donderdag 6 januari 2011

Dutch Photobooks selected in Photo-Eye's Best Books of 2010 Photography

Morten Andersen Timothy Prus & Ed Jones Alan Rapp Elizabeth Avedon Rinko Kawauchi Ramón Reverté Alexa Becker Hester Keijser Michael Schmelling Bruno Ceschel Anne Kelly George Slade Jörg M. Colberg Loring Knoblauch Alec Soth Marco Delogu Larissa Leclair Peter Sutherland Antone Dolezal Melanie McWhorter Willem van Zoetendaal John Gossage Colin Pantall Laurence Vecten Todd Hido Martin Parr Fabrice Wagner

For nearly two decades photo-eye has been selecting the best photography books of the year. In the past we sat around the table at Director Rixon Reed's home or in our Santa Fe bookstore debating for hours on topics such as each book's historical importance, how a particular title contributes to the expansion of our understanding of an important photographer's oeuvre or the nature and relevance of the book as object. The features or factors making a book the best for one person are not always the same for another. As the years progressed, the list of nominees and the stack of books to review in one evening made the task of narrowing down the list to a few titles almost impossible. In 2008, photo-eye decided to invite some of our favorite contemporary publishers, writers, photographers and photo professionals to assist us in this process. Their opinions reflect the diversity of the medium. This year's list of contributors offers up the aesthetic tastes of 27 contributors from Europe, the US, Japan and Mexico. 

The evolution and shift of interest in the photobook community has come to rest heavily on self-published and indie books. These titles have shot a breath of fresh air into not only the photobook world, but into the art community as a whole. Self-published titles such as Rob Hornstra & Arnold van Bruggen's Empty Land and Maxwell Anderson's See You Soon make it onto several of our contributor's lists and showcase the diversity and creativity that self-published and indie titles have brought to the table. Several of our contributors are leading voices in this exploding new photobook world. Self-Publish, Be Happy's Bruno Ceschel, Indie Photobook Library's Larissa Leclair and curator of Publish It Yourself Laurence Vecten were included this year as representatives of this phenomenal movement. Even well-established photographers such as Alec Soth and Martin Parr give their nod to the self-publishing industry. We are honored to have such a diverse list of contributors reflecting this shift in aesthetic trend. 

view all selected books

Quatorze Juillet. 
Photographs by Johan van der Keuken.
Van Zoetendaal Gallery.

Bastille Day, Paris, 1958; a wind-blown couple dances in the street on the Quai de Bourbon, isolated and oblivious to the derelict buildings beside them. This well-known image by documentary filmmaker and photographer Van der Keuken was first published in 1964; the discovery of 32 negatives from the same shoot informs this book and exhibition at Amsterdam's FOAM. Groups of girls socialise; other couples dance and drift off; children laugh; chance passers-by take centre stage. As the image's context is revealed in dynamic sequence, Van der Keuken's perception, processes and choices are uncovered, evincing the cinematic qualities and capturing of motion that concerned him throughout his later career.

Selected by:

The Kaddu Wasswa Archive. 
A Visual Biography. 
Edited by Andrea Stultiens, Arthur C. Kisitu and Kaddu Wasswa.
Post Editions.

The Kaddu Wasswa Archive by photographer Andrea Stultiens is the visual biography of Ugandan Kaddu Wasswa, born in 1933, who played a an important role in his community as a teacher and social worker. What is exceptional about the now 77-year old Wasswa is that he has always documented his activities. He wrote novels, plays and essays, took photographs and collected photos. Additionally, his extensive archive contains letters and newspaper clippings, often with added commentary.

Andrea Stultiens met Kaddu Wasswa in 2008 through his grandson, photographer Arthur C. Kisitu. Together, Stultiens and Kisitu set out to explore Wasswa's archive. She took photographs of the documents to which she added her and Kisitu's own photos which were taken during their meetings. The result is a unique biography in which the author is personally visible as well.

Kaddu Wasswa started his archive in the period when Uganda was seeking independence from Great Britain, its coloniser. The many photos in the archive present a fascinating view of the country Uganda and its inhabitants during the first fifty years of independence, which will be commemorated in 2012. The Kaddu Wasswa Archive preserves the history of a man and tells the story of a country.

