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Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Michael Light Michael Light selects The Ground by Tate Shaw as Book of the Week.
The Ground. By Tate Shaw.
Preacher's Biscuit Books, 2013.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Michael Light who has selected The Ground by Tate Shaw from Preacher’s Biscuit Books.

Book Review Written In The West, Revisited By Wim Wenders Reviewed by Tom Leininger If you tell stories in cinema, why make still pictures? That is one of the questions I had going into Wim Wenders' Written In The West Revisited. Wenders used still photography for the specific purpose of exploring the American West to learn about its color and light.

Written in the West, Revisited. By Wim Wenders. 
DAP/Distributed Art Publishers, 2015.
 
Written in the West, Revisited
Reviewed by Tom Leininger

Written in the West, Revisited
Photographs by Wim Wenders. Contribution by Alain Bergala.
D.A.P./Distributed Art Publishers, 2015. In English. 108 pp., 58 color illustrations, 9½x10¼x¾".


If you tell stories in cinema, why make still pictures? That is one of the questions I had going into Wim Wenders' Written In The West Revisited. Wenders used still photography for the specific purpose of exploring the American West to learn about its color and light. Photography for the sake of photography. The resulting pictures go beyond just a straightforward recording, but show Wenders’ mastery of the still image.

Book Review Mark Ruwedel Photographs by Mark Ruwedel Reviewed by Allie Haeusslein As the winner of the 2014 Scotiabank Photography Award — a prestigious honor celebrating achievement in contemporary Canadian photography — Mark Ruwedel received a $50,000 cash prize, an exhibition at the Ryerson Image Center in Toronto and a publication produced by Steidl.
Mark RuwedelBy Mark Ruwedel
Steidl, 2015.
 
Mark Ruwedel
Reviewed by Allie Haeusslein

Mark Ruwedel
Photographs by Mark Ruwedel. Text by Grant Arnold. Contribution by Gaëlle Morel and Paul Roth.
Steidl, Gottingen, Germany, 2015. 228 pp., 12x10".
 

As the winner of the 2014 Scotiabank Photography Award — a prestigious honor celebrating achievement in contemporary Canadian photography* — Mark Ruwedel received a $50,000 cash prize, an exhibition at the Ryerson Image Center in Toronto and a publication produced by Steidl. The first book to assess the photographer’s entire career, Mark Ruwedel includes sixteen bodies of work and a section dedicated to selected bookworks, spanning the 1980s through 2010s. Steidl beautifully translates the lush tonality and tactile quality of his black-and-white (and occasional color) photographs to the printed page, employing a straightforward layout that echoes the work’s minimal aesthetic. Presented individually and in chronological order, Ruwedel’s projects become more resonant when viewed within the context of his vast and tightly coherent oeuvre, marked by consistent formal, aesthetic and conceptual interests.

photo-eye Gallery Portfolio: Kate Breakey – Las Sombras/The Shadows photo-eye Gallery is pleased to introduce Las Sombras/The Shadows, a portfolio of hand-colored photograms by Kate Breakey. Paired with Golden Stardust, just released two weeks ago, Las Sombras/The Shadows represents the second half of Breakey's exhibition Shadows & Light currently on view at photo-eye Gallery through August 22nd.
Installation View – Las Sombras/The Shadows by Kate Breakey at photo-eye Gallery

photo-eye Gallery is pleased to introduce Las Sombras/The Shadows, a portfolio of hand-colored photograms by Kate Breakey. Paired with Golden Stardust, just released two weeks ago, Las Sombras/The Shadows represents the second half of Breakey's exhibition Shadows & Light currently on view at photo-eye Gallery through August 22nd.

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Irina Rozovsky Irina Rozovsky selects Tokyo Parrots by Yoshinori Mizutani as Book of the Week.
Tokyo Parrots. By Yoshinori Mizutani. 
Amana, 2014.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Irina Rozovsky who has selected Tokyo Parrots by Yoshinori Mizutani from Amana.


