August 23 to September 28, 2014 – Phoenix Art Museum
Doris and John Norton Gallery for the Center for Creative Photography

About this Exhibition

Earlier this year INFOCUS, the Photography Support Organization of Phoenix Art Museum, called photographers to send examples of their self-published photobooks. The purpose of the exhibition is to explore the range of ways that artists are using newly available commercial technologies in order to express themselves. A jury, made up of seven industry professionals (listed below), reviewed 271 submissions from 15 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Australia. The exhibition represents the 151 books they chose, as examples of the wide range of photobooks being produced today.

We asked for books of any subject including retrospective, project-based, souvenir albums, fictional narrative, exhibition catalogues, poetic, biographical, or children’s books, and welcomed collaborative or collective books in addition to those by a single author. We found that in a well-crafted book, the artist considers every element of the book’s design, and uses each to enhance the finished product. Among the selections are noteworthy selection of paper weight and surface; cover material; printing method and reproduction quality; font style, color and size; text placement and justification (centered, aligned to the right or left); endpaper and title page design; binding (spiral bound, hard bound, paperback); size and placement of the images; sequence of the images; and inclusion (or exclusion) of and placement of the caption information.

Read a few words from our curator, Rebecca Senf

From the earliest years of the medium’s history, photographers have embraced the book form as a way to present, organize and disseminate their work. Click here to read more / less »

Books allow photographers to expand their reach to a much larger audience and to control the presentation of their work. Publishing a body of work also increases prestige and permanence; by creating books, artists know that their printed volume, in libraries and private collections, will long outlive them. Within the art field, there exists a reverence for books, a reverence that acknowledges the care and attention that went in to producing them.


Rebecca Senf
Norton Family Curator

Publishing photographic books has rapidly changed over the last twenty years, with the impact of technology on book publishing and photography. Costs of paper, printing and binding have increased and profit margins for traditional publishers are narrowing, creating a risk-averse climate in which unknown artists have difficulty getting books published by existing presses. The bookstores where we once browsed and purchased books are being replaced by online retailers, which in turn, changes our patterns of buying and the way products are marketed. Furthermore, many types of reading (including news, correspondence, and recreational fiction) have moved away from sheets of paper and bound books to digital displays of various kinds.

Despite these massive shifts in how they are made, the desire to produce photographic books is only increasing. Young photographers want their artwork to be presented as a book, and photographic books continue to be produced, discussed, admired, coveted, collected, and sold.

“The Process and the Page: Developing Photographic Books,” on view at Phoenix Art Museum from March 29 to August 17, 2014, presented book-making materials from the archival collections of the Center for Creative Photography, to show how photographers have participated in the creation of their photographic books over the course of the last 100 years. Now, with the INFOCUS Juried Exhibition of Self-Published Photobooks, we can shed light on an important new phase in the story of photographic books – the ability of photographers world-wide to produce high-quality books of their work through self-publishing.

The Photographers and their Books

Listed below are all the photographers represented in the exhibition along with links to where each book can be purchased. Feel free to support these artists by adding favorites to your collection.

Nidaa Aboulhosn
To Build Itself Ruin or Wonder

Bobby Abrahamson
North Portland Polaroids

Bobby Abrahamson
The West Behind Us

Raymond Adams
America: Witnessed

Hannah Smith Allen
The Battle of Monmouth

Gera Artemova
Botanic Garden

Morgan Ashcom
Leviathan

Michael Ast
Trying to Find the Ocean

Bob Aufuldish
Dafen

Natalia Baluta
ПOTOM / AFTER A WHILE

Scott T. Baxter
100 Years 100 Ranchers

Steven Beckley, Kirk Crippens, Maureen Drenan, Eyaken Guilat, Ohm Phanphiroj, Ward Shortridge
Fresh AiR

Harvey Benge
CHINA STORY

Sara Bennett
Spirit on the Inside: Reflections on Doing Time with Judith Clark

Chris Bennett
Darkwood

George Berke
KIND OF BLUE: Sea • Sand • Sky along the Florida Panhandle

Rachel Boillot
Post Script

Julia Borissova
Running to the Edge

Carl Bower
Chica Barbie

Charlee Brodsky
Dogus Dramaticus

Suzette Bross
Commute

Karen Bucher
Interior Nature

Jesse Butcher
Hostiles

Tristan Cai
Physical Realities of Death: A memoir of Toivo Laukkannen

Bob Carey
Ballerina

Elizabeth Chiles
The flower and the bloom

Goseong Choi
Umma

Barbara Ciurej and Lindsay Lochman
Processed Views: Surveying the Industrial Landscape

R. Clarke-davis
oi gente

Serge Clement
au Passage Patience

Serge Clement
N á Y

Caleb Cole
Other People's Clothes

Sebastian Collett
TESSERACT

Jane Critchlow
Some of My Best Friends: A White Woman's Journey into Racial Profiling

