Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Mark Power - new bookwork: Destroying the Laboratory for the Sake of the Experiment


British photographer Mark Power has just released a new self published book Destroying the Laboratory for the Sake of the Experiment. Power is a member of Magnum Photos and Professor of Photography in The Faculty of Arts and Architecture at the University of Brighton, he works in a documentary fashion, using large format. His pictures always surprise and are loaded with meaning. His first book The Shipping Forecast, published in 1997 by Zelda Cheatle is one of my favorite photobooks.

Mark says this about Destroying the Laboratory for the Sake of the Experiment.
Beginning in 2006 and continuing (when time allowed) over the next four years, the poet Daniel Cockrill and I made several road trips across England, stopping at a range of towns and cities along the way. We were trying to better understand the rise of nationalism then (as now) evident in the UK, as well as notions of Englishness, concepts much discussed in the media at the time. In a true collaboration, in that we always travelled together and experienced much the same things, Dan would write poems and I would photograph. As time progressed we witnessed our country slide into recession and the government introduce austerity measures, although little seemed to alter in the fabric of the landscape. What we did notice was something more abstract, more of a state of mind among the population as many began to blame others - and immigration in particular - for perceived misfortunes. Dan attempted to catch something of this mood in his poetry while I continued to photograph the backdrop against which the story unfolded. Although we concluded the work in 2010 with an exhibition in London (when we collaborated with the sculptor Jim Wilson and, in particular, the designer Dominic Brookman, who created several ‘treatments’ of poems and pictures) it was not until now that we’ve chosen to self-publish the book. Looking at the work now, with the benefit of hindsight, it’s possible to sense the changing mood in the country, of which last month’s BREXIT vote was perhaps the sad but inevitable conclusion. 
Published by Globtik Books (2016) / Designed by Dominic Brookman / Kenosha Design
Edition: 1500, signed by Mark Power / 228 pages (Numerous colour photographs, 16 poems, illustrations, foldouts, die-cut pages, etc) / Hardback with foldout jacket, 250 x 160mm / ISBN: 978–0–9930830–1–3 / £26

Destroying the Laboratory for the Sake of the Experiment, is available now through Mark Power's website HERE.

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