Book Review Early Works By Ivars Gravlejs Reviewed by Colin Pantall ‘I often felt nauseous before going to school because of the humiliation that I faced with my teachers. The only way to survive school was to do something creative…’ says Latvian-born artist, Ivars Gravlejs. And that’s what he did; he got creative with a camera and he made a series of pictures centred around school that are now being published by Mack as a book called Early Works. It’s a great book.

Early Works. By Ivars Gravlejs
MACK, 2015.
 
Early Works = Early Works
A Review by Colin Pantall

Early Works
Photographs by Ivars Gravlejs
MACK, London, England, 2015. 144 pp., 8x10¾".


‘I often felt nauseous before going to school because of the humiliation that I faced with my teachers. The only way to survive school was to do something creative…’ says Latvian-born artist, Ivars Gravlejs.

And that’s what he did; he got creative with a camera and he made a series of pictures centred around school that are now being published by Mack as a book called Early Works. It’s a great book.

Nudes/Human Form Newsletter Nudes/Human Form Newsletter Vol. 13 photo-eye's Nudes/Human Form Newsletter features books that explore the human form in a variety of ways. Today we highlight titles from Sam Haskins, Aaron McElroy, René Groebli, Jordan Sullivan, John Ciamillo and Keith Carter.
photo-eye's Nudes/Human Form Newsletter features books that explore the human form in a variety of ways. Sign up for the Nudes/Human Form Newsletter here.

Book Review The Art of Ruin By Robert Stivers Reviewed by Melanie McWhorter A few years ago, I encountered a man outside of a darkroom. I was quietly sloshing away in the pitch-blackness illuminated by red light, using chemicals to fix the silver halides, developing, washing and fixing my image, and left the darkroom to see what had appeared, moving into the light like all silver gelatin printers do.

The Art of RuinBy Robert Stivers
Twin Palms Publishers, 2015.
 
The Art of Ruin
Reviewed by Melanie McWhorter

The Art of Ruin
Photographs by Robert Stivers
 Twin Palms Publishers, Santa Fe, 2015. 54 pp., 26 color illustrations, 16x20".

 A few years ago, I encountered a man outside of a darkroom. I was quietly sloshing away in the pitch-blackness illuminated by red light, using chemicals to fix the silver halides, developing, washing and fixing my image, and left the darkroom to see what had appeared, moving into the light like all silver gelatin printers do. There stood Robert Stivers, gazing at a 16x20 inch toned image: a beautiful, close-up, warm-toned photograph of honeybees. He talked about how he would print it darker, lighter, or maybe color it with coffee or tea. He was inexact in his process, but the aesthetics of his photographs benefited from his freedom.

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Jason Langer Jason Langer selects Proverbs by Gregori Maiofis as Book of the Week.
Proverbs. By Gregori Maiofis. 
Nazraeli Press, 2015.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Jason Langer who has selected Proverbs by Gregori Maiofis from Nazraeli Press.

Book Review hide By Jason Vaughn Reviewed by George Slade Now, imagine you’re a deer. A buck, bearing antlers with ten or twelve prongs, which with care and insistence you have rubbed on trees and rocks, making them resemble nothing so much as weapons; you have used these a few times to engage and discourage other bucks in the struggles for dominance and the opportunity to mate with chosen does.

hideBy Jason Vaughn
Trema Förlag, 2015.
 
hide
Reviewed by George Slade

hide
Photographs and text by Jason Vaughn
Trema Förlag, Stockholm, 2015. 74 pp., 40 four-color illustrations, 8¼x9½".


