Monday, April 30, 2012


If you happen to be in Philadelphia this coming Saturday, May 5, Philadelphia Photo Arts is conducting their 3rd Annual book Fair.  There will be a number of local, national and international presses, publishers and artists in attendance selling books, prints and other ephemera.

Here's a list of participants: Gottlund Verlag / Sun System Press / A-Jump Books / Schematic Quarterly / Chad States / Debutante Hair / Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University / Vox Populi / Bodega Press / Visual Studies Workshop / Preacher’s Biscuit Books / Spaces Corners / MACK / Miniature Garden / NOWORK / Empty Stretch / Conveyor Arts / Indie Photobook Library / Lay Flat / Mossless / Swill Children / Chad Muthard / Christopher Gianunzio and Jenny Tondera / Light Work 
Curated Tables: Roma Publications / Little Brown Mushroom / Paula McCartney  / Lex Thompson / Loosestrife Editions / Hamburger Eyes / Megawords

And book signings by Ron Jude, Benjamin Lowy and Ed Panar


Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Photobook - 10 Golden Rules for photobook designers

I came across the following slide show, 10 Golden Rules for Photobook Designers. Designers and photographers should commit these rules to memory. I couldn't find a link to this so I could credit, if anybody knows please let me know. Not surprisingly the post originated in The Netherlands, home of some of the best book designers anywhere.

Since making this post my friend Gabriele in Hamburg tells me that the author of the photobook designer rules is the Dutch designer Sybren Kuiper who among other things designed Viviane Sassen's book Flamboya. You can see more HERE.

TIMEMACHINE magazine, issue 5 online now

TIMEMACHINE is an online magazine featuring contemporary photographic projects. The theme for the fifth issue is Elergy and the issue features work by David Cook (NZ), Andrew Cowen (AUS), Stephen Dupont (AUS), Elizabeth Heyert (US), Georgia Metaxas (AUS), Heidi Romano (AUS), Rebecca Norris Webb (US) and Magaret Inga Wiatrowski (POL). There is also a book reviews page with responses from Cara Hine on Vivian Maier: Street Photographer and Sean Davey on Nobuyoshi Araki's Sentimental Journey.

Here are some photographs made by New Zealander David Cook from his series RIVER ROAD.


Friday, April 27, 2012

Photographers whose work I like - No17/ Jason Evans

Today's photograph from The Daily Nice
I met Jason Evans at the Kassel Photobook Festival last year. We were in the same hotel together at the top of the hill and we walked, talked and photographed together on our way down hill to the Documenta space. Jason struck me as a friendly fuck you sort of person, impatient with conformity, not good with compromise, the expected, or the seen-it-all-before. I'd never seen his work but I knew I'd like it.
And yes, I do like his work. A lot.

Jason has a varied practice. He is equally interested in making an album cover, an editorial fashion story or a gallery project. He enjoys the dialogues of collaboration and prefers working intuitively. He also writes about photography for various publications, including Photoworks and Aperture, and is the author of several online photography projects, including The New Scent and The Daily Nice. And you can go to his website HERE.

Here are some of his photographs:

And this piece in UK's WeHeart Magazine is worth a read HERE

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Harvey Benge at Diplomat Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

Diplomat is a gallery in Philadelphia, PA, that showcases the work of international artists working in the medium of photography. Each month the gallery exhibits either a solo or group exhibition featuring artist(s) from one specific country.
Working with gallery director Chad Muthard, a show of my work, running through May, has been curated under the New Zealand banner.

Chad has this to say about the show:
Diplomat is pleased to announce a curatorial collaboration between Harvey Benge and myself to bring you and your loved ones To New Zealand, a solo exhibition featuring twenty-six photographs from eight different bodies of work.
It’s simple, but then again complex. It’s logical, yet at the same time utterly confusing. It’s here today, gone tomorrow, and simultaneously never ending. It’s having the courage to attempt to understand or care for another individual and empathize with the good, the bad, & the ugly.

The opening reception will take place Friday, May 11th from 6-9pm with the exhibition itself running until June 4th, 2012.

2016 Green Street
Philadelphia, PA 19130

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Saatchi Gallery London, Out of Focus

The first major photography exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery, London, since the highly acclaimed and controversial 2001 show I Am a Camera, presents 38 artists who offer an international perspective on current trends in photography, working with the medium in diverse, innovative and arresting ways. This exhibition comes at a time when the world of photography is going through one of its richest and also most complicated moments. Millions of images are being uploaded onto the internet every day making available more visual stimuli than ever before; old ideas about ’professional’ and ‘amateur’ photographers are being upturned; the traditional boundaries between various territories within the world of photography – fashion, documentary, advertising and art – are blurring into one another in unexpected, exciting and not always tension-free ways; and even the labels ‘artist’ and ‘photographer’ are the subject of debate (Olaf Breuning responds to this thorny topic by describing himself as “a four-wheel drive, all-purpose terrain vehicle”). Against the backdrop of this new world of the photographic image, Out of Focus brings together 38 artists from the US, UK, Japan, South Africa, Australia, Switzerland, France, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Turkey and Benin. Their work challenges the received rules and regulations of the medium. They have shared concerns – the body and gender tensions, mind and memory, a sense of place and home, the face, bonds of family, friends, tribes and other subcultures – but display a huge range of approaches from classic documentary photography to the reworking of found images, from capturing collaborative performances to photographs of three-dimensional assemblages themselves made out of photographs.

Out of Focus features works by Michele Abeles, Leonce Raphael Agbodjélou, Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin, Olaf Breuning, Jonny Briggs, Elina Brotherus, Anders Clausen, Mat Collishaw, J H Engström, Mitch Epstein, Andreas Gefeller, Daniel Gordon, Noémie Goudal, Katy Grannan, Luis Gispert, Matthew Day Jackson, Chris Levine, Matt Lipps, Ryan McGinley, Mohau Modisakeng, Laurel Nakadate, Sohei Nishino, David Noonan, Marlo Pascual, Mariah Robertson, Hannah Sawtell, David Benjamin Sherry, Meredyth Sparks, Hannah Starkey, John Stezaker, A L Steiner, Mikhael Subotzky, Yumiko Utsu, Sara VanDerBeek, Nicole Wermers, Jennifer West and Pinar Yolaçan.

JH Engström Nude 3, 2005
 Saatchi Gallery, London, 25 April - 22 July 2012


Mark Page is a photographer, book maker and super blogger from Manchester in the UK. Back in February 2011, after nearly four years, 1517 posts and 182,352 unique visitors he threw in the towel. What a pleasure to see that he is back with his irreverent, provocative and shit-stirring blog MANCHESTER PHOTOGRAPHY. Mark does for photography blogging what the Boston strangler did for door-to-door salesman. His blog is a wonderful antidote to the self serving, overly serious and pontificating. But not without substance. Well worth a look! You can go to it ....HERE

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Auckland - some things I saw yesterday and some pictures I made

You know what it's like, some days you go out and you see nothing. Other days you see everything. Yesterday was an everything kind of day. Here are a few pictures I made, sequenced in the order I shot them. Isn't the world strange when you look closely and isn't it amazing how things coexist.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Paris - 5th International Photobook Festival

At Le Bal’s invitation, the 5th International Photobook Festival will be held this weekend in Paris, in this the documenta year. From today through Saturday and Sunday the photographic book will be the focus.  Apart from a riveting program of lectures and a curated market place, the festival will also present the 2012 Dummy and Photobook Awards.

One of Saturday's highlights will be the 12 noon presentation of the second edition of The PhotoBook Review. This follows edition one which was presented at last year's Paris Photo.  This time around the guest editor is Markus Schaden and judging from the cover the content will be solid. This edition covers photobook development and sequencing,  interviews with Ken Schles and Christian Patterson and pieces on Paul Graham and Michael Schmidt among others.
At 12 noon Remi Coignet will welcome Chris Boot from Aperture and Markus Schaden, in a panel discussion.
Not to be missed, I wish I was in Paris!

Aperture / fotobookfestival / le-bal /

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Palais de Tokyo reopens in Paris

Originally built for the World’s Fair in 1937, the Palais de Tokyo went on to serve as a cinema school, an archival space and, briefly, a squat. Ten months of renovations have brought back into use 14,000 square meters (150,000 square feet) of space left derelict through years of budget constraints and squabbling over whether the Palais was an incubator for young talent or a more conservative, faithful supporter of established French artists. Judging by the first new elements of programming, both demands seem to be catered to, in labyrinthine rooms and corridors that sprawl across four floors that architects Lacaton and Vassal have left under-developed to perfection. It remains to be seen how its new director Jean de Loisy and his curators fare with a Berlin-style industrial concrete site that can be both gracious and unyielding.

The space, which is now Europe's largest centre for contemporary art, opened with fanfair last week with the Paris Triennale - Intense Proximité. Curated by Okwui Enwezor, a Nigerian-born critic and poet, along with four young curators, the Triennale offers a mind boggling inventory of contemporary art at the confluence of the French scene and international centers of creation.

At a few minutes past 6 pm last Thursday, the doors opened to the tuba-like bellows of foghorns from the roof of the Palais, announcing the rebirth — and symbolically, a new maiden voyage — for a several mile radius around Paris. This was a performance, dubbed “Air de Jeu,” by Fouad Bouchoucha, and it is destined to be immortalized through a film featuring recordings that the artist’s assistants made at different historic places while Bouchoucha tooted his horns, which have been reclaimed from decommissioned ships.

The Palais de Tokyo atrium with Maria Loboda’s “Walldrawing”, “Fear Eats The Soul”
Claude Cattelain performing “Armature variable”, at the reopening of the Palais de Tokyo
Ulla von Brandenburg’s site-specific intervention “Death of a King”, at the heart of the Palais de Tokyo
Intense Proximité runs until 26th August. The museum is open everyday (not Monday) noon until midnight.  Métro: Alma-Marceau or Iéna.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Daido Moriyama at LACMA

Shinjuku #11 2000
Photographer Daido Moriyama (Japan, b. 1938) first came to prominence in the mid-1960s with his gritty depictions of Japanese urban life. His highly innovative and intensely personal photographic approach often incorporates high contrast, graininess, and tilted vantages to convey the fragmentary nature of modern realities. Fracture: Daido Moriyama presents a range of the artist’s renowned black-and-white photographs, exemplifying the radical aesthetic of are, bure, boke (grainy, blurry, out-of-focus), as well as the debut of recent color work taken in Tokyo. A selection of his photo books—Moriyama has published more than forty to date—highlights the artist’s highly influential experimentation with reproduction media and the transformative possibilities of the printed page.  In total, Moriyama’s achievements convey the artist’s boldly intuitive exploration of urban mystery, memory, and photographic invention.
Born in Ikeda, Osaka, Daido Moriyama first trained in graphic design before taking up photography with Takeji Iwaniya, a professional photographer of architecture and crafts. Moving to Tokyo in 1961, he assisted photographer Eikoh Hosoe for three years and became familiar with the trenchant social critiques produced by photographer Shomei Tomatsu. He also drew inspiration from William Klein’s confrontational photographs of New York, Andy Warhol’s silkscreened multiples of newspaper images, and the writings of Jack Kerouac and Yukio Mishima.

Beauty parlor, Tokyo, c1975
Tokyo, 1981
Kagero (Mayfly) 1972
 Fracture: Daido Moriyama
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art
April 7, 2012 - July 31, 2012

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Robert Doisneau, 1912 - 2012, would have turned 100 today

Robert Doisneau, one of France's most popular and prolific photographers, was born in Gentilly, Val-de-Marne, Paris on the 14th April 1912. He died on 1st April 1994 at Montrouge, Paris, aged 81. Doisneau is known for his modest, playful images, mingling social classes, and eccentrics in contemporary Paris streets and cafes. Influenced by the work of Kertesz, Atget, and Cartier-Bresson, in over 20 books Doisneau has presented a charming vision of human frailty and life as a series of quiet, incongruous moments. He wrote: "The marvels of daily life are exciting; no movie director can arrange the unexpected that you find in the street."

Le baiser de l'hôtel de ville, 1950

In 1950 he created his most recognizable work for Life - Le baiser de l'hôtel de ville (Kiss by the Hôtel de Ville), a photo of a couple kissing in the busy streets of Paris, which became an internationally recognised symbol of young love in Paris. The identity of the couple remained a mystery until 1992.

Jean and Denise Lavergne erroneously believed themselves to be the couple in The Kiss, and when Doisneau met them for lunch in the 1980s he "did not want to shatter their dream" so he said nothing. This resulted in them taking him to court for "taking their picture without their knowledge", because under French law an individual owns the rights to their own likeness. The court action forced Doisneau to reveal that he posed the shot using Françoise Delbart and Jacques Carteaud, lovers whom he had just seen kissing but had not initially photographed because of his natural reserve, but he approached them and asked if they would repeat le baiser. He won the court case against the Lavergnes.

The couple in Le baiser were Françoise Delbart, and Jacques Carteaud, 23, both aspiring actors. In 2005 Françoise Bornet (née Delbart) stated that "He told us we were charming, and asked if we could kiss again for the camera. We didn't mind. We were used to kissing. We were doing it all the time then, it was delicious. Monsieur Doisneau was adorable, very low key, very relaxed." They posed at the Place de la Concorde, the Rue de Rivoli and finally the Hôtel de Ville. The photograph was published in the 12 June 1950, issue of Life. The relationship between Delbart and Carteaud only lasted for nine months. Delbart continued her acting career, but Carteaud gave up acting to become a wine producer.

Les Tueurs Melomanes (The Accordionist) 1953
Tableau de Wagner dans la vitrine de la galerie Romi, rue de Seine, 1948

Friday, April 13, 2012


AGAINST FORGETTING  is my autobiographical photo series that I produced in 2010 after revisiting Mount Roskill the Auckland suburb of my childhood. The photobook I made at the time to support this work has long been out of print. I have now produced a second edition, limited to 50 copies, to coincide with a show of the series here in Auckland at the Corban Estate Arts Centre.

The photobook is a 32 page work with 26 photographs in an edition of 50 signed and numbered copies.

I will include a signed and numbered pigment print, of The Snowman image, from an edition of 20, 153 x 115 mm,  with the first 20 copies of  AGAINST FORGETTING sold. 

The Snowman, limited edition print of 20 copies
AGAINST FORGETTING  can be obtained directly from me at:
Prices are, €24 / £20 / US$30 / NZ$36, which include packing and postage. For payment you can simply log on to my PayPal account using my email address above.

Here are some spreads from the book:

While re-looking at my AGAINST FORGETTING work I came across this piece on memory from the American writer Joyce Carol Oates. I really like it.

Memory is our domestic form of time travel.  The invention of photography--in particular, the 'snapshot'--revolutionized human consciousness, for when we claim to "remember" our pasts, we are surely remembering our favorite snapshots, in which the long-faded past is given a distinct visual immortality.  Just as art provides answers long before we understand the questions, so, too, our relationship with our distant past, in particular our relationship with our parents, is a phenomenon we come to realize only by degrees, as we too age, across the mysterious abyss of time.