Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Paris Photo - participating galleries for 2014 edition

Paris Photo, the premier international art fair for works in the photographic medium, is pleased to announce its preliminary list of participating galleries for Paris Photo 2014 to be held at the Grand Palais. The 18th edition runs from November 13 through 16.

31 new galleries
AFA Santiago / Andrea Meislin New York  / Artef Zurich / Athr Jeddah / Beyond Taipei / Bob Van Orsouw Zurich / Bryce Wolkowitz New York / carlier | gebauer Berlin / Daniel Templon Paris / Dix9 - Helene Lacharmoise Paris / Document Art Buenos Aires / Eva Meyer Paris / Farideh Cadot Paris / Henrique Faria New York / Imane Farès Paris / Jackson Atlanta / Kalfayan Athens / Little Big Man Los Angeles / Nusser & Baumgart Munich / Paci Brescia / Peter Freeman Paris / Richard Saltoun London / Scheublein + Bak Zurich / Selma Feriani Tunis / Silk Road Tehran / Stills Sydney / Thaddaeus Ropac Paris / Three Shadows +3 Beijing / Tolarno Melbourne / Yoshii New York / Zilberman Istanbul

105 returning galleries
+R Maserre Barcelona / 303 Gallery New York / Alain Gutharc Paris / Asymetria Warsaw / Ben Brown London / Bendana|Pinel Paris / Benrubi New York / Bernheimer Munich / Bertrand Grimont Paris / Bruce Silverstein New York / Camera Obscura Paris / Camera Work Berlin / Carlos Carvalho Lisbon / Christophe Gaillard Paris / Daniel Blau Munich / Danziger New York / David Zwirner New York / Dominique Fiat Paris / Du Jour Agnès B. Paris / East Wing Doha / Edwynn Houk New York / Eric Dupont Paris / Eric Franck London / Esther Woerdehoff Paris / Feldbuschwiesner Berlin / Feroz Bonn / Fifty One Antwerp / Filomena Soares Lisbon / Flatland Amsterdam / Fraenkel San Francisco  / Françoise Paviot Paris / Frank Elbaz Paris / Gagosian Paris / Gilles Peyroulet Paris / Gitterman New York / Glaz Moscow / Grafika La Estampa Mexico / Greve Paris / Guido Costa Projects Turin / Hackelbury London / Hamiltons London / Hans P. Kraus Jr. New York / Howard Greenberg New York / Ilan Engel Paris / In Camera Paris / James Hyman London / Johannes Faber Vienna / Jörg Maass Berlin / Klaus Kleinschmidt Wiesbaden / Klemm's Berlin / Laurence Miller New York / Le Réverbère Lyon / Les Filles Du Calvaire Paris / Luisotti Santa Monica / Lumière Des Roses Paris / M Bochum Bochum / M+B Los Angeles / Magda Danysz Paris / Magnin-A Paris / Magnum Paris / Martin Asbæk Copenhagen / Melanierio Nantes / Mem Tokyo / Michael Hoppen London / Michèle Chomette Paris / Nathalie Obadia Paris / Obsis Paris / Odile Ouizeman Paris / Pace/MacGill New York / Paris-Beijing Paris / Parrotta Stuttgart / Particuliere/Foucher-Biousse Paris / Peter Lav Copenhagen / Photo&Contemporary Turin / Polaris Paris / Polka Paris / Priska Pasquer Cologne / Purdy Hicks London / Robert Hershkowitz Lindfield / Robert Klein Boston / Robert Koch San Francisco / Robert Mann New York / Robert Morat Hamburg / Rolf Art Buenos Aires / Rosegallery Santa Monica / RX Paris / Sage Paris Paris / Silverlens Makati / Stephen Bulger Toronto / Stephen Daiter Chicago / Stevenson Cape Town / Susanne Zander Cologne / Suzanne Tarasieve Paris / Taik Persons Helsinki / Taka Ishii Tokyo / Tasveer Bangalore / The Third Gallery Aya Osaka / Thessa Herold Paris / Thomas Zander Cologne / Toluca Paris / Vintage Budapest / Vu' Paris / Xippas Paris / Yancey Richardson New York / Yossi Milo New York

