maandag 29 september 2008
This piece originally appeared in the December 2005 issue of Grafik magazine.
VOYEUR by Hans-Peter Feldmann
Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Köln1994, 1997
This book is 165 x 110 x 10mm, 256 pages, 198 grams, the paper weight is just right, smaller than your average paperback, perfect bound (doesn’t lay flat), sits in my hand, fits in my pocket and gets lost on a shelf between flabby, super-size photography books. It’s small, modest, friendly and seems to me to be the ideal design icon for our time. It’s a re-sampled, re-issued, re-packaged celebration and confusion of the everyday. Black and white reproductions of photographs taken from photojournalism, stock libraries and art photography are presented to the reader, each page/spread with its own rhythm, one to six or more slightly coarse screened photographs per page ranging in size from 24 x 24mm to 150 x 98mm. This sophisticated scrapbook sits in the category of ‘artist’s book’, though I suspect Feldmann wouldn’t be happy with that distinction. He believes that everyone is an artist. Feldmann has been doing this type of thing for three decades. You see his influence amongst others in magazines like ‘Permanent Food’, the paperback journal produced by Maurizio Cattelan and co.,where every page is appropriated from magazines all over the world. The perfect post-modern product.
Feldmann seems to know ‘the thrill and dread of a world in which “all that is solid melts into air”’(Marshall Berman quoting Marx). Like our lives, the book is full of paradox and contradiction. It reads differently every time (the second edition has the same images as the first but in a different order). We see a complex landscape of stolen images; some violent, others pornographic, both victims and perpetrators are there: newlyweds, porn stars, a kiss, a dressing room, a car crash, a male model, a polar bear, the queen mother, a baby, a fly, a burial, a mousetrap, a lighthouse, a masked man, a seagull, an 80s model, a laughing old couple, a singing lesson, a boxer, Jamie Lee Curtis undressing, chimpanzees hugging, Princess Anne meeting dancers, a plate of sweetcorn, an empty bedroom, a girl stretching, a dog swimming, a full moon, a happy dentist and so on. The combinations and sequences of images can be playful or distressing. Each time you flick through the book you see a new image.
These are images divorced from their original text. Something I wish would happen to the Saturday Guardian, whose lifestyle supplements say nothing to me about my life. Mr public figure Smith goes to see a pop concert and in exchange his son goes to the opera. How thrilling. How middle-class. Who cares? No danger of that with this icon, this book is – as Feldmann might say – “guaranteed free of text”. There’s no guide on how to live and work in the modern world. Here the book agrees with Sontag in On Photography ‘Photographs, which cannot themselves explain anything, are inexhaustible invitations to deduction, speculation, and fantasy.
’What about the cover? It’s not exactly an example of ‘modernist good taste’ (see Phaidon press), but equally I don’t think we’re dealing with the tired, knowing wink of irony, or the vernacular (the ‘low’ rather than the ‘high’). It’s more honest than that. While this book is more than likely bought by the ‘graphically’ sophisticated, there’s no reason this book shouldn’t have a broader appeal. It’s for your mum and dad too.
A bigger question: Is it possible or even desirable to discuss a piece of ‘design’ without mentioning the content? Can you enjoy a dutch poster without knowing what it says? Could I choose a Faucheux designed bookcover as my graphic design icon, without reading French? Can you celebrate the ‘form’ without being interested in the content? You can but I don’t think that’s healthy. To sample and re-issue an idea put by Robin Kinross in Fellow Readers: ‘It is worth trying a brutally simple attitude to design: judge it by its content. This certainly helps to clear the mind – and maybe the shops and museums too.’
zondag 28 september 2008
zaterdag 27 september 2008
Focusing the photobooks : Almost Every Picture, Useful Photography,(Hans-Peter Feldmann) Ansichten von Autoradios in denen gerade gute Musik spielt 1970s-90s, (Christian Boltanski) Kaddish, Bureaucratics, 101 Billionaires, Baghdad Suite, (Jodi Bieber) Schemertijd, (Willem Poelstra) 112 * Ambulance Amsterdam ...
The Buffet is open ... & lees verder ...
See for more ...
