All posts tagged: photobook

From the series White Noise Black Mirror © David Molina Gadea

Q&A: David Molina Gadea on his book project White Noise Black Mirror

Born in Tarragona, Spain in 1991, David Molina Gadea studied Arts at the Massana School from 2009 to 2012, and started to work with local newspapers shortly after graduating. In 2015 he did voluntary work in several centres for asylum seekers in Belgium, where he shot a series called The Long Way home, which was published in BJP’s September 2016 issue. He reached the final in Burn Magazine’s Emergent Photographer Fund, and recently joined the Portuguese agency 4SEE.  BJP: How would you describe your style? DMG: My work is documentary, so everything you see is what was truly going on. But when it comes to editing and sequencing the work, I try to build a less factual world where magic exists. That’s why some of the pictures are becoming more abstract, or I prefer to say ambiguous. I’m becoming less interested in depicting the world of facts, and more interested in poetry, in a kind of emotional territory. In the end it is just about documenting the world around me, but documenting the poetic and emotional …

2017-01-17T15:29:50+00:00

All images from the book You Haven't Seen Their Faces © Daniel Mayrit

Daniel Mayrit’s portraits of the rich and powerful financial elite

“In the past, no government had the power to keep its citizens under constant surveillance,” wrote George Orwell in his novel 1984. But where his work depicts an imaginary dystopian society, a version of the mass surveillance it describes is now an everyday reality in the West. Civil liberties, some contend, are being traded for security. That’s the debate Spanish photographer Daniel Mayrit engages with in You Haven’t Seen Their Faces, a seminal work which won the Paris Photo-Aperture Foundation First PhotoBook Award in November 2015. The book is a bizarre collection of CCTV-style, strongly pixellated and blown-up portraits of “The 100 most powerful people in the City of London”, coarsely printed on Kraft paper and bound together with three gold-coloured screws. Every image is tagged with hand-written notes and a caption, giving the same information about each subject – full name, position, company, reported net worth and/or salary. The basic data that goes with the picture of Christian Levett, for example, reads “Founder. Clive Capital. £13m salary. Net worth £250m”, presented in a font that suggests officialdom. …

2016-11-29T16:07:04+00:00

bjp-0816-1-28

Wolfgang Tillmans’ Portrait of the Artist

BJP

“It’s not a one-two-three, but this is number four in a series of books I have published with Walther Koenig, that began in 1997 with Concorde,” says Wolfgang Tillmans. “In 2012, it was FESPA Digital/Fruit Logistica; last year, The Cars; and now Conor Donlon. All four are monothematic, in-depth, slightly obsessive.” Tillmans’ new publication does seem a little obsessive. Containing pictures of Conor Donlon spanning 15 years, the book mixes posed and informal shots, showing Donlon at work, at play, even at the barber’s. Donlon joined Tillmans’ studio in 2001 and stayed for several years, before setting up his well-respected eponymous photobook shop; arranged chronologically, these portraits mark his transition from young graduate to creative linchpin, but they also show Tillmans’ shifting perspectives on the man. “What’s interesting is the narrative shifts,” he explains. “In some pictures he is working as my assistant; others were taken after work or on holiday. But he also appeared in some of the rare fashion shoots I did. There is an image from a fashion story I styled for purple …

2016-10-21T15:05:46+00:00

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A moment in time: An exploration of Cuba through the years

When documentary photographer Manuello Paganelli first landed in Cuba in 1988, he felt as if he had been transported back 20 years. “I saw Cuba as a black and white world,” he says, as he recalls how he stood out for the modern clothes he wore, and how the only cars visible on roads shattered by pot holes were sun-bleached Russian Moskovitz’s. “I thought I’d landed back in time, or like in scene out of the movie Twilight Zone, where strange things happen and are unresolved.” Paganelli, who is half Italian and half Cuban, travelled to the then largely commercially and photographically unexplored country to reconnect with lost relatives. He did so, but discovered that with each visit his curiosity for the Cuban way of life grew. Today, he has made over 60 trips. His new book, Cuba: A Personal Journey 1989-2015, is a collection of 115 black and white photographs, capturing the happenings of daily life of ordinary people during a time when having a bar of soap or a bottle of cooking oil was seen as a …

2016-10-21T15:14:51+00:00

Winner of the Unseen Dummy Award announced

Amsterdam’s annual celebration of photography Unseen Photo Fair closed for the year earlier this month, but not before showcasing some of the most interesting work in contemporary photography. During the fair and festival, Yoshinori Masuda won the Unseen Dummy Award for his photobook, Tiger 2. For his project, the Japanese photographer visited a zoo to depict two tigers in a state of repose, hinting at ideas around the dangerous state of nature and the  unsettling power of the gaze. Much of Masuda’s thinking behind Tiger 2 was influenced by an eclectic jumble of high-minded influences, including mathematical laws and scientific theories, but he was initially prompted by the simplest of reasons: “I was attracted by [the tigers]. Therefore I photographed them.” Masuda was immensely grateful for receiving the award, but as he tells the BJP, the most pleasing aspect of the award is the larger audience the prize affords: “I just want people to have the book in their hands, and enjoy it until it falls apart.” Masuda was chosen by an international jury, consisting of …