Participating publishers and art book dealers will be announced mid-July.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

John Gossage - Who Do You Love

Who Do You Love presents a tightly curated group of unique, never-before-seen pieces - photographic distractions, in the words of the artist - from the 1990s, culled from hundreds made over the course of that decade. Using simple materials, they push at the edge between collage and straight photography, not sitting squarely in either space. A traditional photographic image takes you “elsewhere” and “previously”; the photographic frame acts as a threshold to another place and time. By presenting each image unobscurred but in tandem with collage-like elements and handmade marks, Gossage breaks the basic photographic illusion and directs one’s attention back to the surface of the work - to the present - with a rare sophistication. These twelve works survey a decade-long artistic practice that occurred concurrently with a straight photographic discipline.

The publication includes a conversation between the artist and Darius Himes. John Gossage (b. 1946) was born in New York and is based in Washington D. C. His first monograph, The Pond (1985), was recently reissued; other notable titles include Stadt Des Schwarz (1987); There and Gone (1997); Snake Eyes (2002); Berlin in the Time of the Wall (2004); and The Thirty-Two Inch Ruler/Map of Babylon (2010). His work is in the permanent collections of The Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Sprengel Museum, Hannover, among others. A major exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago is planned for early 2015.

Edition of 500 Perfect bound with affixed boards, 12 color reproductions, 32pp. Fraenkel Gallery, July, 2014 Trade Edition: $40

Get this book. John Gossage never puts a foot, a photograph or a photobook wrong. You can get a copy of Who Do You Love direct from the Fraenkel Gallery HERE.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

ONE DAY - a reprise

On June 21st 2010 ten photographers - Jessica Backhaus - Berlin, Gerry Badger - London, Harvey Benge - Auckland, John Gossage - Baltimore MD, Todd Hido - Oakland CA, Rob Hornstra - Utrecht, Rinko Kawauchi - Tokyo, Eva Maria Ocherbauer - Berlin, Martin Parr - Bristol UK, Alec Soth - Saint Paul MN - set out on that solstice day to make a book in a day.
Yesterday, our winter solstice, I reprised the event and made some pictures. Here are four images that I thought could possibly be worth a second look.

Friday, June 20, 2014

John Claridge and Chet Baker

John Claridge - Chet Baker
When I worked in London more years ago than I care to remember, John Claridge was one of the hot fashion shooters. I liked his work then and like it today.

The Galerie Adrian Bondy in Paris is currently exhibiting two personal series by John Claridge. One Hundred Photographs, a selection of images taken from his One Hundred Photographs series (1988) which were shot during Claridge’s world travels. Among other things this work features jazz musicians, native Americans, slate mines, prisons and still lifes. East London, spans a period from 1959 to 1986, many images made when Claridge was 15 and living in a poor East London neighborhood.

Galerie Adrian Bondy, 221 rue St. Jacques, 75005, Paris. Show ends 5 July 2014

You can see more of John Claridge's work on his website HERE.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Paul Graham - Does Yellow Run Forever?


Paul Graham has a new bookwork, Does Yellow Run Forever? - due for publication this month by MACK. The book comprises a series of photographs touching upon the ephemeral question of what we seek and value in life – love, wealth, beauty, clear-eyed reality or an inner dream world?
The work weaves in and out of three groups of images: photographs of rainbows from Western Ireland, a sleeping dreamer, and gold stores in the United States. The imagery weaves us in and out of reality, dream and illusion, between fact and spectral phenomena, each entwined one within the other.
Does Yellow Run Forever? refuses to reduce the world to a knowable schema, but instead embraces the puzzle - that there are no singular meanings, direct answers, or gold waiting at the end of the rainbow. Yet, there are startling visions in the everyday, be they ‘beautiful’ or ‘ugly’, that there are dreams worth dreaming, magical scenes to be seen, and true moments of wonder to be found as we shiver the mirror of life.

96 pages / 31 colour plates / 13.5 cm x 19 cm / embossed hardcover /  €35.00 £30.00 50.00

 You can order from MACK - Here.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Irony is ruining our culture...