& see for an ode to Dutch Graphic Design in the 50s ...
donderdag 25 september 2008
Antwerpen, Uitgeverij Walter Soethoudt, 1972, foto's, gebonden met stofomslag
dinsdag 23 september 2008
LOS ANGELES, Sept. 19, 2008 — Women In Photography International continues its tradition by establishing a list of the Top 100 Distinguished Women Photographers for 2008. Included on the list are photography’s classics, Lillian Bassman, Jodi Cobb, Anne Geddes, Graciela Iturbide, Helen Levitt, Sally Mann and Cindy Sherman.
Starting in 2006, to celebrate WIPI’s 25th Anniversary, Women In Photography International (http://www.womeninphotography.org) began the process of researching and culling the names of working women photographers worldwide for their online resource center. After two years, the finalized list of the top 100 female photographers was completed in August 2008, and serves as the 25th Anniversary Addendum to WIPI’s Distinguished Photographer’s Award, first presented to Eve Arnold in 1981.
Rineke Dijkstra, Sittard / NETHERLANDS http://tinyurl.com/5esh7n
Selecting the top 100 women photographers involved Googling each of the candidates nominated with attention focused on the artist’s body of work, history of exhibition, biographies, portfolios, career longevity, publications, and social impact. The selection acknowledges women starting at the earliest stages of their career to working photographers with twenty-five or more years of history.
Hellen Van Meene, Heiloo / NETHERLANDS http://tinyurl.com/3cxvqb
A variety of resource materials was used to assemble the list, most notably Dr. Naomi Rosenblum’s 1994 groundbreaking volume, “A History of Women Photographers,” and photo historian Peter E. Palmquist’s 2001 list of women photographers, donated to WIPI’s online resource center. The Palmquist Collection of Western American and Women’s Photography is housed at Yale University’s Beinecke Library. Additional support and consultation were provided by photographers, curators, educators, museums, educational foundations, photographic organizations, and gallery owners worldwide.
Women In Photography International’s Top 100 Distinguished Women Photographers list honors the accomplishments of dedicated working women photographers around the globe. Each of the nominees, and the selected finalists, have contributed uniquely to the field of the visual arts. Whether self-taught or formally educated, each of these women were selected for their dedication, artistry, and for creating a body of work that has touched our lives.
zondag 21 september 2008
Rare vintage works by Dutch photographer Sanne Sannes, who perished in a car accident in 1967. Renowned in the early '60s for using photography as a means to create autonomous art, he was known as the 'photographer of tomorrow'.
After almost four decades of obscurity, a unique collection from the oeuvre of the Dutch photographer Sanne Sannes (1937-1967) comes to light again. That this collection of rare vintage work from the Sannes Estate (curator Rob Sannes) shall again be available for an international market is an opportunity for Dutch photography.
About the photographer:Sannes, during his brief photographic career in the sixties, became renown for his taste for the erotic, his fascination with women and approach to seduction. His timeless imagery recalls the atmosphere of the sixties, which acted as an impulse both for his models and for his own super talent in photography.
After his untimely death at the age of 30 in a car accident, with only an eight year photographic career of innovating art, Sannes oeuvre is still on par with internationally acclaimed Dutch photographers such as Gerard Fieret and Ed van der Elsken, who in the sixties defined Dutch black-and-white photography. That Sannes earned his merit in the world of creative photography with his keen and intensely poetic eye regarding women, shall be obvious to contemporary viewers. Sannes explores aspects of sexual passion. Jim Hughes, editor of 'Camera 35', wrote: "Sannes, a controversial Dutch photographer, did not make easy photographs. Certainly, he did not make pretty photographs. I'm not even sure he made photographs. He made explorations of people, of their outsides and their insides, and sent back picture postcards of their psyches."
Sannes work is better known through his publications, one of his best known books being 'Sex a Gogo'. More provocative than most books of nudes in its day, it remains a fantastic period piece even today. It was his second book, published posthumously in 1969. His first book, 'Oog om Oog'(Eye for Eye) a notable work in the Dutch beeldroman (photonovel) tradition, had been published a few years earlier. 'Sex a Gogo' was much more light hearted, a Pop-Art sexual manual, complete with psychedelic collages and cartoon speech balloons. It was heavily influenced by the many underground¹ magazines that were a feature of the 1960s culture/scene. Parr & Badger wrote in The Photobook, A History, Vol. I: "The book's montages were devised by its designer Walter Steevensz, who took over the project when Sannes died, and it is his vision as much as the photographer's that is evidenced in this typically 1960's comedy of sexual mores. Yet however comical, Sex a Gogo never allows us to forget about its erotic intentions.
