As a collector of vintage photography with a penchant for the curious, horrific, and sometimes downright traumatic, it is no surprise that I gravitated to Ossian Brown‘s book Haunted Air published by Jonathan Cape in 2011. There also appears to be a new 2022 edition available. I am reviewing the book now as it […]
“I have assumed this focus on the found vernacular to be American in nature. However, the details of national ownership is missing apart from the rise of American modernism or the focus on its anti-thesis, namely quaint small town America advertising often hand painted and rough” It is somehow impossible not to mention […]
“The Transparencies book published by MACK is also significant in its design, the essay within and sequence of the work, which is chapterized by annual progressions through the 70’s American dream in banal (good word, word of goodness) detail” It is not often that a re-examination of the periphery of a significant […]
“Every image poses the question of American identity not just from the standpoint of our present reality, but from the playbook of iconic images – most of them from the twentieth century – that make up the history of American photography.”
“I proceed in conversation with the camera, with other photographs, with other photographers, I forget about what writing can do, I think about what photography can do.”
History generally presents itself to the future in visual terms that signify the distance between the two points of time from its creation and its re-purposing and its re-examination. The fallacy in photographic terms of historical representation and its distribution of intent are intertwined between reason and audience over the passing of linear […]
“Reading through them, I realised that the best ones seemed to create a kind of mental-image in my mind’s eye – which due to the tone of the text often took the form of a very deadpan, monotone, and even monochrome photograph of a little scene in small-town America; I was imagining a very straightforward picture made by Walker Evans or Lee Friedlander or Diane Arbus or others, of four dogs sitting on top of a car, or a guy standing next to a tree in the middle of the afternoon with bloody knuckles…”
“The facades of shops, the techno-utopias of the call centers or mobile phone sales point bleed into boarded-up strip mall windows and the implications of a plastic and temporary commercial culture begin to appear”(BF).
‘While Ruwedel’s concise framing draws attention to the resemblance between one house and the next, it also compels us to reflect on the singular defeats that they portray, each one a small chip out of the American dream.’
“The idea of art and politics co-existing is no more or less deeply problematic than the idea of them being separate. But nobody said it was going to be a picnic.”
“My work in the landscape is ultimately about human culture, not about nature. I always think of landscape as historical, or historicized; as not existing outside of history.”
“You have to be prepared to look in the ‘low’ places in our visual culture as well as the ‘high’. You have to be a rag picker as much as a connoisseur”.