Now, imagine you’re a deer. A buck, bearing antlers with ten or twelve prongs, which with care and insistence you have rubbed on trees and rocks, making them resemble nothing so much as weapons; you have used these a few times to engage and discourage other bucks in the struggles for dominance and the opportunity to mate with chosen does.

photo-eye Gallery Portfolio: Keith Carter – Ghostland photo-eye Gallery is excited to open Ghostland, an exhibition of new work by Texas based photographer Keith Carter with an artist reception and book signing tomorrow, July 11th, from 3–5pm.
Installation View – Keith Carter: Ghostland
photo-eye Gallery is excited to open Ghostland, an exhibition of new work by Texas based photographer Keith Carter with an artist reception and book signing tomorrow, July 11th, from 3–5pm. Corresponding with the exhibition photo-eye is launching a new online portfolio of work by Carter from the Ghostland series including more than 20 images. The series, beginning in 2012, represents a bold new direction for Carter while maintaining his signature poetic sensibilities with a particular focus on the swamplands of the American South.

Book Review I Went to the Worst of Bars Hoping to Get Killed. But All I Could Do Was to Get Drunk Again By Ciaran Og Arnold Reviewed by Colin Pantall Photobooks based around bars, clubs and pubs figure large in lists of the best photobooks ever made. The mix of music, alcohol, and confined spaces all mix to create worlds that follow their own orbit.

 
The worst of bars, the best of books
A Review by Colin Pantall

I Went to the Worst of Bars Hoping to Get Killed. But All I Could Do Was to Get Drunk Again
Text by Ciaran Og Arnold.
Mack, 2015. 76 pp., 43 color illustrations, 6¼x8¾x½".


Photobooks based around bars, clubs and pubs figure large in lists of the best photobooks ever made. The mix of music, alcohol, and confined spaces all mix to create worlds that follow their own orbit. Books such as Café Lehmitz, Billy Monk, and Krass Clement’s Drum all feature small communities in closed spaces. Making meaningful pictures in these kinds of environments is a rare skill. There is horrible light, little control, and pictures have to be taken (or set up) amidst a background of visual noise; all the time there has to be a distillation of experience that preserves some sense of what it is like to be in this club, this pub, this bar. It’s not easy.

photo-eye Gallery Portfolio: Kate Breakey – Golden Stardust photo-eye is pleased to introduce Golden Stardust, a portfolio of new work by Australian born photographer Kate Breakey. The eclectic series is focused on intermittent states of being, featuring the soft and beautiful observations for which Breakey is known.
Kate Breakey – Golden Stardust installation view

photo-eye Gallery is pleased to announce Golden Stardust, a portfolio of new work by Australian born photographer Kate Breakey. The eclectic series is focused on intermittent states of being, featuring the soft and beautiful observations for which Breakey is known. Wrapped in dark and substantial frames, the images in Golden Stardust are crafted by transferring archival black-and-white pigment prints to glass plates, finishing them with a thin backing of 24 karat gold leaf. At first, the project's scope appears to be widespread as the imagery represents many traditional photographic genres including: landscape, classical still life, nude figure study, and wildlife, among others.

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Rupert Jenkins Rupert Jenkins selects Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain by Michael Light as Book of the Week.
Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain.
By Michael Light. Radius Books, 2015.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Rupert Jenkins who has selected Lake Las Vegas/Black Mountain by Michael Light from Radius Books.

Book Review < YO > < YO > < YO > By Roc Herms Reviewed by Sarah Bay Gachot I got the queasy vertiginous feeling of seeing things that are not really meant for me to see as I got to know the book < YO >< YO >< YO >, by Roc Herms. Upon arrival, aside from its publisher’s description that it was a book about “super-users” at Campus Party, an annual computer conference, this big pink rectangle with glossy pages was an inscrutable artifact, a dense pictorial index with lots of quirky imagery tiling its pages...
< YO >< YO >< YO > by Roc Hermes. 
Self-Published, 2015.
< YO > < YO > < YO >
Reviewed by Sarah Bay Gachot

< YO > < YO > < YO >
Photographs by Roc Herms
Self-Published, Barcelona, 2015. In English and Spanish. 96 pp., 13½x9¾".