Here are some extracts from a piece written by Matt Ashby and Brendan Carrol from the online arts and culture magazine SALON. There are a couple of paragraphs that resonated for me.

David Foster Wallace long ago warned about the cultural snark that now defines popular culture. It's time to listen.

Early postmodernists such as Robert Rauschenberg broke the modernist structure of medium-specificity by combining painting and sculpture. The sheer level of his innovation made the work hopeful. However, renegade accomplishments like Rauschenberg’s gave way to an attitude of anything-goes pluralism. No rules governed the distinction of good and bad. Rather than opening doors, pluralism sanctioned all manner of vapid creation and the acceptance of commercial design as art. Jeff Koons could be seen as a hero in this environment. Artists became disillusioned, and by the end of the 1980s, so much work, both good and bad, had been considered art that nothing new seemed possible and authenticity appeared hopeless. In the same period, a generation of academics came of age and made it their mission to justify pluralism with a critical theory of relativism. Currently, the aging stewards of pluralism and relativism have influenced a new population of painters, leaving them confused by the ambitions of Rauschenberg. Today’s painters understand the challenging work of the early postmodernists only as a hip aesthetic. They cannibalize the past only to spit up mad-cow renderings of “art for no sake,” “art for any sake,”  “art for my sake” and “art for money.” So much art makes fun of sincerity, merely referring to rebellion without being rebellious. The paintings of Sarah Morris, Sue Williams, Dan Colen, Fiona Rae, Barry McGee and Richard Phillips fit all too comfortably inside an Urban Outfitters. Their paintings disguise banality with fashionable postmodern aesthetic and irony.

But David Foster Wallace predicted a hopeful turn. He could see a new wave of artistic rebels who “might well emerge as some weird bunch of anti-rebels… who dare somehow to back away from ironic watching, who have the childish gall actually to endorse and instantiate single-entendre principles… Who eschew self-consciousness and hip fatigue.” Yet Wallace was tentative and self-conscious in describing these rebels of sincerity. He suspected they would be called out as “backward, quaint, naïve, anachronistic.” He didn’t know if their mission would succeed, but he knew real rebels risked disapproval. As far as he could tell, the next wave of great artists would dare to cut against the prevailing tone of cynicism and irony, risking “sentimentality,” “ovecredulity” and “softness.”

Wallace called for art that redeems rather than simply ridicules, but he didn’t look widely enough. Mostly, he fixed his gaze within a limited tradition of white, male novelists. Indeed, no matter how cynical and nihilistic the times, we have always had artists who make work that invokes meaning, hope and mystery. But they might not have been the heirs to Thomas Pynchon or Don Delillo. So, to be more nuanced about what’s at stake: In the present moment, where does art rise above ironic ridicule and aspire to greatness, in terms of challenging convention and elevating the human spirit? Where does art build on the best of human creation and also open possibilities for the future? What does inspired art-making look like?

You can read the full SALON article HERE.

David Foster Wallace (February 21, 1962 – September 12, 2008) was an American novelist, short story writer, essayist, and professor of English and creative writing. Wallace is widely known for his 1996 novel Infinite Jest, which was cited by Time magazine as one of the 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to 2005.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Collier Schorr - 8 Women

photo-eye asked me to select and review a Book of the Week. I chose Collier Schorr's puzzling new bookwork 8 Women. Here is what I wrote...

In her new bookwork 8 Women, Collier Schorr has abandoned the German countryside and has moved inside the studio. What’s not been lost is the fundamental landscape of desire that continues to permeate her work, where the reader inevitably questions the nature of the relationship between Schorr and her subjects. These profoundly enigmatic photographs deal with identity, power and issues of gender and sit on the edge of knowing and not knowing. Unsettlingly, the work picks at the scabs of our own past relationships. This is a loaded and layered series that leaves the reader never quite knowing what is going on and what they are looking at. Richard Prince says that this is Schorr’s best bookwork, I think he may well be right.

You can buy the book from photo-eye HERE.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Melbourne and Sydney in May - 28 photographs

While in Melbourne and Sydney at the end May there was time to wander, explore and make photographs. The result, a 28 page photobook similar in format to my Paris series.

