All posts filed under: Book Review

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Base – Valerio Platania

Usually when photographers decide to tackle the milieu of shopping centers and suburban culture, we’re presented with shelves stocked into oblivion, crying babies on leashes, and the trunk of the 2003 Town & Country so stuffed that it refuses to close. But instead of condemning consumerism and focusing on the earthly insides of these spaces, Valerio Platania remains at the confines, presenting a more formal study of not only the architecture of the spaces themselves, but of the strange and otherworldly nature of their existence. Though Base was shot at the fringes of different superstores in Spain, Portugal, and Italy, this work is anything but documentary. None of the photos have a given location, and are instead categorized into 5 chapters, all with titles relating to space exploration, colonization, and survival science. What results are images that seem like our earth relocated, a planetary base existing somewhere in the emptiness of the universe with only an eerie similarity of the home we used to know. The compositions are vibrant and engaging, but somehow still desolate. Shapes …

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Tate Shaw – The Ground

The Ground by Tate Shaw is both a stunning photo book and personal essay, spanning a tumultuous two years spent in the unlikely paired landscapes of Iceland and rural Pennsylvania. In the process of chasing a self-imposed obsession with creating a book, Shaw unearths some truly illuminating and multifaceted metaphors of energy and ground, revealing how this obsession changed his entire attitude towards thought, photography, and creative intention. The essay and photographs are seamlessly interwoven, mirroring each other in a narrative of a fight for energy, both physically and creatively. With his images of geothermal plants, an underground coal fire that has burned for fifty years, and bright pits of hazardous run-off from hydrofracking, Shaw tells the story of the violent relationship humans have with the ground in attempts to harness its energy. The images are inkjet printed on rich, heavy printmaking paper, and selectively washed out with water to smear and obscure them. They progress in intensity, starting with softer, solid ground which steadily gets rougher, plants and soil turning into sparse rocks, choppy …

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Irina Rozovsky – One to Nothing

Irina Rozovsky was born in Moscow and grew up in Boston. She received a BA in French and Spanish Literature from Tufts University and an MFA in Photography from the Massachusetts College of Art. She currently lives in Brooklyn, NY and teaches at the International Center of Photography. Her recent monograph, One to Nothing, was named as one of the best photo books of the year by Alec Soth and Photo-Eye Magazine. —— In 1988, photographer Irina Rozovsky and her family were supposed to emigrate from the USSR to Israel, just like many other Jewish families at the time. But they never arrived. Instead, they settled in America, almost on a whim. Rozovsky finally made it to Israel in 2008, and with that visit, she entered the realm of what-if that we all carry at the back of our throats. There, her photo book One to Nothing began unintentionally, as the orange and dusted country moved her to make more photographs in a single week than she had in the past two years combined. To …

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DANIEL GEBHART DE KOEKKOEK – THE WORLD WE LIVE IN

Daniel Gebhart de Koekkoek started his career in 2006 and worked as an intern with Magnum Photos, NYC, in 2008. He is currently based in Vienna, Austria and has worked for renowned magazines such as VICE, Vanity Fair, Monocle, Travel+Leisure, The Financial Times, Zeit Magazin, SZ-Magazin. His work has been included in several independent art publications and exhibited throughout Europe, Asia, and The United States. The World We Live In was listed as one of the best photo books of 2013 by ilovethatphoto.net, and was voted photo book of the year at PDN Photo Annual 2014. It features full bleed layouts, a lay flat cover design, and a stunning print quality on gorgeous paper. All of us here at Aint-Bad are in love with this book. With no introduction or guidance, the reader is taken around the world: through snowy campers in St. Moritz, a mass baptism in Vienna, or a nuclear power plant in Zwentendorf, Koekkoek presents these small universes, never trying to force a uniform message or deeper meaning in the narrative. It’s …

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Nguan – How Loneliness Goes

Nguan grew up in Singapore and graduated with a degree in Film and Video Production from Northwestern University in Illinois. His first monograph, Shibuya, was named in PDN Annual as one of the best photo books of 2010, and his work has been featured in publications such as Arkitip, It’s Nice That, and the Vice Photo Issue. —— In Nguan’s second monograph entitled How Loneliness Goes, soft light and a muted palette coat moments of rare solace in one of the most crowded countries in the world. We are hit with the word loneliness before even opening the cover, and as the pages go by we start to question if the subjects are the lonely ones, or if maybe it’s the artist. Or maybe it’s all of us. The work unfolds slowly and becomes a nod to all those who feel alone in a crowded room, who live on busy streets, and get a little more lost with every face they see. But this monograph isn’t only about loneliness. It’s also about Singapore. Nguan has …

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JONATHAN LIPKIN – LIVINGSTON COUNTY PHOTOGRAPHS 2006-2011

Jonathan Lipkin is a photographer, writer, and professor of digital media at Ramapo College of New Jersey. He has lectured internationally on issues of digital media and is the author of Photography Reborn and In the Realm of the Circuit. ———- Livingston County is a collection of photographs featuring the small towns of New York run by hunting rifles, hard work, and Coors Light. Lipkin winds a stunning narrative through both slick winters and the dry husks of summer, and what originally started as an assignment to photograph salt mines expanded into a four year project exploring rural isolation, the psychology of its people, and examining what it means to belong. It’s at the same time both positive and negative, uneasy and somehow comfortable. It’s as close to a first hand account that can be reached without actually being a part of the town, and Lipkin aptly described the experience as a “complicated blend of aggression and tenderness, compassion and brutality, as I was greeted with open arms and a wariness that befit my status …

