HAPPY NEW YEAR: From Around The World!!!

Paris in December, Eiffel Tower, 2011

Bon Noel from Paris

Happy New Year!!! On the Spanish Steps, Rome, 2011
Photograph © Tod Papageorge

Merry, Merry!!! Santa in Venice, California, 2011
Photograph © Tod Papageorge

Christmas Day. Khyongla Rato Rinpoche, New Delhi, 2011
Photograph © Nicholas Vreeland

Christmas Morning, 2011. First Light over the Rincon Mountains, Tucson
Photograph © Mary Virginia Swanson

Happy Dreams For The Future
Deer Carved by Tokushige, Heart Mountain, Wyoming, 2011
Photograph ©Hiroshi Watanabe

Best wishes to friends near and far,
and hope that your holiday season is filled with joy!


DARIUS HIMES 2011: Publish Your Photography Book + Radius Books

Publish Your Photography Book
By Darius D. Himes and Mary Virginia Swanson

Princeton Architectural Press, 2011


Assistant Director of Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco
Co-founder of Radius Books

"I have been lucky enough to work with things I'm passionate about, two of the deepest of which are photography and books. This past year has been extremely challenging, rewarding and life-changing in many ways, and it is primarily because of these passions. All of the books that I want to mention are ones that I worked on intimately during the past year. They truly are my favorites! I've been blessed with being able to work on projects and with artists whose work I admire immensely and about whom I care deeply. First and foremost was Publish Your Photography Book (Princeton Architectural Press, 2011), the book I coauthored with Mary Virginia Swanson, the hardest working gal in showbiz :) This project consumed my free hours for the better part of 4 years and was the culmination of so many wonderful conversations with photographers, publishers, editors and designers around the world. I'm immensely proud of it as a publication. And it was designed and art directed by two amazing men: David Chickey and Masumi Shibata (from the Radius Books team)."

"Secondly, each of the photography books I worked on at Radius Books this year were truly amazing projects. I can't emphasize how lucky I have been to work with artists whose visions lift the mind and spirit and who are so dedicated to their work. They include Janelle Lynch's Los Jardines de Mexico, Gay Block's About Love, Shai Kremer's Fallen Empires, Michael Light's LA Day/LA Night, Robert Benjamin's Notes From a Quiet Life, Colleen Plumb's Animals Are Outside Today, Alec Soth and John Gossage's The Auckland Project, Mark Klett and William Fox's The Half-Life of History, and Ralph Eugene Meatyard's Dolls and Masks. There is no way to choose a favorite out of these; all of them are unique, arresting projects and objects that would sit well on any shelf, public or private." –Darius Himes

Mark Klett and William Fox's The Half-Life of History:
The Atomic Bomb and Wendover Air Base



Friends and colleagues each contributed their unique perspectives
The Best Photography Books of 2011

Subway, Photographs by Bruce Davidson. Aperture, 2011
Intro by Fred Brathwaite. Text by Bruce Davidson
Afterword by Henry Geldzahler

Curator and Visuals Editor at The New Yorker Magazine for 15 years

"Two books, both probably because I have been loving their photography for such a long time. One a classic, one just published. Bruce Davidson's, Subway, pictures so strong, they possess me and are burned into my memory, then as now. And Alex Webb's, The Suffering of Light, poetry in pictures, the light & the dark of life captured by a photographer with a unique vision & daring composition."

From Uncertain To Blue, University Of Texas Press, Austin, 2011
Photographs by Keith Carter. Introduction by Horton Foote

"My choice is the University of Texas Press's re-envisioned new publication of Keith Carter's "From Uncertain to Blue." Nearly 25 years after the publication of Carter's first book, the entire project has been re-visited and re-designed with a new essay by Keith Carter and new notations by his wife Pat."

Paradise, TX, 1988. Photograph © Keith Carter

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Photograph (c) Rinko Kawauchi

"I was introduced to Rinko Kawauchi's work by filmmaker/photographer pal John Decker. I love this book, for it's unexpected structure and deceptively simple presentation. I find her images and elegant palette a pure, clean sugar high – just gossamer and considered. This book makes me smile and I can feel the colors long after I have set it down."

Poems by Tom Waits. University of Texas Press, 2011

"I confess being partial to this work having had the privilege of seeing the prints before the book. I have long admired the confident grace in Michael O'Brien's portraits, how they invite conversations in my mind with his subjects. When I pick this up I spend a lot of time looking at each page, never quickly – the work keeps you. I have heard rumblings that Jace Graf at Cloverleaf Studio & Press will soon produce a wicked, boxed limited-edition from the first printing, I want one."
FAIRGROUNDS | Cloverleaf Press, Austin

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Tooth For An Eye, Photographs by Deborah Luster
Twin Palms Publishers, Santa Fe, 2011

Lead-blogger for Wired.com's Raw File.
Author of Prison Photography on the Road.

Pete is currently on a 12-week journalism road-trip across America. He chose Deborah Luster's A Tooth For An Eye: A Chorography of Violence in Orleans Parish. "Luster explores the city in a new way, creating a compelling portrait in the form of a photographic archive of contemporary and historic homicide sites. Following on from her first book, Prisoners of Louisiana, Tooth for an Eye explores the themes of loss and remembrance in a series of tondo photographs that offer an opportunity for the viewer to enter deeper into the idea of the city, a place where life and death coexist, neither free of the other’s influence."

Read Pete's Blogpost: ‘ONE BIG SELF’ by Deborah Luster: “You Are An Invisible Population. What Do You Want To Say To The World? Pete Brook, Prison Photography on the Road.

A unique record of Louisiana's prison population

The Place We Live, a Retrospective Selection of Photographs, 1964-2009
Photographs by Robert Adams. Yale University Press, 2011

Owner/Director, Kopeikin Gallery, Los Angeles, Ca

"Putting my friend Bill Hunt’s opus aside because I love him so...Robert Adams trilogy: The Place We Live, a Retrospective Selection of Photographs, 1964-2009."–Paul Kopeikin

Old-growth stump, Coos County, Oregon, 1999–2003
Photograph © Robert Adams

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By LaNola Kathleen Stone, Focal Press, 2011

Chair, MPS Digital Photography Dept, School of Visual Arts
Photographer and Author

Photographing Childhood: The Image and the Memory (Focal Press, 2011) by LaNola Kathleen Stone is thoughtful, inspiring, and unexpected. The book features an historical homage; an insightful timeline of childhood; useful information on lighting and image management; and most importantly highlights a wide variety of contemporary photographers and photographic approaches to frame and focus on the fleeting moments of childhood. Smart, beautiful and poignant!

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Photograph (c) Donald Weber

Manager, photo-eye's Book Division for over 14 years
Independent writer + curator for photo-related projects

Donald Weber's Interrogations illustrates Weber's love for this temporary home of the ex-Soviet Union and the bureaucracies and inequalities that still exist and often impede "progress". It is presented in three chapters: Prologue, which shows some images of daily life; Interrogations, portraits of those confused, distressed and scared citizens being questioned by the authorities; and finishes with Epilogue by Larry Frolick and Donald Weber, text which further illustrates Frolick and Weber's love for the Russian citizens and their role in this project: "letting the denied tell their stories through you." The book is wrapped in a textured printed paper which mimics one of the wallpapers of the interrogation rooms and is stitched with one thread in the center. The uncut text block allows a play on design, the "creep" extends way beyond the cover. This element is clever design, but feels as though it may also be commentary on the character of those unseen in the second section. It is finished with a cardboard slipcase. So simple, but so intense.

Last year, Graciela Iturbide was able to actualize a long-awaited project with work she produced in Mexico City between 1974 and 2009 and Rome in 2007. Iturbide's images make Rome feel like Mexico. The book is a small perfect bound object printed on a warm paper and wrapped in gray cover with simple adhesive labels that Iturbide bought in Bolivia adorning the exterior of the back and front covers. Each label displays the title and photographer's name written with the photographer's hand. With her multiple personal touches, each book a unique object. This book is modest, unassuming and sweet.

Editorial RM, 2011

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Anneke van Veen "The First Photographers of Amsterdam 1845-1875"
Bussum: Thoth publishers, 2010

Luminous-Lint, An Online History of Photography

I enjoy books that take me into areas of photography that I've not seen before and The First Photographers of Amsterdam 1845-1875 is a catalog of the exhibition with the same name held at the Amsterdam City Archives 1 April - 27 June 2010. There are many surprises here with documentary series of lock construction, a pink tea set decorated with photographs and the waxed paper negatives of Benjamin Brecknell Turner. Not an obvious choice but one I'll return to.

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A few of my choices for
The Best Photography Books of 2011
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The Unseen Eye: Photographs from the Unconscious
Aperture, 2011

The Unseen Eye: Photographs from the W.M. Hunt Collection
George Eastman House, Rochester, New York to Feb. 19, 2012

"When I turned 50, I decided my life’s mission would be to promote the pleasure of photography." William Hunt, collector, curator, consultant, writer, teacher... Read La Lettre's Interview with WM. Hunt

"The Unseen Eye: Photographs from the Unconscious presents a wonderfully idiosyncratic and compelling collection of photographs assembled around a particular theme: in each image, the gaze of the subject is averted, the face obscured or the eyes firmly closed. The pictures present a catalog of anti-portraiture, characterized at first glance by what its subjects conceal, not by what the camera reveals. Amassed over the course of thirty years by New York collector W. M. Hunt, the collection includes works by masters such as Richard Avedon, Diane Arbus, Imogen Cunningham, William Klein, Robert Mapplethorpe, and Robert Frank as well as lesser-known artists and vernacular images." –Aperture

Eyewitness. Hungarian Photography in the Twentieth Century
Brassaï, Capa, Kertész, Moholy-Nagy, Munkácsi
Royal Academy Publications, 2011

"At a crucial moment between two world wars, five men changed the face of photojournalism and art photography, and inspired the world. With their groundbreaking shots, Brassaï, Capa, Kertész, Moholy-Nagy, and Munkásci radically redefined photographic practice and theory, ushering in the modern era." Publisher's Description

"The elusive Vivian Maier has left us many clues and a diary of over 100,000 negatives that reflect her time and her place. The quiet observer,the plain spoken no non-sense woman, the obsessive photo taker, the nanny and mysterious legend in the making. There are a lot of good images revealed in these books all leading us to learn a little more from this sphinx like creature" John A. Bennette, Curator of Maier's first New York exhibition, "Vivian Maier, Photographer," at the Hearst Gallery, New York

In 2011, Aperture released Diane Arbus: A Chronology and newly reissued Diane Arbus: An Aperture Monograph and Untitled: Diane Arbus on the fortieth anniversary of the original publication.

You and I. Photographs by Ryan McGinley
Twin Palms, 2011

"Following in the footsteps of Allen Ginsberg and his "Snapshot Poetics," McGinley turned his lens on the bodies and pastimes of his Lower East Side milieu, adding another generation to the History of Photography. This work, from the first years of this century, has given way to Ryan’s subjects running through and falling out of otherworldly utopian landscapes, caverns, forests and deserts; worlds away from the Chinatown tenements he still calls home."–Jack Woody, Twin Palms Publisher

Bordeaux Series. Photographs by Mona Kuhn
Steidl, 2011

Working with preeminent photography publisher, Gerhard Steidl, on her newly released Bordeaux Series, Kuhn said, “The thing is, I only have really wonderful things to say about Gerhard. He is indeed a genius of publishing.”–Mona Kuhn

Read Mona Kuhn's Interview

Moby: Destroyed
Damiani, 2011

“When I play music, I’m just exclusively focused on the music. When I’m taking photographs, I’m exclusively focusing on that. There’s not a lot of interdisciplinary stuff going on in my head.”– Moby

Read Moby's Interview

Core Curriculum: Writings on Photography is a collection of essays, reviews and lectures by Tod Papageorge, Photographer and Walker Evans Professor of Photography at the Yale University School of Art. Papageorge discusses with deep critical insight are Eugène Atget, Brassaï, Robert Frank (with Walker Evans), Robert Adams and his close friend Garry Winogrand.

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Sylvia Plachy's Out of the Corner of My Eye: de reojo, Goings On About Town

Although Sylvia Plachy didn't publish a book in 2011, her work remains timeless. Plachy, a Hungarian/American photographer, was born in Budapest, Hungary in 1943. Her family moved to New York City due to the Hungarian Revolution where she met photographer Andre Kertesz. Plachy's photo essays and portraits have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The Village Voice, The New Yorker, Granta, Artforum, Fortune, and everywhere else. They have been exhibited in galleries and museums in Berlin, Budapest, Chicago, Minneapolis, New York, Paris and Tokyo. Her book, Self Portrait with Cows Going Home (2005), is a personal history of Central Europe with photographs and text, received a Golden Light Award for Best Book in 2004. In 2009, she received the Dr. Erich Salomon Preis in Berlin for Lifetime Achievement in Photojournalism. This January 2012, Plachy and Jeff Liao will be exhibiting Panoramic Photographs of New York City when The South Street Seaport Museum reopens.



Snowday, 2010
© Julie Blackmon

Sharpie, 2011
Photograph © Julie Blackmon

Night Movie, 2011
Photograph © Julie Blackmon

Airstream, 2011
Photograph © Julie Blackmon

The Dutch proverb "a Jan Steen household" originated in the 17th century and is used today to refer to a home in disarray, full of rowdy children and boisterous family gatherings.
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JULIE BLACKMON is the oldest of nine children and now the mother of three. Her photographs have been honored with numerous awards since she began exhibiting, including American Photo Emerging Artists 2008, first prize from CENTER/Santa Fe Center for Photography Project Competition, and PDN's 30, among many others.

DOMESTIC VACATIONS: "The paintings of Steen, along with those of other Dutch and Flemish genre painters, helped inspire this body of work. As Steen’s personal narratives of family life depicted nearly 400 yrs. ago, the conflation of art and life is an area I have explored in photographing the everyday life of my family and the lives of my sisters and their families at home. These images are both fictional and auto-biographical, and reflect not only our lives today and as children growing up in a large family, but also move beyond the documentary to explore the fantastic elements of our everyday lives, both imagined and real...read more

Julie Blackmon's Domestic Vacations
New Work at Photo-eye Gallery