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Book of the Week: A Pick by Ken Schles

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Ken Schles Ken Schles selects Unnamed Road by Jungjin Lee as Book of the Week.
Unnamed Road by Jungjin Lee
MACK, 2014.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Ken Schles who has selected Unnamed Road by Jungjin Lee published by MACK.

"Some books contain images that simply illustrate pre-conceived ideas or acknowledge something generally recognized. Some books contain images that go further: they span the gap between what we imagine the world to be and what we are told it is. But other books contain images that exist in an entirely different space. They deepen a mystery about seeing and being. They have a presence that tells you everything you need to know but they reveal nothing. No, no, that’s not true at all. They reveal everything you need to know. End it there. Clues. They contain clues: clues about place; clues as to a state of mind; clues to a larger existence; clues to something that happened; clues to yearning and beauty; clues and sadness. Jungjin Lee’s images taken in the disputed border region between the West Bank and Israel have a presence both palpable and transcendent. They take you forward across a landscape to reveal what has always been there, or at least what was there when she saw it, which appears to be one in the same. They force you to question yourself: question the assumptions you’ve made about being in the world and seeing something for the first time in a place you’ve been told about over and over again and thought you knew: but it turns out you knew nothing. You knew nothing about the sky, or the road: the dirt. The trees. That rock. A clump of unfurled barbed wire. Birds strewn across a line suspended over steel barrels. A cemetery. The aftermath of war, or someplace abandoned. There are no answers here. But maybe it’s because we’ve been asking the wrong questions. Everything here is all that can be taken in and all that can be fathomed. And they point to something I will return to again and again: because the depths of some things can never be fully fathomed."—Ken Schles

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Unnamed Road by Jungjin Lee. MACK, 2014.
Unnamed Road by Jungjin LeeMACK, 2014.

photo: Bryan Formhals

Ken Schles is the author of five monographs, including Invisible City and Night Walk, both recently released by Steidl. Ken Schles' books are considered "intellectual milestones in photography" (Süddeutsche Zeitung), "hellishly brilliant" (The New Yorker) and an "insight into the mind of a great photographer" (Hotshoe). A 1989 NYFA Fellow, Ken Schles has work collected in more than 100 museum and library collections throughout the world.

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