Marco Lachi – How Does It Feel…

Marco Lachi was born in Florence, Italy, working as a planner in an architectural firm before graduating from the Fondazione Studio Marangoni in 2007. His work has been featured in ZOOM, Ojo de Pez, and European Photography. From 2008 to 2011, he lived in Cape Town, South Africa, working as a freelance photographer. During that period, Marco collaborated on the book How Does It Feel To Be Leaving The Most Beautiful City In The World? with African writer and journalist, Olufemi Terry. The book was a finalist in the 5th Dummy Award at the 2012 Photobook Festival Kassel, and has been featured in many places such as CPH Mag and Fotografia Magazine. —— If you were to pick up Marco Lachi’s How Does It Feel To Be Leaving The Most Beautiful City In The World? without any prior knowledge of the past of Cape Town, you’d still be able to feel the tension slowly creeping in before reaching any of the text. The photos start lush and idyllic, painting a portrait of the luxurious side …

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BRETT KALLUSKY – JOURNEY WITH VIEWS

Brett Kallusky was born in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1975 and is currently a visiting Assistant Professor of photography at the University of Wisconsin–River Falls. He received his MFA in photography from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2005 and his work is held in both private and public collections including the Maxine and Stuart Frankel Foundation and Macalester College. Brett was the 2005/20006 recipient of the Miguel Vinciguerra Fulbright Fellowship to work on a photographic project entitled Viaggio con Vista in Italy. In 2010, he received a Minnesota State Arts Board Initiative Grant to continue his photographic work in Italy, and once again in 2013 to self publish a book of the project. —— This project, Viaggio con Vista, or, Journey With Views, is a quintessential travel book. Taken all around Italy, Kallusky has published both in English and Italian and has been working on the collection for nearly eight years. It spans both black and white and color photos as well as polaroids of his time in Italy. Capturing riches and ruins, tourists and …

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BJARNE BARE – HOSE VARIATIONS

Bjarne Bare is a Norwegian photographer who graduated from the Oslo Academy of Fine Art. His work has been featured in Boooooom, Its Nice That, and Self Publish, Be Happy. He has won grants from the Arts Council in Norway, and is the co-founder of Melk, an artist run initiative gallery, studio space, and bookstore for new Scandinavian photography. His first monograph, Hose Variations, is currently distributed in three different continents by Blackbook, Melk, and Antennebooks. —— You can tell a lot about a person from the inanimate objects they surround themselves with: their clothes, the knick-knacks on their mantel, or maybe the blankets on their bed. But the last thing you’d think to check is their garden hose. Bare, however, might just change your mind. His monograph, Hose Variations, is exactly what you think it is: a forty page book filled with 27 studies of hoses from the neighborhoods of Los Angeles, Berlin, Oslo, Lodz, and Buenos Aires. Hose Variations could be considered a slight continuation of Bare’s previous series, Outboard Swaddle, an extensive …

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JUSTIN KIMBALL – WHERE WE FIND OURSELVES

Justin Kimball was born in New Jersey and received his M.F.A. in photography from the Yale University School of Art and Architecture. He is currently a Professor of Photography at Amherst College and the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and Aaron Siskind Fellowship. His monograph, Where We Find Ourselves, has been widely collected in libraries all over the world and was met with much international acclaim. —— In most of America’s attempts to escape their everyday lives, it isn’t all palm trees and tiled pools. The sterilized green and bikini waxes of upper class getaways are left behind and Kimball takes us on a vacation back to real nature. We end up at campgrounds, on dingy smoke-stacked beaches, at lakes with mud runs. It’s a wild and unkempt world where most of the country ends up spending their precious time off, unwinding among rocks and rivers, sparkling yellow water, and other people’s wet spandex. Ever since he made his first photograph of a ride operator drinking water from a gin bottle, Justin Kimball has been …

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SARA MACEL – MAY THE ROAD RISE TO MEET YOU

Sara Macel was recently named one of the Top 50 Photographers in Photolucida’s Critical Mass Award, received the Individual Photographer’s Fellowship Grant from the Aaron Siskind Foundation, and her first monograph, May the Road Rise to Meet You, has been featured in The New Yorker, Fraction Magazine, Condé Nast Traveler, CPW, and Lenscratch. —— Macel grew up with a travelling salesman father peddling telephone poles made out of Southern Yellow Pine. As a child, she always wondered where he went as she watched his car disappear down the driveway, and May The Road Rise To Meet You is the outcome of these early wonderings. Its sixty pages hold both real and fabricated scenes of an imagined career of her father Dennis, and a tender encapsulation of a daughter filling in the blanks of an entire life lived where she could not follow. Going back to both the places in her father’s past, and the places she imagined he could have been, the perspectives blur seamlessly from Macel to Dennis, all locations blend into the same …