The edition is limited to 50 copies, each book signed and numbered. There are 28 photographs, over 28 pages, printed on 150gsm art paper, 226 x 160 mm. Below are some of the pages.

Copies can be obtained directly from me at:
Prices are, €23 / £18 / US$30 / A$33 / NZ$36, which include packing and postage. For payment you can simply log on to my PayPal account using my email address above.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

The Photobook - Yin and Yang

MOCA Sydney - Sunday May 25
The Sunday before last I took part in a panel discussion at Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art where a panel consisting of publishers, photography educators and photographers attempted to prise open the photobook oyster to see if we could come up with any pearls of wisdom. The subject was tossed back and forth before a receptive audience and in an hour and a half not many substantive conclusions were reached.

As a committed maker of photobooks I’ve been thinking a lot about the photobook and the problems and opportunities of book making and distribution. Since I made my first photobook twenty years ago much has changed. On one hand it’s become hugely easier to actually get a book produced. With InDesign, working from PDF’s in a computer to plate environment, sheet-fed offset books are simpler to produce. Make-ready press times are shorter, plate turn around on the presses are faster and printers can now cost effectively print smaller runs, down to even 500 units. Possibly less. On top of this there is digital printing with state of the art printers from both Fuji Xerox and HP. And soon in this arena sheet sizes larger than A3. All this has meant a flood of photobooks. In effect the haystack has got bigger but the needle much smaller. What I’m saying is that amongst the flood of books, some books are not very good and it’s harder to get ones hands on the really outstanding stuff. Somebody commented at the panel discussion, “how many times have you gone into a photobook store and come out with nothing”. Right!

Once you’ve got your book in your hand the killer is distribution. Today, there are many more books seeking shelf-space with less shelf-space to go round. High Street art bookshops have closed and those that keep going have become more selective in what they stock. And for example the wonderful Flammarion bookshop in Centre Pompidou, Paris, seems to have a policy of just one stock-turn for most books. In other words they will order a book, display it, sell it but not restock. Then there is Amazon and Book Depository with their huge market share which enable them to dictate terms to publishers. Book resellers demand hefty discounts and more often than not publishers pay the freight costs of unsold returned books. I am still convinced that the photobook is the best vehicle for photography. The book makes a series of pictures into a work in itself. There is a wonderful tactile, format, scale thing that works with photographs in book form which adds to the experience of viewing the work. And unlike a short lived gallery show a book has long life, it can travel and becomes the photographers ultimate calling card.

As for acquiring photobooks, in my view you can’t go wrong it you buy and collect every new book from those photographers you admire with a history of making books where often one book can inform the next. For example I get hold of, sight unseen, every book from luminaries such as Robert Adams, Paul Graham, John Gossage, Wolfgang Tillmans and Collier Schorr, to name a few. I do this because I follow their work and know their books will be good. And I look for books from new voices such as Sacha Maric, Lucas Blalock and others.

Despite the changes of the last few years there is still life in photobook. Long live the photobook!

Harvey Benge - Can I leave the room?

Friday, June 6, 2014

Xavier Ribas at The Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona

Xavier Ribas - A History of Detonations, 2013

BARCELONA.- The Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona presents the first solo exhibition by Xavier Ribas (Barcelona, 1960) that brings together a substantial body of work made by the photographer over the last decade. The exhibition takes its title from his latest investigative project into the extraction of sodium nitrate. The system of colonial exploitation led by British companies in the Chilean Atacama Desert is a case study whose geographical and historical scope is held to question by Ribas’s photographic practice. This ambitious study, produced between 2009 and 2014, is presented here for the first time along with a selection of his earlier works. The first part of the exhibition – which prefaces the section dedicated specifically to Nitrate – includes four photographs from the Sanctuary series (2002) and eight series from the most extensive group of works in the artist’s career, Concrete Geographies (2002–9). In the mid-1990s Xavier Ribas first became known with his project Sundays , 1994–97, an investigation of the outskirts of Barcelona. With this series, which initiated his anthropological perspective and earned him immediate recognition, he began his research on the relationship between the urban and the everyday. The projects collected under the title Sanctuary (1998–2002) continue the exploration of urban peripheries with works in which the author addresses the interstitial spaces of the city.

