Friday, December 22, 2017

Tim Carpenter - Local Objects

If I was making a list of my top photobooks for 2017 Tim Carpenter's new bookwork Local Objects would certainly be on the list. With 74 medium format back and white images there is more than a hint of Lewis Baltz's Tract Works and John Gossge's The Pond. What Local Objects has in common with the forementioned is a quiet understated certainty. Carpenter's images are a testament to less being more and intelligence killing cleverness. In many of the images there is something going on that is not quite right, these landscapes are not what the surface suggests. The pictures seem to present an alien world, yet it's achingly familiar too. What's more I'm left wondering what might have just happened and what is about to. Strangeness prevails. I wish I had made many of these pictures. 

Publisher The Ice Plant says this: Borrowing its title from the Wallace Stevens poem in which “little existed for him but the few things / for which a fresh name always occurred,” Tim Carpenter’s Local Objects is a solid yet remarkably unassuming body of work: a calm, steady rhythm of 74 medium format photographs made in the semi-rural American Midwest. While each picture meticulously frames the seemingly random non-activity of a typical ‘street view’ image, Carpenter’s contemplative sequencing allows a surprising harmony of natural and geometric motifs to modulate quietly throughout the book — an interplay of minor chords that draw the viewer into this specific physical place(mostly central Illinois, where he grew up) and the subjective, literary space of the work. Detached from the urgency of current affairs, stripped of all excess, Carpenter’s photographs reflect a poetic attempt to see “the thing in itself,” to make meaning with the barest tools possible.
144 pages / 7.5 x 8.5 in. / Clothbound hardcover / 74 duotone / Edition of 750 copies

You can see more on Tim Carpenter's website HERE and The Ice Plant HERE.

No comments: