Prefaces and Appendices, together, constitute an artist’s book by Jordan Tate. Prefaces is driven by the potential of the unrealised. At first glance, Tate appears to have one of the strongest exhibition histories of any contemporary artist. It boasts installation shots of the Swiss Institute in New York, Pilar Corrias Gallery in London, Wiels in Brussels and even immaculate depictions of his work hanging in the Guggenheim. This is all artifice. These images are Tate’s latest body of work titled Prefaces. For this series, he has constructed various works and then taken on the role of curator and created exhibitions. While composed solely in digital space, they read as pristine installation documentation, taken in physical space. In these photographs, light veils of shadow fall on perfect white walls and mirage-like reflections spread across high-shine gallery floors. Tate harnesses the power of the white cube as a validation, as a signifier of what is art of value. – Justine Ludwig
Contemporary Contemporary Photography
Most books you don’t want to get dated. This one needs to. Contemporary Contemporary Photography is a follow-up to Contemporary Photography from 2013. In this new publication, Paul Paper looks at the changed landscape of cultural vision-making and offers completely new texts that describe the motifs of art photography in 2017. Humorous and with a certain tongue-in-cheek edge, it is an evocative exploration of the contemporary condition of art photography and its making.
An amusement park is a variety show; it is a way to mask a mess. Marrying a discordant blend of documentary photography, studio improvisations, and impertinent portraits, these images navigate through a sketchy trip of frivolous entertainment, hobbyist tinkering, and the facade of luxury, all while threatening to malfunction in the process. Manic and colorful, the manicured world represented in this work is more akin to a comedown than a high. Geeting’s work sees a lot of circulation online. With Amusement Park we wanted to anchor the work to the printed page. We did not want to render on a reflective surface what is, in fact, meant to be seen on a backlit, digital screen. In the name of Geeting’s light and devil-may-care image making style and as referenced in the title, we bombard the viewer with four different paper stocks, traditional cmyk printing mixed with subjective, multicolor Pantone color profiles developed by Swiss design studio Colorlibrary.ch, all topped with rattlecan typography and wrapped in a plastic cover, ready to bring on your next log ride.
Lorenzo Vitturi’s work is often found at the intersection of sculpture and photography and his latest project, Dalston Anatomy, saw him spend time in London’s Ridley Road Market taking pictures, making sculptures and creating collages with materials and objects he found amongst the debris of the marketplace. Vitturi’s process is largely concerned with the creation, consumption and preservation of images. The makeshift sculptures he created mimic the organic and temporary nature of the market, and their documentation is the way in which they endure after diminishing. The book is bound in exquisite Vlisco fabrics in bright patterns that are reminiscent of African markets and accompanied by a poem by Sam Berkson that layers voices from the market to draw on its disjointed and surreal atmosphere.
Close Your Eyes
Close Your Eyes is a frenzied reworking of the accumulated archive of photographer Gareth McConnell. An onslaught of kaleidoscopic imagery fuses portraits he took of rave-goers in Ibiza with pictures he both shot and found of a number of key moments in recent British history, from the 1985 Battle of the Beanfield to the London Riots of 2011. Amongst this we find collected references to the Zen mystic Osho, whose people are said to have experimented with Ecstasy and taken it into clubs in Ibiza for the first time. This is a personal, political body of work–a frustrated meditation on the nature of human occurrence, the power of mass communion in it’s many forms, and the delirious experience of losing oneself to hedonism from the view of someone who saw it from within. As an object, the book is an immersive experience, galvanized with the same primal energy of the rave, it’s rapture and it’s ecstasy. Rythmn, Pulse, Rave, Repeat.
My family moved from Hong Kong to Los Angeles when I was sixteen. Those first years were difficult for an immigrant teenager due to language and culture shifts, and at times were overwhelming as I tried to find my place in this new world. From discovery, insight and serendipity, the American culture was slowly absorbed. More specific to So Cal, the beach architype is ingrained in the lifestyle, and I quickly learned that it was a place that provided comfort and inspiration to me as a young man. I now frequent the beach regularly as a place for relaxation and observation. With this series, Distant Memories, I capture the childhood that I could have experienced, those weekend forays to museums, outings to the waters edge, with family, friends and a picnic basket filled with the ingredients for a perfect day. Like finding shells on the shore, I am collecting visual memories. And while they might not be my memories, they allow me to imagine a childhood in a place I now call home.
At the age of 23, Tom Monaghan purchased a failing pizzeria in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Following the death of his father, Tom Monaghan spent half his childhood in a Catholic orphanage. After serving in the U.S. Marine Corps, he bought DomiNick’s to pay for his architectural studies at the University of Michigan. To do this, he and his brother—whom he later bought out of the business with a Volkswagen Beetle—took out a $900 loan. By the mid-1980s, through the innovation of a thermally superior delivery box and the creation of Domino’s Farms, he had built Domino’s into a thriving corporation. By the early ‘90s, he had amassed a sizeable fortune and was an American entrepreneurial legend. The once penniless orphan who gave up his dream of being an architect to pursue business purchased a private plane, amassed a collection of rare cars, and became the world’s leading collector of Frank Lloyd Wright memorabilia. After reading C.S. Lewis’ Mere Christianity, in particular his warnings against pride, “the essential vice,” Monaghan divested himself of many possessions. He sold the Detroit Tigers to business rival Mike Ilitch, owner of Little Caesars, and abandoned his dream home mid-construction in order to focus on a new goal: “to get as many people into heaven as possible.” He has since given large financial gifts to numerous educational and charitable Catholic organizations. In 1998, he sold his controlling stake in Domino’s Pizza to Bain Capital for a billion dollars. That same year, Monaghan founded Ave Maria College in two former elementary school buildings near the campus of Eastern Michigan University. Monaghan sought to build a full college campus for 1,500 students on his 280-acre farm, including a 25-story crucifix (with a 40-foot Christ) at the junction of two highways, but was denied zoning approval by the Ann Arbor Township. In 2003, Barron Collier Companies, one of Florida’s largest real estate developers, offered Monaghan nearly 1,000 acres—at no cost—to build his university in a rural area of southwest Florida. In return, they would develop the neighboring land for residential and commercial use. Monaghan invested millions into the speculative town, planning to recycle the profits from its development into a reincarnation of the college that he would call Ave Maria University. It would take a personal effort by then Florida Governor Jeb Bush to put in place the legislation that would allow Monaghan and his investors to develop Ave Maria. The town continues to grow slowly, but will most likely never meet its founders’ expectations. By early 2015, only 720 of the 11,000 homes planned for Ave Maria have been built—a mere 15 percent. And of those built, not all are occupied—in 2014, 138 households had moved in. 85 percent of the 100,000 square feet of retail space that encircles the giant, stone-faced 1,000-seat Ave Maria Oratory, partially designed by Monaghan, has been leased. Now 79 years old, Tom Monaghan divides his time between his home in Michigan and a house in Naples, thirty miles west of Ave Maria.
Down, Down, Baby
“‘Look how absurd I was when I was young’ forestalls cruel criticism, but it falsifies history…. Those emotions were real when we felt them. Why should we be more ashamed of them than of the indifference of old age?” — Graham Greene, A Sort of Life “Animals are not naked, because they are naked.” — Goodbye to Language, 2014 (dir. Jean-Luc Godard) “You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes; blood coming out of her…wherever.” — Donald Trump
In this project I have documented the final years of my Grandmother’s life as she was suffering from a degenerative brain disease. The images were made during moments of conversation, gesture, and experiences of death. The variety of photographic approaches towards the subjects are representative of a frantic need to record all aspects of my knowledge of her (whether performative or candid) in a hopes that these moments could be pieced together again, attempting to construct a more accurate portrait of how I would remember her. My Grandmother and I had a tumultuous relationship, never thoroughly understood, and missed connections of tastes and values flourished throughout our entire lives. Looking back on this project, the photographs reveal a deeper language we had been sharing for years, constituted of mutual vulnerability and trust, acted upon even in death.
And Another Thing...
“I personally feel that a box, far from being a dead end, is an entrance to another world. I don’t know to where, but an entrance to somewhere, some other world.”—Kobo Abe And Another Thing collates and recontextualises seven years of collage and studio ephemera into a publication that is, among other things, a meditation on the nature and physicality of the medium as well as an individual piece of work in its own right. Gerace takes on the role of both artist and sequencer and creates a looping, circuitous work that is equal parts book and artwork, collection and commentary. Throughout, Gerace continually draws the reader to questions of time and memory, in the form of the book and the deterioration and reinterpretation of printed matter, image-death subverted through actions undertaken upon objects, repeated incessantly, tiny squares building forms before being overtaken, over and over and over and over, again and again and again and again.