You can read the full text to this piece on artdaily HERE and more on the Ribas website HERE.

Xavier Ribas - Desert Trails, 2012 (detail)

Thursday, June 5, 2014

LODZ - 13th International Festival of Photography

Continuing a Polish note, the 13th International Festival of Photography opens in Lodz tonight. Wish I could be there. Check out the program on the festival's site HERE.

Clare Strand - Further Reading

Clare Strand is a British camera artist whose work I have long admired. Strand is a risk taker and is not content to simply investigate the obvious. Here work transcends boundaries and takes photography to new and exciting places. Currently she has a show called Further Reading, at the National Museum in Krakow as part of the Krakow Photomonth.

Throughout Clare Strand’s photographic career, her projects have been underpinned by the act of “research.” Strand began collecting vernacular and functional imagery at a young age, and has, over the course of two decades, amassed her own personal archive of utilitarian imagery, describing her method as “like wearing a magnetic suit and seeing what it attracts, or rolling in the grass and seeing what you pick up on your jumper.  

The "Further Reading" exhibition showcases a cross-section of  Clare Strand's output, a British artist working in photography, video and installation. Many of Strand’s projects are inspired by photos made for functional usages – in criminal cases, instruction manuals or parascientific visual materials created by Spiritists. These provide her with a starting point for her individual, humorous aesthetic quests. By playing with conventions, Strand also constantly challenges the received wisdom that photography shows the truth.

Clare Strand is a multidisciplinary photographic artist based in Brighton, England. She has exhibited extensively both in England and abroad. Her work is held in major collections such as the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Centre Georges Pompidou. Recent publications include Clare Strand Monograph (Steidl, 2009) and Skirts (GOST Books, 2013). Strand is also half of the ideas-based collaborative team MacDonaldStrand,

If you don't plan to be in Poland anytime soon (exhibition closes August 17) you can see the show and its installation on Clare Strand's tumblr site HERE. Her website is well worth checking out too - HERE.

Kummer & Herrman - photobook design at its best!


Dutch designers Kummer and Herrman, winners of a bunch of European Design Awards have just redesigned their website. Well known for their ongoing collaboration with Rob Hornstra and Arnold van Bruggen's The Sochi Project, and new projects with Martin Parr, Aperture and Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, their inspirational site is well worth a look. You can do so HERE.

Photographers whose work I like - No25/ Daniel Donnelly

Daniel Donnelly is a self taught English photographer who lives in Casablanca. He makes pictures that are mysteriously strange. With a lightness and humor in his looking he deftly transcends the Moroccan vernacular making pictures that could be anywhere, pictures where the details count for a lot.

You can see Daniel's first bookwork - For the Children - here at ANTLER PRESS and go to his website HERE.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

André Príncipe and Marco Martins - TOKYO DIARIES

In 2009 André Príncipe and Marco Martins travelled to Tokyo to shoot a film about elliptical narratives and the importance of the diaristic practise in Japanese photography.
During a month and in a totally improvised way, the Portuguese filmmakers shot hours of 16mm footage and thousands of photographs of their daily life as well as their encounters with photographers such as Nobuyoshi Araki, Daido Moriyama, Takuma Nakahira, Hiromix, Kohei Yushiyuki and Kajii Syoin. Traces of a Diary was shown in film festivals around the world and received the jury prize at Documenta Madrid. Initially, the film was going to be a mixture of still photographs and 16mm material but during editing it was decided that only the moving images were to be used. About one hundred rolls of Tri-X 400 film remained in a box, unused. These photographs are now revisited in Tokyo Diaries, a book that is as much about photo books and the way we read them as it is about Japanese photographers.

TOKYO DIARIES / Softcover, B&W / 24 x 17 cm / 244 pages / Edition of 750 / Price: €28.00
The bookwork will be released in July and is available now at a special pre-sale price of  €22.00
Published by Pierre von Kleist Editions you can order a copy HERE.