Sannes described his approach like this: "There are many men who'll never see a woman in ecstasy. They change from one thing to something else completely different. Human emotions are my subject matter. I photograph people. They're what interest me, obsess me. I want to know what pushes them to do what they do. I don't look for them in the street; I don't do random photography. I direct them and record the moment they open up and become naked. I chose the most emotionally charged moments, the point of no return. I'm fanatically zealous!
"Photographer Anna Beeke posed for Sannes and describes him as a "voyeur and provocateur, adding that he was like a boy who'd got old too soon and was never free of the obsessions that preoccupied him"
"Note: FOAM_Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam will organise an exhibition about and with the work of Sanne Sannes in 2009.
PhotoQ’s Multimedia: Wolffensperger over Sannes (4 min 14 sec) & see also the (Dutch) Books of Nudes by Alessandro Bertolotti ... & the movie by Sanne Sannes Dirty Girl ...
Lees verder Achter een beregende ruit; De erotische foto's van Sanne Sannes ... & verder ...
zaterdag 20 september 2008
Martin Parr and Gerry Badger : The Photobook: A History volume 1 / The Indecisive Moment: The 'Stream-of-Consciousness' Photobook
In 1955, the 17-year-old Joan van der Keuken caused a stir in Dutch publishing with his book Wij zijn 17 (We are 17), prefiguring the even greater furore that would greet the publication of Ed van der Elsken's Een Liefdesgeschiedenis in Saint Germain des Pres (Love on the Left Bank) a year later. Van der Keuken's book was as innovative as Van der Elsken's in its treatment of a section of society - not a class exactly, but a societal group - that was beginning to be regarded as a class apart.
It is sometimes forgotten in these days of 'youth culture' that it was only from around the 1950s onwards that the young were first talked about in this way. Previously they had been regarded - give a modicum of wild oats sowing and youthful high spirits - largely as replicas of their parents. In the 1950s, however, with its anxious air of repressed rebellion, such attitudes were overturned. The Beat Generation, the Beatnik movement, James Dean - the original rebel without a cause - and a pouting, gyrating phenomenon called Elvis Presley, drew the world's attention to the fact that, since the war, a new alien seemed to have been dropped on the planet - the teenager.
Van der Keuken's two books, Wij zijn 17 and his followup, Achter Glas (Behind Glass, 1957), caught this mood perfectly. Whilst perhaps not stream-of-consciousness in style, they certainly are in terms of attitude, capturing a moment's experience in which nothing much happens except for the moment itself. The 30 pictures in Wij zijn 17 are tellingly simple. Students lounge around in their rooms, doing nothing very much, as if waiting for their adult lives to begin. The mood is uncertain, capturing that moment when childhood ends and youth must take a deep breath and step out into the world.
This was also the theme of Achter Glas, Van der Keuken's second foray into the new form of the 'photonovel'. Two sisters, Georgette and Yvonne, do little more than sit by a window, day-dreaming. And it was this youthful lassitude, this apparent aimlessness, perfectly expressed by Van der Keuken, that caused a degree of controversy. But this view of teenage rebellion at the sulky rather than more active stage rings painfully true. It became a model for other books examining the same phenomenon, not he least of which is the recent work of Van der Keuken's compatriot, Hellen van Meene, whose similar view od Dutch adolescents - now in colour - has also proved controversial.
See also Johan van der Keuken Paris Mortel Sardegna Portraits... & see also the movies I ♥ $ / I Love Dollar, 1986 (essay) & For the time being ...
donderdag 18 september 2008
Chris Killip Eugene Atget Walker Evans Sophie Ristelhueber Errata Editions Books on Books Series Photography
I have been hinting that I have had an interesting project underway for 2008 and now it is my pleasure to finally let the cat out of the bag. Myself along with two partners have started a publishing company called Errata Editions and I am very excited to announce that the first four releases in our Books on Books series are currently 'on press' in China. I will be doing a week's worth of posts starting the 23rd from the printing facility in Hong Kong describing the entire process of overseeing the books being printed, but first, I am thrilled to tell you about the Books on Books series that will no doubt be of interest to photobook lovers.