Michael J. Dalton II
The Great Falls

D. Bryon Darby
Seeking The Source: Water in The Desert

Rachael Deeley
Looking Backward

Dennis DeHart
Land of the Stratus

Francois Deschamps
Drone / 1, 2, 3

Francois Deschamps
Mali Photo

Barbara A. Diener
Sehnsucht

Empty Stretch
Petty Thieves Four: Coast to Coast

Dana Fritz
Terraria Gigantica: The World Under Glass

Yoshikatsu Fujii
Red String

Lucia Gillard
Venice in Winter

Joshua Goodrich
Shelved

Amanda Hankerson
The Hankersons

Brian Harmon
The fear of forgetting: vol 1

Miki Hasegawa
THE PATH OF MILLION PENS

Craig Hickman
OXIDE

Thomas Locke Hobbs
Ochava Solstice

Tama Hochbaum
A Week in Paris

Julee Holcombe
Made in Chimerica

Art Holeman
Perugia, Italy

Joseph O. Holmes
The 2013 Annual

Barbara Houghton
The Wolf at the Door

Yojiro Imasaka
USA -Untitled Scapes of America-

Sara Jarvie
O is for Old Man of the Andes

Thilde Jensen
The Canaries

Tom M. Johnson
Lakewood: a Photographic Journal of a Sacred American Suburb

Siri Kaur
Know Me for the First Time

Eileen Kennedy
Staying On

Garon Kiesel
I Didn't Picture This

Heidi Kirkpatrick
Heidi Kirkpatrick: Lost and Found

Karen Klein
Broken Circle - Children of Divorce and Separation

Steffi Klenz
Polo bound for Passaic

Marie-Luise Klotz
Goldwert. The Collapse of an Indicator Species

Lewis Koch
Twentyone Yellowstone Parking Lots

Nina Korhonen
La Cuerda

Daniel Kramer
Cuban Fire

Patricia Lay-Dorsey
Falling Into Place

William LeGoullon and
Peter Bugg (co-author)
Embedded

William LeGoullon
99

Aleya Lehmann Bench
Pageant Play

Linda Lindroth
Trickster in Flatland

Mark Lipczynski
I Speak In Pictures

Clay Lipsky
In Dark Light

Clay Lipsky
Atomic Overlook

Michael Loderstedt
Groveland Utopia

Adam J. Long
Kenwood Avenue

Sara Macel
May the Road Rise to Meet You

John MacLean
New Colour Guide

Andy Mattern
Driven Snow

Paula McCartney
Book of Trees, Both Native and Introduced

Paula McCartney
On Thin Ice, In a Blizzard

Neil A. Miller
Morgan Exploration - A photographer’s journey through an automotive tradition

Charles Mintz
Precious Objects

Charles Mintz
The Album Project

Kevin J. Miyazaki
A Guide to Modern Camp Homes: 10 New Models & Plans for Persons of Japanese Ancestry

Bruce Morton
FORGOTTONIA

Bruce Myren
The View Home

Bea Nettles
Stone Turner: Card Deck

Laura Noel
Law & Order Gets Me Through the Night

Laura Noel
Killing The Day, Volumes 1-4

Kelly Novak
Relations

Lou Oates
My Quirky Family Album

Ochoa Community Magnet School students with Marisa McClure
amigos en el jardin...friends in the garden

Andreas Oetker-Kast
looking for wonderland

Joseph D.R. OLeary
Of Beards and Men

Mike Osborne
Monopoly

Luis Palacios Kaim, Patricia Lagarde, Jimena Orozco
General León 51

Louie Palu
Mira Mexico

Nathan Pearce
Midwest Dirt

Mark Peterman
The Things That Affect Our Lives Everyday

Mimi Plumb
Dark Days

Julia Polunina-But
Barricade

Marisa Portolese
Belle de Jour II

Betty Press and Philippa Stannard
La Dolce Vista

Jane Levy Reed
Where Dreams Cross

Florian Reischauer
Pieces of Berlin 2009 - 2013

Tamara Reynolds
Southern Route

Erika Ritzel
Changing Hands

Jeff Rogers
Kentucky Wide: Beauty of the Bluegrass

Jeremy Rowe
Arizona Stereographs 1860 - 1930

Becki Rutta
I'm no literary giant

Al Saulso
FADEAWAY CRAYMAGAZINE #1

Ben Schonberger
Beautiful Pig

Pablo Serrano-Otero
Vernacular Puerto Rico

Nicolo Sertorio
Rest Areas of the Southwest

Tate Shaw
The Ground

Rebecca Sittler
All the Presidents’ Men

Rick Soloway
The Irwin Studio Portrait Archive: Early 1900s Cochise County

Tabitha Soren
RUNNING

Doug Spowart
Proposal for New Australian Landforms

Cheryle St. Onge
Natural Collections

John Steck Jr.
In Search of Lakes

Fabrice Strippoli
Dark City

Luke Strosnider
I Wish You Where Here

Jaroslaw Studencki
Sometimes I say Look when I mean to say Walk

Kathy Sherman Suder
Underground: London•Tokyo•New York

Samantha Sutcliffe
Selected Works 2012-2014

Jordan Swartz
I'm Alright to Drive

Dan R . Talley
The Ineffable Conversation (1974-2012)

Lex Thompson
DEER BLIND

Spencer Tunick
European Installations

Paul Turounet
Tierra Brava

William Karl Valentine
Alphaville – Arizona State University in the 1980’s

Corine Vermeulen
Obscura Primavera

Burkhard von Harder
Ukrainian Cold War Negatives

Dylan Vitone
pittsburgh project

Ira Wagner
Superior Apartments

Ellen Wallenstein
Respecting My Elders

Harvey Wang
Adam Purple & The Garden of Eden

Hsin Wang
De-Selfing

M. Earl Williams
26 Gasoline Stations In Grand Theft Auto V

William Earle Williams
A Stirring Song Sung Heroic: African Americans from Slavery to Freedom, 1619 to 1865

Tara Wray
Come Again When You Can't Stay So Long

Marc Yankus
The Point of Secret

Ewa Monika Zebrowski
Finding Wyeth

Philip Zimmermann
Sanctus Sonorensis

Jani Zubkovs
This Is Not A Dark Ride

 

 

The Jury

The photobooks in this exhibition were selected by:


Top row: Mary Virginia Swanson, Darius Himes, Becky Senf, Jennifer Barnella Bottom row: Abigail Nersesian, Larissa Leclair, Joshua Chuang

Abigail Nersesian
Librarian, Phoenix Art Museum
Jennifer Barnella
Retail Sales Manager, Phoenix Art Museum
Joshua Chuang
Chief Curator, Center for Creative Photography
Becky Senf
Norton Family Curator, Center for Creative Photography and Phoenix Art Museum
Mary Virginia Swanson
Co-author, Publish Your Photography Book
Darius Himes
Co-author, Publish Your Photography Book
Larissa Leclair
Founder, Indie Photobook Library

This exhibition was inspired by the Cleveland Museum of Art’s DIY: Photographers and Books

(return to About this Exhibition)

 


Reading and Resources

Art Intersection (Gilbert, AZ) – Art Intersection is a community arts space that offers studio space, workshops and master classes to artists working within photography and related media. In late September, Art Intersection will host a self-publishing workshop titled “Publish Your Photo Book.” A calendar of upcoming events can be found at artintersection.com; details on the workshop are here.

Indie Photobook Library (Washington, D.C.)– An archive of independently published and distributed photobooks, zines, exhibition catalogues, and more, founded by Larissa Leclair, one of the INFOCUS Self-published Photobooks jurors. The Independent Photobook Library showcases its collection through pop-up and feature-length shows, lectures, conferences, and articles, and lends works from its collection to museums and institutions. More info and a schedule of upcoming events available on the iPL’s website, indiephotobooklibrary.org

Visual Studies Workshop (Rochester, NY)– The Visual Studies Workshop offers residencies and educational programs, houses a sizeable collection, publishes the bi-monthly photo journal Afterimage, and maintains VSW Press, which has published over 450 artists’ books to date. The VSW hosts the bi-annual Photo-Bookworks Symposium, the next installment of which is slated for Summer 2016. They will host the second annual Pub Fair, a unique market showcasing book artists, photographers, and independent publishers, on September 13th from noon to 7:00 PM. More information is available at vsw.org.

Center for Book Arts (New York, NY)– In addition to offering instruction in traditional bookmaking techniques, including binding, papermaking, and letterpress printing, the Center for Book Arts hosts talks and workshops featuring a variety of artists, independent publishers and distributors. The center houses a collection of over 2,000 artists’ books. For a full schedule of events, visit www.centerforbookarts.org.

Printed Matter (New York, NY) – A non-profit dedicated to the promotion, proliferation, and dissemination of artists’ books, Printed Matter boasts an inventory of nearly 38,000 titles by over 27,000 artists. They sell and circulate works through a number of distribution networks, including their Chelsea storefront and their online catalogue. Printed Matter organizes annual Art Book Fairs in New York and L.A. to showcase and celebrate the independent and DIY publishing community. The New York Art Book Fair will be held September 26th – 28th at MOMA PS1; the L.A. Art Book Fair takes place January 31st – February 2nd at the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA. More information at printedmatter.org; laartbookfair.net; and nyartbookfair.com.

Publish Your Photography Book, Darius D. Himes and Mary Virginia Swanson, ©2011, Princeton Architectural Press –Publish Your Photography Book, co-authored by Darius D. Himes and Mary Virgina Swanson, two of the INFOCUS Self-published Photobooks jurors, offers a comprehensive and illustrated view of the publishing landscape, covering everything from marketing to the production process. Boasting case studies, interviews, and appendices listing publishers, resources, and events, the volume deserves a place in the library of any photographer considering self-publishing. It is available through Amazon, or at publishyourphotographybook.com.

DIY: Photographers and Books, Barbara Tannenbaum, Cleveland: Cleveland Art Museum, 2012. Catalogue of the first museum exhibition to feature self-published photobooks, with excellent discussion of the self-publishing phenomenon. Available for purchase on Blurb.

The Photobook: A History, Vol. 1-3, Martin Parr and Gerry Badger, London and New York: Phaidon, 2004, 2006 and 2014. An encyclopedic look at the history of the photographic book.