I got the queasy vertiginous feeling of seeing things that are not really meant for me to see as I got to know the book < YO >< YO >< YO >, by Roc Herms. Upon arrival, aside from its publisher’s description that it was a book about “super-users” at Campus Party, an annual computer conference, this big pink rectangle with glossy pages was an inscrutable artifact, a dense pictorial index with lots of quirky imagery tiling its pages — screenshots of chat text and personal desktop displays, photographs of people sitting at computers, lying on the floor using computers, sleeping next to computers, snapshots that are salacious, kooky, and just plain weird.

Nudes/Human Form Newsletter Nudes/Human Form Newsletter Vol. 12 photo-eye's Nudes/Human Form Newsletter features books that explore the human form in a variety of ways. Today we highlight titles from Massimo Leardini, Miroslav Tichy, Aaron McElroy and Ryan McGinley.
photo-eye's Nudes/Human Form Newsletter features books that explore the human form in a variety of ways. Past editions can be found here.

Pre-Order Deadline


Scandinavian
Photographs by Massimo Leardini

As featured in Desire: New Erotic Photography

The first book specifically devoted to the Scandinavian works of the Italian photographer Massimo Leardini. Presented in a luxurious large format clothbound hardcover book and beautifully reproduced using Triotone offest printing on Arctic Volume Ivory paper.

Rooted in the classical tradition, Leardini uses his unique aesthetic sensibility to capture the human body in harmony with the timeless Scandinavian landscape.

This First Edition is limited to just 440 numbered copies of which only a few remain.

photo-eye is taking pre-orders for copies of Scandinavian. If our supplier runs out, orders will be fulfilled in the order in which they are received. The cutoff time for ordering in our shipment is Monday, July 6th at 10:00 am MDT.


Pre-order or read more


Video Zoë Zimmerman on OF MEN: Strength and Vulnerability Photographer Zoë Zimmerman discusses her series OF MEN: Strength and Vulnerability, currently on view at photo-eye Bookstore & Project Space through July 11th, 2015.

Figure 12, 2014 – Zoë Zimmerman

We were delighted to sit down with Zoë Zimmerman to discuss her project OF MEN: Strength and Vulnerability. In this video Zimmerman speaks to the uncommon initial inspiration for the work and its incredible evolution while photographing in the studio. OF MEN is a project in three parts concerning physical touch amongst men in contemporary American society. Part III: Care, loosely based on a 1909 medical text, is currently on exhibit in the photo-eye BOOKSTORE + Project Space through July 11th.

Book Review Small Things in Silence By Masao Yamamoto Reviewed by Blake Andrews Seen in person, Yamamoto Masao's photographs make a strong impression. He creates small silver gelatin prints in a darkroom, then proceeds to beat them up. Through a combination of toning, dyes (sometimes in tea or coffee), tearing, folding, and general rough treatment he confers on them a worn quality.

Small Things in Silence. By Yamamoto Masao.
RM/Seigensha, 2015.
 
Small Things in Silence
Reviewed by Blake Andrews

Small Things in Silence
Photographs by Yamamoto Masao. Text by Jacobo Siruela and Yamamoto Masao.
RM/Seigensha, 2015. 144 pp., 9¾x12¼x¾".

Seen in person, Yamamoto Masao's photographs make a strong impression. He creates small silver gelatin prints in a darkroom, then proceeds to beat them up. Through a combination of toning, dyes (sometimes in tea or coffee), tearing, folding, and general rough treatment he confers on them a worn quality. Anyone who collected baseball cards as a kid, stacked in a rubber band, left in the rain, and then stuffed in the back pocket, will find the effects familiar. If a photograph can smile through age wrinkles, Yamamoto's do.

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Mariken Wessels Mariken Wessels selects Les extravagantes by Leendert Blok as Book of the Week.
Les extravagantes. By Leendert Blok. 
Editions Xavier Barral, 2015.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Mariken Wessels who has selected Les extravagantes by Leendert Blok from Editions Xavier Barral.