The Books on Books series is an on-going publishing project dedicated to making rare and out-of-print photography books accessible once again to photobook enthusiasts. Each in this series presents the entire content, page for page, of an original master bookwork which, up until now, has been too rare or prohibitively expensive for most of us to experience. These are not facsimiles but complete studies of those original masterpieces. Through a mix of classic and contemporary titles, this series will span the breadth of practice as it has appeared on the printed page and allows further study into the creation and meanings of these great works of art.
The first two-thirds of each book in this series will show, page for page, every spread that appeared in the original book. We have done so by re-photographing the original book in its entirety so the viewer can see not only all of the photographs, but the page layout, typography and all aspects that make up the original including all of the written texts. In addition to those illustrations, we have commissioned some of the finest writers on photography to contribute a 3000-4000 word essay about each book discussing not only the photography but the book object itself and its relevance in the history of the medium. Other chapters in the Books on Books series include a short essay on the original book's production along with biographic and bibliographic information of each artist.
The first four titles in the Books on Books series are as follows...
1. Eugene Atget : Photographe de Paris is the perfect starting point for a series on great photography books. Published in 1930, three years after Atget’s death, it is now regarded as a classic that influenced generations of artists including Berenice Abbott and Walker Evans. Books on Books 1 reproduces all 96 collotype plates and an English translation of the fine Pierre Mac Orlan text on Eugène Atget’s remarkable documentation of Paris at the turn of the 19th century. The noted author, David Campany, contributes a contemporary essay called Atget’s Intelligent Documents written for this volume. Hardcover with dustjacket; 9.5 x 7 in; 112 pages; 116 four-color illustrations; Essays by Pierre Mac Orlan, David Campany, Jeffrey Ladd; ISBN 978-935004-00-4; Retail price $39.95.
2. Walker Evans : American Photographs (1938 edition). American Photographs is arguably the most important photobook ever published. Originally conceived to be a catalog to accompany his one-man show at the Museum of Modern Art in 1938, it continues to go out-of-print for long stretches of time. Books on Books 2 presents the original 1938 edition with its 87 legendary black and white photographs that defined Evans' documentary-style aesthetic. This volume also reproduces the great Lincoln Kirstein essay and a contemporary piece written by John T. Hill, the author of many books on Evans including Lyric Documentary (Steidl 2006). Hardcover with dustjacket; 9.5 x 7 in; 112 pages; 113 Duotone and four-color illustrations; Essays by Lincoln Kirstein, John T. Hill, Jeffrey Ladd; ISBN 978-935004-02-8; Retail price $39.95.
3. Sophie Ristelhueber : Fait. In October of 1991, French artist Sophie Ristelhueber photographed the battle-scarred landscape of Kuwait following the end of the first Gulf war with Iraq. The book Fait, which in French means ‘fact’ or ‘what was done,’ remains one of the most powerful statements about the aftermath of war. Books on Books 3 presents all 71 black and white and color photographs as seen in the original artist book as it was conceived and designed by Ristelhueber. Marc Mayer of the Art Contemporain in Montreal contributes an essay that discusses Ristelhueber’s disturbing yet beautiful achievement. Hardcover with dustjacket; 9.5 x 7 in; 96 pages; 95 four-color illustrations; Essays by Marc Mayer, Jeffrey Ladd; ISBN 978-935004-04-2; Retail price $39.95.
4. Chris Killip : In Flagrante. Often referenced as the most important photobook to come from England in the 1980s, Chris Killip’s In Flagrante stands the test of time today. Published in 1988, In Flagrante shows the communities in Northern England that were devastated by the deindustrialization common to policies carried out by Thatcher and her predecessors starting in the mid-1970s. Books on Books 4 presents Killip’s political yet lyric work with a new essay by Gerry Badger called Dispatches from a War Zone. Hardcover with dustjacket; 9.5 x 7 in; 80 pages; 65 Duotone and four-color illustrations; Essays by John Berger & Sylvia Grant, Gerry Badger, Jeffrey Ladd; ISBN 978-935004-06-6; Retail price $39.95.
The quality of this series is first and foremost. Anyone can start publishing books but our necessity is to publish books which celebrate the original material to the fullest potential. This is why we have surrounded ourselves with the best ink-on-paper specialists working in bookmaking today. Robert Hennessey, who has made the separations for many of the most beautiful art and photography books of the last two decades, has prepared the digital files for the illustrations in this series and is guiding me through the process of being "on-press." This series is presented in cloth hardcover with a large bellyband/dustjacket utilizing a clean design and fine materials. The body of our books are printed on a Japanese matte art paper common to many of the finer artbooks being made today. These books are being crafted to look and feel of the highest quality yet remain very affordable and accessible to the widest possible audience.