The book The Kaddu Wasswa Archive will be launched on October 30th at the exhibition with the same name in the Nederlands Fotomuseum in Rotterdam.

Selected by:

Photographs by Viviane Sassen.

Flamboya includes photographs taken across Africa—from Cape Town to Kenya to Zambia—that disregard traditional boundaries of genres and tackle the problematic bond between photography, imperialism, and the colonial imagination. Viviane Sassen’s aesthetic vocabulary suggestively recalls documentary as much as staged photography and relies on a visual economy that invites the formulation of multiple interpretations. Seen through Sassen’s lens, the ethnic Other interrogates the traditional nexus laid between vision, knowledge, and power, which lies at the heart of the history and ideology of photography.

Read Shane Lavalette's review of Flamboya in photo-eye Magazine.

Photographs by Rob Hornstra & Arnold van Bruggen.
The Sochi Project.

In Empty Land, Promised Land, Forbidden Land photographer Rob Hornstra and writer Arnold van Bruggen explore the unknown country Abkhazia on the Black Sea. Abkhazia broke away from Georgia after a short, violent civil war in '92-'93 and was recognised as independent in 2008 by Russia, Venezuela, Nicaragua and the atoll of Nauru. Hornstra and Van Bruggen spent the last four years travelling through the country, seeing how it is slowly trying to claw its way out of isolation. They visited the refugees in Georgia and described the attempts made by the Abkhazian government to repopulate the empty, war-ravaged country with new immigrants. 

Abkhazia was once the holiday paradise of the Soviet Union’s elite. During the war of independence many hotels and sanatoria were shot to pieces. The country is empty – more than half of the pre-1992 inhabitants have fled – and impoverished. But an increasing number of Russian investors and tourists are discovering the country. After signing cooperation treaties, Russia took over Abkhazia’s border patrol. In the meantime, Abkhazia is trying to convince Turks of Caucasian descent to emigrate to Abkhazia. 

In Empty Land, Promised Land, Forbidden Land, Hornstra and Van Bruggen sketch a picture of Abkhazia from the perspective of many different Abkhazians, from pupil to president, in cities and in the countryside. It is the first time that the young country has been so extensively portrayed in words and images. 

Rob Hornstra and Arnold van Bruggen together form and are regarded as pioneers in crowdfunding. Support from donors (currently 352) enables them to travel to the Caucasus several times a year. The five-year documentary project aims to map the changes taking place in and around the Russian city of Sochi, which will host the Olympic Winter Games in 2014. 

My Grandma Was a Turtle. 
Photographs by Cuny Janssen.

For this rhapsodic artist's book, Dutch photographer Cuny Janssen visited that town of Bartlesville, Oklahoma, to photograph children with Native American ancestors and their surroundings. Her motivation was curiosity about what traces of their origins could be seen in these modern Native American children; the title refers to the Turtle clan of the Delaware tribe in Oklahoma. The 85 elegiac photos in this book, some in beautifully reproduced color, were taken with Janssen's large format camera, and include surprisingly anachronistic images of the prairie, complete with bison. Janssen's unique combination of children and history results in a lyrical bridge across time. The hand-pasted reproductions make this book feel like early photograph albums or collector's albums for cigarette cards. Limited edition of 1000 copies.

Selected as one of Antone's Picks on photo-eye Blog. Read the blog post here

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3 opmerkingen:

Unknown zei

En niet te vergeten: Judith van IJken (Mimicry) en Ellert Haitjema (Haphazard). Nota bene beide door Martin Parr geselecteerd. Vanwaar deze omissie?

Unknown zei

Excuse me, I'll translate my comment in English!

What about Dutch books by Judith van IJken (Mimicry) and Ellert Haitjema (Haphazard)? They notably have been selected by Martin Parr, but not listed here...
Check them out!

Unknown zei

Excuse me, I'll translate my comment in English!

What about Dutch books by Judith van IJken (Mimicry) and Ellert Haitjema (Haphazard)? They notably have been selected by Martin Parr, but not listed here...
Check them out!