Book Review Until Death Do Us Part By Thomas Sauvin Reviewed by Colin Pantall I still have a certain nostalgia for the days when I smoked. In England, it was the ritual of rolling up Golden Virginia in English pubs with ceilings glowing yellow with the accumulated deposits of nicotine and tar. It was beautiful, atmospheric and, strangely enough, did not smell smoky. In Indonesia, the attraction was the sweet clouds of clove-flavored kreteks.

Until Death Do Us Part. By Thomas Sauvin.
Jiazazhi Press, 2015.
 
Until Death Do Us Part
Reviewed by Colin Pantall

Until Death Do Us Part 
By Thomas Sauvin
Jiazazhi Press, China, 2015. 108 pp., 2x3¼".


I still have a certain nostalgia for the days when I smoked. In England, it was the ritual of rolling up Golden Virginia in English pubs with ceilings glowing yellow with the accumulated deposits of nicotine and tar. It was beautiful, atmospheric and, strangely enough, did not smell smoky. In Indonesia, the attraction was the sweet clouds of clove-flavored kreteks. Gudang Garams were my favorite, best taken with dark coffee and a volcano in the background. And if there wasn’t a volcano, well the traffic jams of downtown Jakarta were a pretty good substitute. Head to the States and smoking made you feel like a man. Cowboys smoked and so did the characters in Robert Frank’s The Americans or William Klein’s New York. And if you weren’t a man, cigarettes were torches of freedom. You’ve come a long way baby, who could say no.

Video Thomas Jackson on Emergent Behavior Photographer Thomas Jackson discusses his show Emergent Behavior, currently on view at photo-eye Gallery through July 4th, 2015.

Review Santa Fe Closing Reception at photo-eye Gallery, Sunday June 14th

On Sunday June 14th, photo-eye Gallery was honored to host the closing reception for CENTER's renowned Review Santa Fe – a four day event featuring lectures on photography and portfolio reviews. In addition to the reception, we were thrilled that CENTER alumnus and 2014 Curator's Choice award winner Thomas Jackson generously flew in from California to deliver a pre-celebration gallery talk on his exhibition Emergent Behavior, currently on view at photo-eye Gallery.  In the lecture, Jackson addresses the genesis behind Emergent Behavior as well  the project's progression over time and its symbiotic relationship with both sculpture and installation. As the room is packed with fellow artists and engaged community members, the Q&A developed naturally and is particularly engaging as Jackson speaks to future directions within his practice.

Book Review Playground Photographs by James Mollison Reviewed by Karen Jenkins A “space of excitement, games, bullying, laughing, tears, teasing, fun and fear” is how photographer James Mollison remembers the school playground of his childhood. This is a loaded summary, and the photographs he made there and at other playgrounds the world over are similarly packed full of the complexities of these arenas of recreation and recess.

Playground. By James Mollison.
Aperture, 2015.
 
Playground
Reviewed by Karen Jenkins

Playground
Photographs by James Mollison. Text by Jon Ronson.
Aperture, New York, 2015. 136 pp., 59 color illustrations, 6x8¼x¾".

A “space of excitement, games, bullying, laughing, tears, teasing, fun and fear” is how photographer James Mollison remembers the school playground of his childhood. This is a loaded summary, and the photographs he made there and at other playgrounds the world over are similarly packed full of the complexities of these arenas of recreation and recess. During 2009-2014, Mollison photographed in Argentina, Bhutan, Bolivia, China, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Nepal, Norway, Russia, Sierra Leone, the United Kingdom, the United States and the West Bank. He visited schools for the privileged and the poor, private and public, and like his earlier project Where Children Sleep, the photographs collected in Playground are striking in their depiction of cultural and economic disparities amplified in their variation on the theme. The many photographs Mollison made during each school visit were source material for the composite photographs he made to represent each experience of play and the playground. He describes his technique as a type of time lapse, by which each photograph’s figures and groupings become summary of all he observed, rather than the emblematic representatives of a singular chosen moment.

photo-eye Gallery Opening Friday July 10th: Kate Breakey - Shadows & Light | Keith Carter - Ghostland photo-eye Gallery is excited to announce concurrent exhibitions by renowned photographers Kate Breakey and Keith Carter with an opening and artist reception on Saturday July 11th from 3–5 PM.