The Books on Books series was conceived by Jeffrey Ladd in order to fill a void. The void being that the outrageous prices demanded by the collector's market and scarcity of these titles makes them out of reach to most students, teachers, scholars, and photobook enthusiasts. The Books on Books series will be an inexpensive way for everyone to once again be able to access this material which up to now has been effectively removed from view. Most of the titles we are going to feature have appeared in the now classic compendiums on photography books; The Parr/Badger Photobook History, The Open Book, and The 101 Seminal photography Books. Those books, which are fine scholarly additions to the discussion of photobook history, also frustratingly showed us what we were missing out on. With this series, you will finally see inside the books you thought you'd never experience. I have a strong belief that people, especially students, should be able to access these great works of art to learn from them and that a valuable part of the dialogue with this medium has been stunted because of that limited access. This series is our contribution to continuing that dialogue.
DAP/ Distributed Art Publishers is distributing the trade edition of the Errata Editions' Books on Books series. In addition to this trade version, there will be a limited quantity of a special edition offered as a four book set available directly through Errata Editions. These special editions feature a beautiful reproduction of the original book cover tipped into the saifu book cloth of each title. Besides owning a more elegant version of each book, the advantage to ordering the four book set is the assurance that you will receive the special editions of the Books on Books series as soon as they are off the press and months before the regular edition is distributed. For pricing and ordering a set please write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are in the process of lining up many more titles to be featured in this exciting publishing project but its longevity is soon to be in your hands. The proceeds of sales from these first four books goes towards the production of the next four titles in the series so please help us continue revealing the greatest photobooks ever produced to new audiences.
Please spread the word.
woensdag 17 september 2008
Martien Coppens (1908-1986)
Martien Coppens is een van de belangrijkste Nederlandse fotografen van zijn generatie, wiens veelzijdige oeuvre in de Nederlandse geschiedenis van de fotografie volstrekt onderbelicht is gebleven. Het Nederlands Fotomuseum geeft aandacht aan deze fotograaf in een overzichtstentoonstelling.
In Noord-Brabant is hij een grootheid, boven de rivieren is hij vrijwel onbekend. De honderdste geboortedag van Martien Coppens is door het Nederlands Fotomuseum aangegrepen zijn werk te conserveren, digitaliseren en presenteren. De kerncollectie van Coppens, ondergebracht in de Brabant-Collectie van de Universiteit van Tilburg, is een belangrijk bestanddeel van deze tentoonstelling.
Martien Coppens werd vooral bekend door zijn fotoboeken over de koorbanken van Nederland, de kathedraal Sint-Jan te ‘s-Hertogenbosch en verschillende aspecten van de Brabantse cultuur. Op de Latijnse school kocht hij zijn eerste camera en op de HBS verdiepte hij zijn belangstelling voor de fotografie. Na zijn studietijd en een korte stage bij fotozaak Helder in Middelburg opende Coppens in 1932 een portretatelier en fotozaak in Eindhoven.
Zijn vrije werk verscheen vanaf 1937 in ruim zestig, grotendeels zelf geïnitieerde publicaties. Hij ontwikkelde een uitgesproken visie op portretfotografie en legde deze vast in boeken Vanaf het einde van de jaren dertig verschoof zijn aandacht van portretten naar religieuze bouw- en beeldhouwkunst en naar het Brabantse land.
In het honderdste geboortejaar van Martien Coppens verschijnt voor het eerst een uitgebreid biografisch portret van deze belangrijke Nederlandse fotograaf. Dit lijvige boekwerk met honderden foto's, waarvan vele nooit eerder zijn gepubliceerd, belicht Coppens’ leven en werk vanuit fotohistorisch perspectief, maar ook vanuit de cultuur- en mentaliteitsgeschiedenis en de semiotiek . Lees een recensie ...
Kitty de Leeuw, Rik Suermondt, Ellen Tops
Bezielde beelden. Het oeuvre van Martien Coppens (1908-1986) in een biografisch perspectief. ISBN 9789040085567
Uitgave van de Stichting Brabants Fotoarchief