phot(o)lia

everything about photography in New York, photobooks and the photographer I love

What is a Photograph?

Exhibition: What is a Photograph?
Location: ICP Museum (1133 Avenue of the Americas)
Dates: 31 January - 4 May 2014
Media preview: 30 January 2014

A World of Its Own.

Exhibition: A World of Its Own: Photographic Practices in the Studio (includes approximately 180 works, by approximately 90 artists)
Location: MoMA (11 W 53rd St, New York)
Dates: 8 February – 5 October 2014

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Man Ray. Laboratory of the Future. 1935.

A new photobook project!

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We are working with MAPP Editions on a digital version of 10x10 American Photobooks. Great/fun Sunday filming with Ken Schles and hanging out with my 10x10 team.

Alex Prager.

Exhibition: Alex Prager, Face in the Crowd
Location: Lehmann Maupin (201 Chrystie Str. & 540 West 26th Str.)
Dates: 9 January – 22 February 2014
Opening: Thursday, 9 January 2014, 6 to 8 
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Boris Mikhailov.

Exhibition: Boris MikhailovFour Decades
Location: Dominique Lévy Gallery (909 Madison Avenue, NY)
Dates: 23 November 2013 - 8 February 2014

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Robert Capa.

Exhibition: Capa in Color
Location: ICP Museum (1133 Avenue of the Americas)
Dates: 31 January - 4 May 2014
Media preview: 30 January 2014
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Swell. Mateusz Sarello.

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Swell. Mateusz Sarello.

Photographs by Mateusz Sarello
Text by Kuba Rubaj and Mateusz Sarello
Curation and photo edition by Michal Luczak 
Designed by Ania Nalecka / Tapir Book Design 

Published by Instytut Kultury Wizualnej, Warsaw 2013. Edition of 350 copies.

[Purchase: Mateusz Sarello]

Mateusz’s poetic project about the Baltic Sea took an unexpected turn when his girlfriend broke up with him. This rupture is reinforced by a physical separation in the book design, which also marks a transition from more joyful color images to dark, melancholic and grainy photographs of the Baltic Sea. A beautifully produced book, which mirrors the photographer’s loneliness, memories and search.

More:
Video
Swell, by Mateusz Sarello, the story of a failure!
Mateusz Sarello – Swell
Joanna Kinowska on Mateusz Sarello’s Swell

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Best Books 2013: 10x10 Photobooks.

10x10 Photobooks selection for photo-eye:
Matthew Carson, Russet Lederman and Olga Yatskevich

Three people collaboratively selecting ten photobooks for a “best of 2013” list. Not an easy task.  It requires a lot of discussion to see where there is overlap and where there is not. It can make for a bit of dysfunction. We started to notice that not just the process, but also many of the books on our list dealt with dysfunction in one way or another. A dysfunction that incites a discussion – much like our 10x10 practice. Here is our admittedly dysfunctional list for the best photobooks of 2013.

Shanxi
Zhang Xiao
Little Big Man, 2013.

Haunting and surreal images taken during a traditional Lunar Year celebration in China. Zhang Xiao observes the transformation of villages in the Shanxi region as people put on costumes of mythical creatures, apply bright colors and escape daily routine. In these images that blur the lines between reality and dreams, everything turns into a wonderland.

Foreclosures
Bruce Gilden
Browns Editions, 2013.

Overgrown lots with abandoned homes plastered with “For Rent” or “For Sale” signs are the residual of the subprime mortgage crisis, which began in 2008. In stark black and white images devoid of people, Bruce Gilden’s Foreclosures documents depressed communities in Fort Myers, FL; Detroit, MI and Fresno, CA ravaged by this recent American economic crisis. An extremely powerful book that harnesses a deceptively quiet design to deliver its message.

Rasen Kaigan
Lieko Shiga
Akaaka, 2013.

This color saturated collection of otherworldly images documents the landscape and people of Kitakama, a village in Japan’s Miyagi Prefecture, which was devastated by the 11 March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. In dark images punctuated by streaks of intense color and light, Rasen Kaigen captures the town’s inhabitants in their daily rituals before and after the tsunami. Far from straight documentation, Shiga’s photographs convey the soul of a village as she makes the familiar at once recognizable and alien.

be happy!
Igor Samolet
Peperoni books, 2013.

From Russia with love comes Igor Samulet’s first book, which documents a group of Russian youngsters embarking on their damaged pursuit of happiness. be happy! is a chronicle of desperation for these Russian youths in a world that for them is spinning completely out of control. Image after image shows the mantra like repetition of their impetuous and increasingly hazardous behaviors. Not much hope. Beautifully made.