Exhibition Dates: Friday July 10th through August 22nd, 2015 
Opening and Artist Reception: Saturday July 11th 3:00–5:00 pm 
photo-eye Gallery, 541 S. Guadalupe Street, Santa Fe, NM

photo-eye Gallery is excited to announce concurrent exhibitions by renowned photographers Kate Breakey and Keith Carter with an opening and artist reception on Saturday July 11th from 3–5 PM. Titled Shadows & Light and Ghostland, respectively, these exhibitions will feature new work by Breakey and Carter as well as selections from established projects.


Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Ying Ang Ying Ang selects Prophet by Geert Goiris as Book of the Week.
The Prophet. By Geert Goiris.
Roma Publications, 2015.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Ying Ang who has selected Prophet by Geert Goiris from Roma Publications.

"Prophet begins with what appears to me as an ode to Sisyphus. A boulder, dark and discarded, a symbol of futility and toil, wrapped up in a posthumous reckoning. Our characters are for the most part solitary, embarked on their own micro journeys through the mountains and the snow. The sun appears once at the behest of two lovers, a moment of redemption in the midst of an eternal night.

This book serves as a visual metaphor for a constant hum of low level anxiety with a shriek of nervous laughter, a muffled moan, a gasp, a sigh. There are moments of such tension in certain photographs, strategically and rhythmically placed throughout the book; I felt my heart leap periodically as if timed to a metronome. The double gauge shotgun of a man dousing himself in the smoke of three cigarettes and a swathe of scorched earth, a crumpled arthropod awash in magenta and an icy green hued snowdrift pushed hard up against a darkened road. Geert's book is an aria of estrangement, linked through a wintery nightscape and startlingly confronting portraits. I approach the Prophet in wonder and discomfort in equal measure.

Recommended soundtrack:
Gnossienes 1 - 2 (1890): No. 1 by Erik Satie"—Ying Ang

Purchase Book

The Prophet. By Geert Goiris. Roma Publications, 2015.
The Prophet. By Geert Goiris. Roma Publications, 2015.


Based between Melbourne, Singapore and New York, Ying Ang is a photographer of social and contemporary issues. She graduated as valedictorian for the 2009-2010 class of Documentary Photography and Photojournalism at The International Centre of Photography, with a full portfolio acquired for the permanent collection of the Sagamihara City Museum in Japan and was a participant in the Reflexions Masterclass of 2011-2013.

Ying has lived and worked extensively in Asia, Africa, Australia and North America, having pursued post-graduate studies in Political Science with a background in Biotechnology and Communications. She most recently published her first major monograph, Gold Coast, which has since won the New York Photo Festival and Encontros Da Imagem book prize for 2014 and was a finalist for Australian Photobook of the Year. Gold Coast was also listed by Flak Photo, Lensculture, Voices of Photography, Mark Power / Magnum Photos, Asia Pacific Photobook Archive and Self Publish Be Happy in their top photobooks of 2014. Ying is currently a part of the teaching faculty at The International Centre of Photography in New York and the Photography Studies College in Melbourne, Australia.


See more Book of the Week picks

Book Review Skin By June Yong Lee Reviewed by George Slade We should all be thankful for the interior structure our body gives us. That is, the cubic volume we occupy courtesy of bones, muscles, tendons, and cartilage keeping it all together, more and less, over time. I express this gratitude as I consider June Yong Lee’s photographs of unwrapped torsos; skin, seen in planar fashion, as though a rug on your floor, a tapestry on your wall, or a blanket on your bed...

SkinBy June Yong Lee
The Arts at California Institute of Integral Studies, 2015.
 
Skin
Reviewed by George Slade

Skin
Photographs by June Yong Lee. Essay by Tina Takemoto.
The Arts at California Institute of Integral Studies, 2015. Unpaged, 30 color illustrations.


We should all be thankful for the interior structure our body gives us. That is, the cubic volume we occupy courtesy of bones, muscles, tendons, and cartilage keeping it all together, more and less, over time. I express this gratitude as I consider June Yong Lee’s photographs of unwrapped torsos; skin, seen in planar fashion, as though a rug on your floor, a tapestry on your wall, or a blanket on your bed, loses whatever seductive qualities it had when it was still enwrapping a body. I say this about human epidermis, of course. Other animals, skinned, yield pelts and hides of great value, enhanced through the rendering.

Book Review Adrift By Ben Alper Reviewed by Sarah Bay Gachot In late August of 1991, the Regal Princess sailed from Fort Lauderdale bound for the Caribbean a few weeks after being named by her “godmother,” Margaret Thatcher, in Brooklyn, New York. On board this new floating resort, with its dolphin-inspired silhouette designed by Renzo Piano, were over 2000 passengers, 600 crew, an art collection that included works by Robert Motherwell, Richard Diebenkorn, David Hockney, and Helen Frankenthaler...
Adrift by Ben Alper. 
Flat Spaces Books, 2015.
Adrift
Reviewed by  Sarah Bay Gachot

Adrift
By Ben Alper.
Flat Space Books, Carrboro NC / Brooklyn, NY, 2015. 68 pp., 38 four-color illustrations, 10x8".


In late August of 1991, the Regal Princess sailed from Fort Lauderdale bound for the Caribbean a few weeks after being named by her “godmother,” Margaret Thatcher, in Brooklyn, New York. On board this new floating resort, with its dolphin-inspired silhouette designed by Renzo Piano, were over 2000 passengers, 600 crew, an art collection that included works by Robert Motherwell, Richard Diebenkorn, David Hockney, and Helen Frankenthaler, suites with private balconies and marble bathrooms, eight different musical acts, Gavin MacLeod (the actor who played Captain Stubing on the original Love Boat), and, very likely, thousands and thousands of rolls of 35mm film, each ready to be loaded into a camera where it might capture a few facets of the spectacle.


Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Jon Evans Jon Evans selects Evidence by Diana Matar as Book of the Week.
Evidence. By Diana Matar. 
Schilt Publishing, 2015.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Jon Evans who has selected Evidence by Diana Matar from Schilt Publishing.

Book Review T: A Typology of T-Shirts By Susan A Barnett Reviewed by Melanie McWhorter Markings are a very personal thing for me. I have no tattoos and I have no bumper stickers. Sounds quite boring, but it is really a commitment issue and I hope not a sign of my lackluster personality. What do I want to say that is important enough for me to use my body or vehicle as an advertisement of my beliefs? Clothing, now that would be easier; it is not permanent.

T: A Typology of T-ShirtsBy Susan A Barnett
Dewi Lewis, 2014.
 
T: A Typology of T-Shirts
Reviewed by Melanie McWhorter

T: A Typology of T-Shirts
Photographs by Susan A Barnett.
Dewi Lewis Publishing, 2014. 160 pp., illustrated, 6¾x9¼".

Markings are a very personal thing for me. I have no tattoos and I have no bumper stickers. Sounds quite boring, but it is really a commitment issue and I hope not a sign of my lackluster personality. What do I want to say that is important enough for me to use my body or vehicle as an advertisement of my beliefs? Clothing, now that would be easier; it is not permanent. The T-shirt is a handy a piece of clothing used for this personal declaration. Despite the short-lived nature of their manifesto (provided that the wearer changes into a fresh clothing the next day), the T-shirt’s markings can express much about the wearer. I often wonder, who are these people who want to bear their soul, open themselves up to ridicule or hostility and openly declare what they feel and think on a piece of clothing? Susan Barnett is also intrigued. In 2009 she started to collect these shirts, not the object themselves, but photographs of the backs of the shirts on the wearer in closely cropped environmental portraits. She has hundreds of images from the United States and Europe in this collection and her new book, T: A Typology of T-Shirts published by Dewi Lewis, shows people of varying ages, races and backgrounds in the United States and Europe broadcasting their right to free speech and expression by donning the comfortable and pervasive fashion accessory.

