and installation. His fame is predominantly due to the more than 150 photobooks that he has continuously published, including masterpieces like Japan, A Photo Theatre (1968), Farewell Photography (1972), Light & Shadow (1982) and Shinjuku (2002).

During three action packed days there will be lectures and presentations from Gerry Badger, Remi Coignet, Gosta Flemming, Aron Morel, Ferdinand Bruggemann, Yasunori Hoki, Simon Baker, John Gossage and much more. Plus the Photobook Dummy Award.

You can see the full programme HERE.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

SUPER LABO - new photobooks from PHOTOBOOKSTORE UK

Featured in PHOTOBOOKSTORE's October newsletter (No 2) is a range of edgy new titles from Japanese publisher SUPER LABO.

Marrakech by Daido Moriyama looks sure to continue the SUPER LABO’s successful run.  Featuring images from Moriyama’s trip to the fabled city over 25 years ago, Marrakech is presented in a very unusual two books within one design, which in turn our housed in a slipcased hardback.  A limited edition of 500 copies, Marrakech looks sure to sell out sooner rather than later, and in stock now HERE.

Chris Shaw’s photos are currently paired with Moriyama’s in an exhibition at Tate Britain, and his new book Weeds Of Wallasey is SUPER LABO’s second release of the month. Weeds of Wallasey is a series of black and white photographs taken on the Wirral in the Bidston Valley. As Chris Shaw explains, “ I observed and documented the battle between nature and a post industrial blight, to express my own feelings about a landscape I grew up in, my roots, my weeds…”.  A slipcased edition of 500 copies.  Weeds of Wallasey is in stock now HERE.  

Similarly elegantly presented, Stilll by Terri Weifenbach is her second book with SUPER LABO following last year’s 17 days.  This slipcased impeccably printed hardback contains images taken in the suburban areas of the photographers hometown, Washington DC.  See our video preview of Stilll, and order your copy of  this limited edition book edition book HERE.  

You can see all of PHOTOBOOKSTORE's SUPER LABO titles (which also include recent release Make by Shomei Tomastsu) and a number of out of print books HERE. 

For those who will be in Paris for Paris Photo SUPER LABO will have a booth in the Grande Palais where various book signings will take place.

Sunday, October 13, 2013 independent imprint for photography

Formerly known as Lay Flat, Lavalette is an independent publisher of limited edition photography books and multiples. Founded in 2009 by photographer Shane Lavalette, the studio works collaboratively with emerging and established artists to produce books that both express a vision and exist as artful objects in themselves. In addition to artist books, they publish Lay Flat, a periodic journal devoted to contemporary photography in which each issue takes on a new theme and format.

Lavalette's latest publication available for pre-order

Lavalette also produces an action packed blog which you can go to HERE. The blog publishes a series of "conversations" where regular contributors such as Lucas Blalock and Tim Davis talk to practitioners who are engaged with the contemporary and cutting edge coal face of photography, most decidedly about now and certainly not then.

Lucas Blalock in conversation with Kate Steciw
Judging from the 6,437 facebook likes I'm not the only one who values Lavalette as an important photography resource, well worth keeping an eye on. You can go there HERE.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Pieter Hugo - KIN at Stevenson Cape Town

Thabile Kadeni, Langa, 2013
Pieter Hugo's profound and deeply moving series KIN opens next week at Stevenson Cape Town. Made over the last eight years Hugo turns a critical but loving eye on his homeland. Hugo ventures into cramped townships, contested farmlands, abandoned mining areas,  and sites of political significance. He has looked at drifters and the homeless; his pregnant wife, and his daughter moments after her birth; the domestic servants who have worked for the Hugo family over three generations. The series alternates between intimate and public spaces, with particular emphasis on the growing disparity between rich and poor, and reveals Hugo's deeply conflicted feelings about his home. It confronts complex issues of colonization, racial diversity and economic disparity.

Hugo describes the work: engagement with the failure of the South African colonial experiment and my sense of being 'colonial driftwood' ... South Africa is such a fractured, schizophrenic, wounded and problematic place. It is a very violent society and the scars of colonialism and apartheid still run very deep. Issues of race and cultural custodianship permeate every aspect of society, and the legacy of forced racial segregation casts a long shadow ... How does one live in this society? How does one take responsibility for history, and to what extent should one try? How do you raise a family in such a conflicted society? Before getting married and having children, these questions did not trouble me; now, they are more confusing. This work attempts to address these questions and to reflect on the nature of conflicting personal and collective narratives. I have deeply mixed feelings about being here. I am interested in the places where these narratives collide. Kin is an attempt at evaluating the gap between society's ideals and its realities. 

Cape Town, 2009

Louis Mantanisa, Cape Town, 2013

Green Point Common, Cape Town, 2013
You can see more on the STEVENSON site HERE. And Pieter Hugo's site HERE.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Clare Strand - SKIRTS

It is always a pleasure when something arrives in my post office box that looks like a book. A photobook to be precise. And so it was this morning with the unexpected arrival of Clare Strand's new bookwork SKIRTS. Thank you Clare.

Clare Strand is a conceptual artist. Her work deals with the nature of things and her photographs do what photography does best - an examination of the ordinary and the mystery to be found in the everyday. Phillipe Starck says in his introduction to SKIRTS, one of art's distinctions is to provide maximum emotion using minimum means. Clare Strand delivers. Strand's work is simple yet substantial and wryl intelligent, and thankfully avoids the cleverness that I increasingly see in work, generally made by photographers in the absence of an idea.