_08:08 Operating Theatre
Pino Musi
Self-published, 2013.

_08:08 Operating Theatre by Pino Musi is a simple conceptual project of seven beautifully and precisely executed large format images balanced by sublime book design with quotes from the poet and playwright Antonin Artaud. Before us is an intimate theatrical performance where the protagonists have only recently exited the stage (left) and we are left as the disturbed witnesses waiting for the new actors to arrive.  In this state of heightened reality, we are compelled to quickly try and take in all the details.

Vanishing Existence
Kosuke Okahara
BACKYARD Projects, 2013.

Vanishing Existence tells the story of people who live in forgotten ex-leprosy colonies in remote parts of China. Black and white images underscore an atmosphere of exclusion, desolation and fear. The book’s design and materials are carefully selected to reflect the disease’s long history and the despair of affected individuals.

Swell
Mateusz Sarello
Instytut Kultury Wizualnej, 2013.

Mateusz’s poetic project about the Baltic Sea took an unexpected turn when his girlfriend broke up with him. This rupture is reinforced by a physical separation in the book design, which also marks a transition from more joyful color images to dark, melancholic and grainy photographs of the Baltic Sea. A beautifully produced book, which mirrors the photographer’s loneliness, memories and search.

Terribly Awesome Photo Books
Paul Kooiker and Erik Kessels
Art Paper Editions, 2013.

Created beautifully in the democratic form of newsprint comes a selection of eccentric photobook choices that pokes fun at photobook elitism and snobbery and then simultaneously transforms some of that terrible into the most profoundly awesome. What is particularly inspiring is that this publication was inspired by actual dysfunctional real world photobook meet ups.

Macquenoise
Pierre Liebaert
Le caillou bleu, 2013.

A curious story of a dysfunctional family whose simple and uneventful life in the Belgian village of Macquenoise stands in sharp contrast to our technological society. Through both its content and inventive use of newsprint within a gatefold design, we are reminded of the beauty in simple things.

Veins
Anders Peteresen and Jacob Aue Sobel
Dewi Lewis Publishing, 2013.

This is classic Petersen and classic Sobol. Two great Nordic poets working in tandem together. Never have two photographers so closely echoed one another.  This is a truly amazing collaboration of two extreme and extremely talented artists. Both descend into their rugged and authentic worlds and the viewer is presented with something akin to immersive theater. Sobel and Petersen rapidly get under the skin of their environments and gain their sustenance straight from the veins of their subject’s.

 

Matthew Carson is a librarian and archivist at the International Center of Photography in New York. He is a member of the SAA (Society of American Archivists), ARLIS (Art Libraries Society of North America) and the Contemporary Artists Books Conference (CABC) committee at the NY Art Book Fair. He is also one of the founders of the 10×10 photobook group. In 2013 he co-curated the book component of the ICP Triennial “A Different Kind Of Order”. As a photography enthusiast and bibliomaniac he is the editor and writer for the ICP library blog.

Russet Lederman is a media artist, researcher and photobook collector who lives in New York City. She is a co-founder of the 10x10 Photobooks project and teaches media art theory and writing in the MFA Art Criticism & Writing program and MFA Computer Art department at the School of Visual Arts, New York. She regularly writes on photobooks for print publications and the International Center of Photography Library blog.

Olga Yatskevich is a New York-based photobook collector. She is the founder of the Facebook Photobook Group, a forum for discussion on various aspects of photobook culture. She organizes photobook meet-ups in NYC and writes the phot(o)lia blog, which featuring titles from her growing collection. She is a co-founder of the 10x10 Photobooks project.

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Transito. Andres Medina.

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Transito. Andrés Medina.

Photographs by Andrés Medina

Self-published, 2013. Third edition, 75 copies, numbered and signed.  

[Purchase: Andres Medina]

More:
Video
Urbanautica (by Steve Bisson)
Transito, by Andrés Medina, a visual poem. (by Christer Ek)

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Yutaka Takanashi. Yutaka Takanashi.

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Yutaka Takanashi. Yutaka Takanashi.

Photographs by Yutaka Takanashi
Text by Ferdinand Bruggemann (French & English) 
Design by Olivier Andreotti (Toluca Editions) 

Published by Éditorial RM and Toluca Éditions, Mexico City and Paris, 2012. 

[Purchase: Editorial RM, Vincent Borrelli]

Published to accompany Takanashi’s exhibition at the Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson, Paris, this book represents his three major bodies of work: Toshi-e (Towards the City), Machi (City) and Golden-gai Bars

More:
5B4: Yutaka Takanashi: Photography 1965-1974
 

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