Photo Books well worth a read
Photo books – Four keepers.
“Photographers books are dead”, to this we venomously disagree. With the continual spread of visual platforms such as instagram, the tech development in phone image quality (see google pixel !!) and the idea that “everyone is a photographer” we believe there is more space now than ever for professional photography. As we become desensitised to the flood of beautiful imagery thrashing our feeds and filling our everydays, the role of professional photography has been forced to mature into something more considerate. The role of photographers continues its story telling, however now to stand out and to engage an audience there is a call for authenticity that has not been so publicly displayed in such mass. With this public demand for validity in mind we have put a list of our favourite photo books that represent the quality and veracity that professional photographers are continuing to provide often unknown to many. Photo books are well and truly alive. They are doing an amazing job of representing the portion of visual artists responding to the desire for a more considerate medium of photography.
Kicking things off close to home. We have all been to the Riddly Road Market and experienced the melting pot of global culture. Lorenzo Vitturi book, Dalston Anatomy displays a tremendous consideration of the diversity of the area. “Vitturi recognised the market as a unique place where different cultures merge together in a celebration of life, diversity and unstoppable energy and was inspired to capture this place before it transformed beyond recognition.”. A visual joy of colour and tone, Vitturi’s appropriation of the market place brings a grin to our faces each time we peruse the books pages.
Some 400 rolls of film were used and he spent months in each location documenting. It is a very real book that tells the truth of time and place and offers an often unseen sight into the pockets of history that remain in these mostly deserted areas. “Empire is a fascinating journey across the South Atlantic exploring life on four remote islands – the British Overseas Territories of Ascension Island, Tristan da Cunha, the Falkland Islands and St. Helena – relics of the once formidable British Empire, all intertwined through their shared history.”
This photo book/ project undertaken for the Rijksmuseum, Wildschut delves into the mirky waters of the food industry with the rigour of a scientist. Best read after a meal as Wildschuts ability to portray the rawness (excuse the pun) of the subject matter will be sure to put you off your dinner. It’s a stark and honest depiction of the food industry is.
“I was full of preconceptions about the food industry. I saw it as dishonest, unhealthy and unethical. More than that, it was contributing to the decline of our planet, unlike in the good old days, and I felt that the magic word ‘organic’ was going to solve everything. So when I embarked on this project, my first impulsive reaction was to bring to light all the misunderstandings about food once and for all… Often, an excessively one-sided approach to the subject of food is a barrier to real solutions. Food is simply too wide-ranging and complex a subject for one-liners or to be describing in terms of black and white.”
Put together by a range of artist who are listed below.
Thomas Joshua Cooper
Rebecca Norris Webb
The book centres around a single quote “Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” -Antoine de Saint-Exupery.
Each artist approaches the words with inquisitive angles and intent. Each image is accompanied by a writer, asked to respond to the image and the wider theme of minimalism and the time we are all currently a part of.
Libreria // 65 Hanbury St London, E1 5JP, UK
Artwords Bookshop // 69 Rivington Street, London, EC2A 3AY
Hoxton Minipress // Online (fervorously local ethos)
MagCulture // 270 St John Street, London EC1V 4PE
Bricklane Book Stop // 166 Brick Lane, London, E1 6RU
Freedom Press // Angel Alley, Whitechapel High St, London, E1 7QX
Trolley Books // 59 Riding House Street, London, W1W 7EG
Magma // 117-119 Clerkenwell Rd, London EC1R 5BY