On The Periphery
On The Periphery explores the aesthetic and utilitarian effect of architecture in and around the greater Los Angeles area. Minimalistic in nature and inspired by abstract expressionism and graphic design, the images represent a departure from the day to day realities of Los Angeles’s cluttered landscape. The moments captured are fragments of a cityscape’s lifetime that are most often overlooked by an entire population concerned solely with reaching a destination. The result is an homage to ‘The City’, combined with a hidden desire to escape to another place or perhaps another time.
LAND STAR is my four-year photographic exploration along roads less traveled throughout the hinterlands of the American South. In 2014, I set out with a Polaroid Land Camera and a road map to make instant souvenirs of the place where I grew up and continue to live. LAND STAR is an attempt to capture the vanishing vernacular signage and architecture of the region. Part journey, sojourn or road trip, and part exercise in time travel, LAND STAR offers up forty images - fleeting glimpses that aspire to weave a non-linear visual narrative. This is a Southern Gothic tale of loss, isolation, and desolation - the side effects of modernity. For me, this work represents an escape to an alternate realm, a fantastical locale, a tactile memory of a perfect world saturated in color – a place that still exists within a parallel universe far from the complicated, hyper-digitized, and gentrified world of today.
Everything Is Regional
The title, taken from a poem by former US Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky about the area of New Jersey where both he and Haughey grew up, speaks to the vernacular interest and deep connection to place that the subject matter holds. The son of a union sign painter, Haughey’s interest in roadside architecture and signage began at an early age, and as a native of the Jersey Shore, he is greatly influenced by the seasonal economy and off-season vacancy of a tourist destination. Though many of the locales depicted were photographed during the unpopulated emptiness of the winter months and are devoid of people, the images exude a human presence from the not-so-distant past; people are present through their absence. Haughey draws inspiration from an array of artists that have used this landscape as the basis of some of their most important work, such as the writer John McPhee, architect Andrew Geller, and photographers Gregory Conniff and George Tice. His project Ebb Tide, which takes the midcentury modern motels of The Wildwoods as its subject, acts as a nucleus to Everything Is Regional, and is further discussed and contextualized by Adam Giles Ryan, Assistant Curator of Photography at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, in the introduction to the book.
“Anaesthesia is a lament of several voices, a symphony of the evil in us, cinematically edited screenshots from videos, an engagement with the media, an open criticism to war and terrorism, a declaration of neutrality, an act of rebellion to the ego, where one stands alone prevented to feel anything else beyond his own finitude. Nothing would be more painful than not suffering anymore, dropping the burden of sensations, withdrawing from living and bonding. In the lyricism of the agony of mind, in the longing for a break in the inner solitude, what is more ambiguous than the desire to feel others? When confronted with others, personal pleasure as much as personal pain become absolute and universal. What remains is the love for horror and the horror of love.”
“It is the first spark, a glimmer of assumptions, the shivering and the craving. Love arrives as nothing new, except every time it does, foolishly.” Empathy is an imaginative projection of the other, a psychological identification, not an emotional reaction. Starting from this assumption, and following the previous book Anaesthesia in which the concept of empathy is analysed as collective experience, The Harvest takes on stake the private realm, the most intimate experience with another, the act of sex and the act of love. In the unfolding of the process from falling to being in love, disguising the objectification of the other and the unbalanced power that occurs mutually in the couple, The Harvest is built like a play: the person who speaks, the person who acts, the person who experiences, and the reader, are interchangeable. The Harvest is the second chapter of an unfinished trilogy.
“Kagerou: the heat haze, a lake in the desert, decay heat powered by the nuclear radiation, invisible, pervasive. It was 12 March 2011. The day after Fukushima nuclear disaster, I woke up in a shrouded Tokyo: the cityscape looked blurred and twisted. Nobody else seemed to notice: for 37 million people it was business as usual. Compared to the visible devastation of the tsunami, the invisible hazard of contamination seemed to belong to another world. The ghostly exclusion zone surrounding Fukushima Daichii nuclear plant felt more real, the danger was showing its consequences. The nature was starting to reclaim the town. it felt like walking in a floating world painting, everything was silent. Two years later I had a beautiful son. With his mother, we are still wondering the effect of radiation while exposed in her womb.” In the wake of Fukushima Daiichi meltdown, Yusuke Takagi’s Kagerou faces the fears of the nuclear era, interweaving pregnancy and fatherhood in a transfigured Tokyo with the landscapes of the Zone and the portraits of people who decided not to leave. “Is the image of Kagerou just a illusion, or the nuclear heat haze was showing the true nature of things?” Life goes on, no matter whether you are in Tokyo, Yokohama or Fukushima, we are at the mercy of politics and fate”