2015-09-30T10:20:41+00:00

Bedroom studio. Isle of Dogs, East London

Boys in the corner: Simon Wheatley’s images of Britain’s most exciting music subculture

It’s 2012 and in East London, the long-awaited Olympic Games are underway. Stratford, home to the new £537 million Olympic stadium and Westfield shopping centre, is heaving. Tourist money pours in. London, the UK and the world beyond, gets into the spirit of celebration. Simon Wheatley is in a living room in Maryland, a poor residential area less than a mile away from the Olympic Village. He’s recording this historic moment in time through the eyes of Chronik, a veteran grime MC. Through a haze of smoke, Chronik talks about the challenges of raising his family: “Now you want to make it a nice, white area, but what happened to the last ten years?” While he talks, he taps a Playstation controller, firing gunshots at clay targets on an Olympics video game. “That’s exactly it.” Wheatley says, pointing at the crisp symbolism playing out on his iPad screen three years on. “He was so near. Yet the only way he could gain access to the Olympics was in a video game – in virtual reality.” The …

2015-10-15T10:47:03+00:00

Boom, Belgium, 1988. © 2015 Harry Gruyaert / Magnum Photos.

Harry Gruyaert: “There is no story. It’s just a question of shapes and light”

“There is no story. It’s just a question of shapes and light,” Harry Gruyaert says. The storied Magnum photographer is notoriously reluctant to share how he creates his celebrated photography. As one of the first European photographers to take advantage of the creative potential colour photography held,  Gruyaert rarely follows received wisdom — as seen in the first English-language monograph of Gruyaert’s work, published by Thames & Hudson and offering a comprehensive retrospective of his career. While American photographers such as William Eggleston and Stephen Shore were eagerly embracing the new possibilities of colour, many photographers in Europe of the same generation preferred to relegate it to use in advertising, press and illustration. Gruyaert feels closer to the American approach. “In Europe and especially France, there’s a humanistic tradition of people like Cartier-Bresson where the most important thing is the people, not so much the environment,” he says. “I admired it, but I was never linked to it. I was much more interested in all the elements:  the decor and the lighting and all the cars: the details were …

2016-03-03T11:19:34+00:00

June2015

BJP #7836: The Book Club

The latest issue of British Journal of Photography is a celebration of the contemporary photobook, the primary art form for contemporary photographers. We believe book-making, and the conceptualisation of books, has become the medium on which artists are now judged. There’s been an explosion of small publishers, and book-making rather than the simple creation of photography prints is now the dynamic area of modern photography. As independent publishers Aron Morel and Hannah Watson say in this issue: “The book is the ultimate space for the photograph” and “the best way of getting your work out there in a cohesive way”. And Self Publish, Be Happy’s Bruno Ceschel points out that the really big projects of the last five years were published before they were exhibited – Cristina de Middel’s Afronauts, Lorenzo Vitturi‘s Dalston Anatomy and Nicoló Degiorgis’ Hidden Islam. This issue of BJP includes interviews with publishers, designers, photographers and curators involved in book publishing. We’ve talked to photography luminaries like Michael Mack of the eponymous publishing house Mack, Simon Baker of Tate, and Michael Hoppen of the Michael Hoppen Gallery, and independent …

2015-05-28T16:02:18+00:00

GB. England. Bristol. Martin Parr's study. 2009.

The photobook according to Parr

He may look harmless in his open-toe sandals and comfortable sweater, but Martin Parr has been poking a stick at the establishment for nigh on 40 years, agitating for a more prominent status for photography through his own work and all that he admires. For the past decade, he’s made it his quest to put the book centre stage within photographic culture, challenging academics to rethink the history of our medium, attempting to put it back into the hands of its makers. With The Photobook: A History, Volume III, co-authored by Parr and Gerry Badger, and published by Phaidon, upon us, I was invited to the Bristol-based photographer’s home, to delve into his unrivalled collection of up to 12,000 books, which he’s used to piece together a previously unwritten account of an undervalued aspect of our image culture. The approach to Martin Parr’s front door must be made by foot, as it’s set back from a path with not a road or car in sight. It’s a beautiful house, in the halfway zone between the over-scrubbed Georgian terraces …

2015-08-14T12:53:23+00:00

BJP Staff