Subject matter dominates her work – photography and film are the mediums through which her enquiries are mapped. Strand is interested by imagery in which the aesthetic are secondary to function. Taking inspiration from forensic imagery, instruction manuals, the conventions of signage, the mechanics of spirit photography and photography employed to offer evidence of an event or a task, her work treads the uncertain boundaries between the expected and the absurd.

SKIRTS is a beautifully realized hardback work published by GOST in an edition of 500 copies. It is available from PHOTOBOOKSTORE in the UK - HERE.

You can see more on Clare Strand's website - HERE.

Monday, October 7, 2013

My new book - SOME THINGS YOU SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME - where to get it

This post in particular is for those in New Zealand interested in getting their hands on a copy of my new book SOME THINGS YOU SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME, published by Dewi Lewis in the UK. There will be no distribution of this book in NZ. Instead the book is easily obtainable from these online outlets:

PHOTOBOOKSTORE in the UK, HERE, where you can see a vimeo run through of the book.

Book Depository in the UK, HERE, who also have a range of my other books works.

amazon USA, HERE, also with a range of my books.

For anybody interested in any of my small edition, self published artist's books, I still have a few copies left of some of the titles and for purchase I can be contacted directly.

William Eggleston once asked Harvey Benge - What are you doing these days? Photographing the urban social landscape, said Benge. Don't talk bullshit; what are you doing? Eggleston insisted. Making strange pictures in cities, replied Benge. However you look at them, Harvey Benge's photographs are mostly urban and generally strange. His work is mysterious; nothing is solid. The pictures capture contrasts and conflicts which leave you wondering what has just happened and what might happen next. He gives voice to the mundane and overlooked. His open-ended photographic sequences record small moments of everyday life that flash past with tension and ambiguity: an urban dream on the edge of reality where figures retreat, seats are empty, phones don't work. Any and every interpretation is a valid interpretation. What is going on? You decide. With photographs made in Paris, London, New York and Rome, this new intensely personal, some might say autobiographical book, is enigmatically entitled 'Some Things You Should Have Told Me'. It is a remorseless meditation on loss and misadventure, pain and impermanence, the inevitability of change. Questions are asked; there are no answers.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Christian Patterson, Alessandra Sanguinetti, Raymond Meeks, Wolfgang Tillmans - TBW Subscription series #4


TBW books have just announced their latest subscription series, number 4, with bookworks from Christian Patterson, Alessandra Sanguinetti, Raymond Meeks and Wolfgang Tillmans. Each case-bound book is 9 x 11 inches and runs to 40 pages.

BOOK #1 Christian Patterson, Bottom of the Lake
With Bottom of the Lake, Christian Patterson revisits his hometown of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin (French for "Bottom of the Lake") and weaves together visual threads related to the town's iconography, climate and culture.Christian Patterson lives in Brooklyn, New York. His monograph, Redheaded Peckerwood, was published by MACK in 2011 to international critical acclaim, nominated for the 2012 Kraszna-Krausz Book Awards and won the prestigious 2012 Recontres d’Arles Author Book Award. He was awarded a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in 2013.

BOOK #2 Alessandra Sanguinetti, Sorry, Welcome
Sorry, Welcome is a glimpse into the artists life the way it looked throughout the winter of 2012/13. Sanguinetti shot over a short period of time in which she took a step back and became a voyeur of her own life. The images were made in and around her home in San Francisco Ca. and explores dynamics between the union of two unique families. Alessandra Sanguinetti lives and works in San Francisco and Buenosa Aires. She has published two books with Nazraeli Press: On the Sixth Day and The Adventures of Guille and Belinda and the Enigmatic Meaning of their Dreams. She is a recipient of a John Simon Guggenheim fellowship, a Recontres de Arles Discovery Award, a Hasslblad and a Robert Gardner Fellowship.

BOOK #3 Raymond Meeks, Erasure
Erasure signals a transition from photographic narratives centered on collaboration with Meeks’ immediate family toward an outward gaze; making order of the unfamiliar surroundings of his new home in Providence R.I. Using printing techniques of both over exposing and laying a "base fog" to the image surface, Meeks is literally masking what he deems "the painful and ugly" in his view of the world. This method of darkroom-photoshop creates a truly unsettling yet beautifully unique book. Raymond Meeks currently resides and works in Providence, Rhode Island. His documenting of family and place have been at the cornerstone of his work and in publications with Nazraeli Press, as well as self-published artist books under his imprint, Dumbsaint.

BOOK #4 Wolfgang Tillmans, Utoquai 
Tillmans closes out the subscription with his book Utoquai that is both classically his own while still pushing the language of photography forward, something that has become synonymous with his name. With Utoquai, Tillmans focuses on a single subject and openly presents his ongoing friendship and unrequited love in a way that is compelling, adventurous and vulnerable in equal measures. Wolfgang Tillmans is a German artist who lives and works in London and Berlin. He was first recognized in the early 1990s for his affecting and unconventional images of friends and other young people in his social circle. Since then Tillmans’ subject matter has broadened combining portraits, still-lifes and landscapes with abstract and sculptural photographic works hung in carefully considered wall installations. This fusion of different photographic practices and a continuous production of artist books is spurred by his personal experiences of life and a strong political engagement. He won the Turner prize in 2000.

You can preview Christian Patterson's  Bottom of the Lake on Vimeo by going HERE.

To order the subscription series number 4, you can go to TBW Books site HERE.