T: A Typology of T-ShirtsBy Susan A Barnett. Dewi Lewis, 2014.

T: A Typology of T-Shirts is, as the title says, a typology. Barnett shows one after the other, individuals proudly showing their style and often their words, slogan or mantra. The word pride reveals itself prominently in her work. Each subject stands tall in posture, likely straighter than their normal stance. They profess through her work, tantalizing us with not just what we see, but also what is left out. It is the ‘what’ that Barnett gives us, but we want to know the who, why, and occasionally the where. Yet, where she excels is her portraiture. Despite the curiosity that the unseen evokes, she presents more about these individuals from the back than conceivably the front and, more poignantly, the eyes, could reveal.

T: A Typology of T-ShirtsBy Susan A BarnettDewi Lewis, 2014.

Barnett has done her job as a typologist, recording one after another. What the project says as a whole references contemporary society more than the individual. There is strength in her numbers. While her photographs have the power to sit solitarily on the page or hang on the wall and inspire reflections, thoughts, or giggles, the groupings highlight contemporary fashion, politics and popular culture in the United States and Europe since the first decade of the 21st century. The book is where Barnett and publisher Dewi Lewis get to play with her work. In the opening image a young man stands in a concrete-filled urban setting clad in black shorts with a multi-key lanyard clipped to his pants and visible portions of a black snake winding around his arm, wearing a black sleeveless T that reads “Life’s Too Short To Wear Boring Clothes”. This image is followed by a man in a park wearing a white sleeveless shirt reading, “FASHION IS SO OUT.” The final in the triptych shows a young woman whose shirt states “Maybe Not”. That sets the mood for this book.

T: A Typology of T-ShirtsBy Susan A BarnettDewi Lewis, 2014.

That sequence opens to the next twenty spreads of T-shirt imagery with religious icons, Magritte inspired surrealist designs and animal patterns. With the final of these graphic plates the tone starts to change as we see angel wings with two .45 caliber handguns conspicuously pointing downward in the design. Themes that follow deal with killing, redemption, misogyny, oppression, anti-violence, money. Warhol, Picasso and Haring’s work all make an appearance along with Elvis, King Kong and Mickey Mouse. There is sex and more sex, drugs and more drugs, death metal, and energy alternatives. Jesus and Virgin Mary mix with Ganesh and Krishna. In one spread Jesus looks skyward on the black T-shirt of a man spending a day at the beach, contrasting with Marilyn Manson seeming to model the same gesture on the shirt of a young woman, maybe on holiday at the very same beach. The sequencing is easy, but brilliant. The opening spreads set the stage for lightness, fun, humor and fashion, but the meat of the book prompts serious conversations about difficult topics through exploring ourselves and our neighbors. In the end, the tone shifts again to optimism with the “Yes We Can” motto that symbolized change for a nation just before the beginning of this project. Filled with thematic groupings and diptychs playing with color, design and ideas, T: A Typology of T-Shirts is cleverly designed to provoke emotion, thought and possibly discussion and curiosity.

T: A Typology of T-ShirtsBy Susan A BarnettDewi Lewis, 2014.

Neither typologies nor portraiture are new, but Barnett uses both of these photographic approaches to create a visual language of her own. The book finishes with words from the three shirts: “No Pictures Please,” Leave Me Alone,” and “Do Not Copy My Style.” Indeed, Susan Barnett.—MELANIE MCWHORTER

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Melanie McWhorter has managed photo-eye's Book Division for 16 years and is a regular contributor to the photo-eye Blog. She has been interviewed about photography in numerous print and online publications including PDN, The Picture Show and LayFlat, has judged the prestigious photography competitions Daylight Photo Awards and Fotografia: Fotofestival di Roma’s Book Prize, has reviewed portfolios at Fotografia, Photolucida, Review Santa Fe and PhotoNOLA, and taught and lectured at numerous venues.


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