The PhotoBook

January 15, 2016

LA Art Book Fair – coming soon to SoCal

The LA Art Book Fair will again be at the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA and will be another delightful maze of rooms with amazing displays of photobook and zines. This event has always been punctuated with some wonderful finds for me.

From Printed Matter:

Printed Matter presents the fourth annual LA Art Book Fair, from February 12 through 14, 2016, at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA, Downtown LA. A ticketed preview will take place on Thursday, February 11, 6-9PM.

Free (another aspect of this event that I love) and open to the public, Printed Matter’s LA Art Book Fair is a (very) unique event for artists’ books, catalogs, monographs, periodicals, and zines presented by more than 300 presses, antiquarians, artists, and independent publishers from over 20 countries.

The LA Art Book Fair is the companion fair to the NY Art Book Fair, held every fall in New York City. Over 35,000 artists, book buyers, collectors, dealers, curators, independent publishers, and other enthusiasts attended the NY Art Book Fair in 2015.

A full list of this year’s exhibitors can be found here.

Highly recommended for those who love photobooks and zines on living (or visiting) the Left Coast.

Cheers!

August 6, 2015

A change in my photobook commentaries

Dragana_Jursic-YU_The_Lost_Country_2

Photograph copyright Dragana Jursic 2015 (YU The Lost Country)

I have been contemplating some changes to this blog for a while now, due to a combination of factors. First is the large quantity of photobooks that are being published at an almost dizzying rate since I started this blog in 2008. Second is the growing quantity of high quality, creative and delightful contemporary photobooks and self-published artists books. At times I am overwhelmed with wonderful photobooks, and while taking the necessary to spend time to enjoy each of these, this precludes having the time to writing about them. Yet these great books deserve a shout out to the photographic book community at large to increase the awareness, part of the purpose of this blog.

Second half of this is the time that I have available to write about photobooks is shared with time I can spend on my personal photographic projects and photobooks (yes, I do have a day job that can be equally demanding). Thus the more time I spend with the books of others, the less time I have to spend on developing my own. Regretfully this is a balancing act and one that I have not been too good at with both parts suffering as of late.

Now here is the thing, I really enjoy creative photobooks, so I will continue to collect. Second, I am a photo-blogger so I will continue to write about photobooks. Thus I am going to try using my Facebook format on this blog for a while to provide a more concise shout out about the books I like. You should see more book shout outs and a lot more often that before. That in turn should allow me some guilt-free time to work on my own photographic projects. nice!

So let’s see how this works for a while.

Cheers!

January 27, 2015

Printed Matter’s 2015 LA Art Book Fair

Printed_Matter_2015_LA_Art_Book_Fair_flyer

Printed Matter’s (2015) LA Art Book Fair

This coming weekend on the Left Coast is what is becoming an annual event; Printed Matter’s LA Art Book Fair which will take place again at the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA.

As I have written about the past (2014) LA Art Book Fairs taking place at MOCA, this building is a maze of rooms, small hidden rooms, medium size display areas and a huge room usually reserved for the Zine world. A ton of books, magazines, zines that are new and old (“collectibles”) that can overwhelm the senses. Fortunately the food trucks out the front doors can provide sustenance to help you endure. In past years there was a section reserved for photobooks up on the mezzanine, but guessing there will be spot somewhere.

Schedule:

Preview Thursday 29th January, 6-9pm
Friday January 30th, 12–7pm
Saturday January 31st, 11-7pm
Sunday February 1st, 11-6pm

Also nice about this event: FREE Admission!

Cheers!

December 19, 2014

Interesting Photobooks for 2014

My interesting Photobooks of 2014

For those who follow my posts already know that I am a strong believer that anyone who has the endurance, determination and guts to publish their photobook deserves a strong pat on the back. You are all winners! The following photobooks have that little something extra, which may be exceeding hard to define or explain, but these photographers, usually in cahoots with a great (if not brilliant) book designer and backed by a diligent printer and bindary team, stand out.

Enjoy!

Laia Abril – The Epilogue, published by Dewi Lewis Publishing (Also selected for my list published in Emaho magazine)

Roger Ballen – Asylum Of The Birds, Thames & Hudson

Julia Borissova – Running to the Edge, Self-published (Also selected for my list published in Emaho magazine)

Jan Brykczynski – Boiko, self-published

Alejandro Cartagena – Carpoolers, self-published

Laura Curran – Lots of Cake!, self-published

Carolyn Drake – Wild Pigeon, self-published

Michelle Frankfurter – Destino, published by FotoEvidence

Robin Maddock – III, published by Trolley Books

Paula McCartney – A Field Guide to Snow and Ice, published by Silas Finch (Also selected for my list published in Emaho magazine)

Kate Nolan – Neither, self-published (Also selected for my list published in Emaho magazine)

Bryan Schutmaat & Ashlyn Davis – Islands of the Blest, published by Silas Finch

Matej Sitar – Morning Sun, self-published (his imprint)

Gytis Skudzinskas – Albumas, published by Nerutina

Ed Templeton – Random & Pointless, Deadbeat Club Press (#19) (Also selected for my list published in Emaho magazine)

Hiroshi Watanabe – The Day the Dam Collapses, published by Daylight Books & Tosei-sha Publishing, Ltd, 2014 (as a note about potential conflicts, I was the Text Editor for Watanabe’s book)

This list of photobooks as I hope you noted are in alphabetical order by last name, so please do not read into whose name/photobook is first or last. Not all of these photobooks have been reviewed yet, but I should have the missing reviews published soon ;- )

Thanks to all of you for your on-going support this past year and I am eagerly looking forward to the creative endeavors or 2015.

Cheers!!

The photobook covers are as follows:

Laia_Abril-The_Epilogue_cover

Laia AbrilThe Epilogue

Roger_Ballen-Asylum_Of_The_Birds_cover

Roger Ballen – Asylum Of The Birds

Julia_Borissova-Running_to_the_Edge_book_cover_n_slip_cover

Julia BorissovaRunning to the Edge

Jan_Brykczynski-Boiko_cover

Jan Brykczynski – Boiko

Alejandro_Cartagena-Carpoolers_cover

Alejandro Cartagena – Carpoolers

Laura_Curran-Lots_of_Cake!_cover

Laura Curran – Lots of Cake!

Carolyn_Drake–Wild_Pigeon_cover

Carolyn Drake – Wild Pigeon

Michelle_Frankfurter-Destino_cover

Michelle Frankfurter – Destino

Robin_Maddock-III_cover

Robin Maddock – III

Paula_McCartney-A_Field_Guide_to_Snow_and_Ice_cover

Paula McCartneyA Guide to Snow and Ice

Kate_Nolan_Neither_cover

Kate Nolan – Neither

Bryan_Schutmaat_&_Ashlyn_Davis-Islands_of_the_Blest_cover

Bryan Schutmaat & Ashlyn Davis – Islands of the Blest

Matej_Sitar-Morning_Sun_cover

Matej Sitar – Morning Sun

Gytis_Skudzinskas-Albumas_cover

Gytis Skudzinskas – Albumas

Ed_Templeton-Random_&_Pointless_cover

Ed Templeton – Random & Pointless, Deadbeat Club Press (#19)

Hiroshi_Watanabe-The_Day_The_Dam_Collapses_cover

Hiroshi Watanabe – The Day the Dam Collapses, published by Daylight Books & Tosei-sha Publishing, Ltd, 2014

November 12, 2014

Photobook events

Filed under: Photo Book Discussions, Photo Book NEWS, Photo Books — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 4:56 pm

This is just a quick shout out about some current and pending photobook events. These are always great opportunities to hold, see, compare and purchase photobooks. It can also be a slight bit overwhelming, so give yourself plenty of time, which is good advice that I need to take myself. Also, for some popular book stands, the crowds can get pretty dense, which does not lead to good opportunities to examine popular titles.

There are three interesting photobook events occurring in Paris (France) later this week. I am guessing if these were events you were planning to attend, you are already well on your way! Which is of course: Paris Photo, OFFPRINT and Photobook Fest. Regretfully all are located at different venues, but not that far apart as the Paris Metro is great way to get around.

If you missed last month’s Art Book Fair (hosted by Printed Matter) in NYC, you will have another opportunity when this event occurs in LA at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA next January 30 – Feb 1, 2015. This will be the third year for the LA version and again at MOCA, which is not a bad venue but can be a confusing facility with all of its nooks and crannies to hide the various exhibitors.

Also looking ahead is Paris Photo LA, a SoCal version of Paris Photo. Similar to Paris, this huge LA event draws a really big crowd, thus the spin-offs such as the Photobook Independent in conjunction with Photo Independent located literally across the street from Paris Photo LA at the Raleigh Studios in Hollywood. Walking a film/TV sound stage backlot is almost worth the cost of admission! The dates are May 1-3, 2014. For the Photobook Independent, this is an opportunity for self-published photographers and Indie publishers to have an opportunity to show their photobooks and a great opportunity to meet and discuss directly with the authors. (Note: the cost to rent a half or full table for Photobook Independtent is fairly reasonable if you are interested in getting your photobook(s) in front of a large audience – I know that I am considering this option!)

Cheers!

September 29, 2014

World PhotoBook Day > October 14th

Filed under: Photo Book NEWS, Photo Books — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 8:07 pm

Aalphabet_covers_2012-2014

Copyright the photographers, various titles recently published by Aalphabet

A brief shout-out about the pending World Photobook Day occurring on October 14th. This fun day (this year on a Monday) originated by The Photobook Club of Madrid in conjunction with my buddy Matt Johnston whose idea was to form the various Photobook Clubs from his base of operations over in England.

This date is a direct homage to the first known photobook: Photographs of British algae with Cyanotype impressions by Anna Atkins (a trivia question if I ever saw one!). As the exact publishing date is unknown, they have taken the date that appears in the registry records of the copy in British Library: http://www.bl.uk/catalogues/photographyinbooks/record.asp?RecordID=3048

So here is a short list ideas for how to participate in this event:

  • Post a #PhotoBookDaySelfie on social media: an image with you and your current favorite photobook.

  • Discuss your love of photobooks via the twitter hashtag #PhotoBookDay

  • Donate a photobook or photozine to your nearest public library or school library. One of the things  that I am considering.

  • Buy a photobook. Many bookshops and publishers will make special discounts for the day. As alternative, read a photobook that you have not picked up for a while or one that you have acquired and not really spend time with yet.

  • For me, I think I will be publishing a photobook review on the blog this day.

So what about you?

Cheers!

April 29, 2014

Paris Photo LA – 2014

Paris_Photo_LA_Jablo_Barron_Freeberg_Pittman_Leutenegger_Callahan

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Untitled (stack of new books) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale.

One of the nice aspects of LA becoming a regional center for photography is the growing number of photographic events occurring locally. Even though I live a good hour drive south of LA (if the traffic behaves), much easier to attend than similar events in NYC, Paris, Rome, Amsterdam and Tokyo. Nevertheless, I usually only attend one day and if the event is a three day weekend, I make it a point to attend on Friday. Basically there is a much smaller crowd with more accessibility to exhibits and meet-ups, the downside is the grander presentations are usually on Saturday.

This past weekend was Paris Photo LA and the smaller Photo Independent (my review of the Photo Independent on Singular Images) located adjacent to the Paris Photo LA. My interest was primarily on the Paris Photo LA is the presence of the photobook publishers and distributors. This year the book publishers was Aperture (US), Kehrer (Germany), MACK (UK), Taschen (US) and Bookshop M (Japan) along with Printed Matter (US) and the U.S. mega photobook distributor Artbook D.A.P. Also a couple of photobook dealers, such as Harper Books and Dirk K. Bakker Boeken. There are also a few photobooks found amongst the various exhibitors, but this took more time to hunt down than I had available this year with the exception of Andy Freeberg’s recently published Art Fare, but this was a prearranged meet-up.

Most of the publishers have recently published titles and frequently titles that are not going to be released in the U.S. until late summer or early Fall, so a nice opportunity to see what’s coming out. Most of the publishers and distributors were organizing book signings, so an opportunity to meet up with the photographer behind the book. I have already reviewed Douglas Ljungkvist’s Ocean Beach, nevertheless this was an opportunity to meet the guy behind the book as we had already been trading email and Facebook messages leading up to his book being reviewed. Thus a chance to meet Rachael Jablo and an introduction to her photobook My Days of Losing Words, Nancy Baron and her photobook The Good Life, Robert Pittman and his photobook Anonymization and Catherine Leutenegger and her photobook Kodak City. As you can see in the photograph above, I also acquired the Harry Callahan book, but a bit too late to meet up with him. I had a chance to meet up with Cristina De Middel, Renee Jacobs and Wendy Hicks during my meandering as well as there were a couple of missed opportunities.

The big tension for Friday night was the darkening clouds and the forecast for rain that evening. Some of the store fronts where either books or pictures were hanging are true Hollywood facades sans roofs. So below are some of the sights of Paris Photo LA, which by the way was held again on the back-lot of Paramont Picture Studios in Hollywood. How LA is that?

Cheers!

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_at_Paramont_Studios_backlot

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_Cristina_de_Middel

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_Andy_Freeberg_Art_Fare

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_Douglas_Ljungkvist_book_signing_Kehrer_Verlag

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_Melissa_Catanese_MACK_books

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_at_Paramont_Studios_Kehrer

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_Barbara_Karpf_Kehrer_Books

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_at_Paramont_Studios_Stage_32

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_Harpers_Books

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_Robert_Pittman_book_signing_Kehrer_Verlag

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_logo_on_Paramont_Studios_backlot

04-25-14_Paris_Photo_LA_Renee_Jacobs_n_Wendy_Hicks_n_cover_model

February 25, 2014

Photobook reviewer for EMAHO magazine

Filed under: Photo Book Discussions, Photo Book NEWS, Photo Books — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 9:00 pm

Emaho_magazine-photobook_reviews_American_covers_2

“America” photobooks

I had announced on my personal blog earlier this week that my photobook reviews will soon start being co-published in EMAHO magazine. Manik Katyal, the editior and publisher, has also asked me to be the “America” photobook specialist while Colin Pantall focuses more on the European photobooks. I thought that this was an interesting request and we are still defining this request. At the moment, as hopefully illustrated by the stack of books above, I am taking a very broad and liberal viewpoint on what constitutes an America photobook. I think I have always had a global perspective on contemporary photobooks, so I will not preclude discussing photobooks that don’t fit into this America category.  Should be interesting.

The readers of this blog will probably notice some changes. First, since EMAHO is an on-line magazine for photography, fine art and music, I do need to format the size of my images to be consistent with their layout. All supporting photographs will have a wide frame and slightly larger than I have been using to date. I had standardized a long time ago on a 800 pixel width which will not change to a 868 pixel width. You might like the larger photographs, eh?

Another change is the background that the photobooks are resting on, which has been the flooring of my work area. This background has at times created a bit of inconsistency in the color management of my supporting photographs effecting the color of the books and their interiors. This color drift issue has been bugging me for some time so in conjunction with a recent rearrangement of my studio, I have created a new space to photograph the books. I am still tweaking this a little, but I am evaluating at a couple of different white backgrounds.

So the first book that I plan to publish on EMAHO magazine is the late W. Eugene Smith opus The Big Book published by the University of Texas Press (Austin, TX) last year. This book is a facsimile of a maquette (book dummy) that Smith created in 1960 but the final book was never published in his lifetime. Below are a couple of my test images with the new format and background. I still notice a very slight color shift of the backgrounds in the two images (same background), but an improvement over my earlier process. Still a little bit more work to do.

Oh yes, I did not realize until I published this book photo that I had inadvertently inverted Andreas Oekter-Kast  photobook Looking for Wonderland, a German photographer’s road trip through America.

Cheers!

W_Eugene_Smith-The_Big_Book_dummy_interior_1

W_Eugene_Smith-The_Big_Book_slip-cover

February 21, 2014

Pine Lake – Out of Print

Filed under: Book Publications, Photo Book NEWS, Photo Books — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 7:23 am

Douglas_Stockdale_Pine_Lake_cover_L

Pine Lake, copyright 2013 artist photobook by Douglas Stockdale

I recently arranged with photo-eye (Santa Fe, NM) book store to sell the last copies of the edition for my Pine Lake artist photobook. I believe that in publisher’s terms that when all copies are now in the hands of the bookstores that I am officially Out of Print. Wow, that did not take long.

So there is one remaining copy of the edition at As Issued, here on the left coast, and a couple with photo-eye and L’Ascensure Vegetal for Europe.  Pine Lake is SOLD OUT at the Reminders Photography Stronghold gallery in Japan.

I really do appreciate the great response to this book and my short semi-fictional story. As many of you have told me, it looks great in photographs on the web, but it’s awesome when holding the actual book object.

I suspect that I soon will be making the announcement that Pine Lake is SOLD OUT. very nice.

Cheers!

douglas_stockdale_pine_lake_interior_book_with_memorbilia

February 2, 2014

LA Art Book Fair – 2014

Filed under: Photo Book NEWS, Photo Books — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 4:41 am

02-32-24_Entrance_LA_Art_Book_Fair

untitled (LA Art Book Fair, January 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale

Last year I was pretty stoked when it was announced that the NY Art Book Fair would be making a Left Coast appearance. And it was pretty nice event with my only big complaint was the crappy lighting made very difficult to examine most books. And for viewing a photobook, the lighting can make a difference. Nevertheless I was pretty excited that there was a second LA Art Book Fair at the Geffen Contemporary at MOCA, especially as I noted a stronger attendance by photobook publishers, dealers and bookstores.

And somebody got the message, the lighting was much, much improved and I don’t recall any complaints about it compared to the uproar last year.

My hour and half drive up from Orange County paled with those who flew in from London, Paris and other parts of Europe as well as Japan and Asia. What a fantastic melting pot. In many, many ways. A lot of tables with some very small publishers covering a full range of diverse artistic subjects. It is really nice to have this opportunity in our back yard. Personally I would like to see a lot more of the contemporary photobook publishers being represented, nevertheless there were more this year than last, so if the buzzzz continues to be good, perhaps there will be even more next year.

Other personal issue is the paucity of photobook/artist stores which carry true hand-made artist books. Even Printed Matter in NYC stated that they do not carry many titles if the sales price exceeds $50.00. There are rare book dealers who make a trade in the $250 to $10,000+ books, but they do not carry new or recent artist book titles. Give me a shout-out if you are aware of some hand-made artist book sellers.

So this year I took a few more photographs while I attended the Book Fair since Lauren Henkin, who coordinates the Handmade Books by Artists group on Facebook, gave me a shout-out to report on the event. So first qualifier, I am not a photojournalist, perhaps a story teller but not a documentary photographer. That said, since a photograph is a thousand words, my visual reportage follows below. And most of my portraits documented the new fans of The Photo Book Club who were proudly wearing their new badges (at least for the moment).

Cheers!

My thanks to Clint Woodside, Kelsey Vance, Mary Virginia Swanson, Sarah Hadley, Aron Morel, Mike Slak, Harper Levine, Maura Lucking, and Alex Campox for be patient subjects.

02/02/14 postscript: Erik van der Weijde brought to my attention late last night that I missed one of the project rooms (yeah, the one he was in and I did want to meet up with him) in the labyrinth of gallery space (okay, a beef, but heck it was on their event map, so my bad). In retrospect, I did something similar last year. This is a complex space to visit. And I did not by any means look at each title on every table, this is one very, very dense book event. Admittedly I skimmed a bunch of the areas which I was having trouble connecting. It is really meant to be more than a one day visit, but it is what it is and I am very happy to have been able to spend the time I did. Already looking forward to next year!

02-32-24_Clint_Woodside-Deadbeat-Cliub_at_Art_Book_Fair

02-32-24_Kelsey_Vance_n_Mary_Virginia_Swanson_n_Sarah_Hadley_Art_Book_Fair

02-32-24_Aron_Morel_Books_at_Art_Book_Fair

02-32-24_Mike_Slack_at_Ice_Plant_next_J+L_books_at_Art_Book_Fair

02-32-24_Maura_Lucking-RAM_at_Art_Book_Fair

02-32-24_LA_Art_Book_Fair_Focus_Photography

02-32-24_Harper_Levine_Books_at_Art_Book_Fair

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02-32-24_Alex_Campox_Cener_for_Book_Arts_NYC_at_Art_Book_Fair

02-32-24_food_trucks_LA_Art_Book_Fair

02-32-24_LA_Art_Book_Fair_Zine_Village

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