THE RELUCTANT FATHER
Phillip Toledano is an Englishman living in New York. With an established international reputation, he has been a photographer and artist for the last 12 years. In that time, he has published 4 books, ranging in subject from plastic surgery, phone sex, and failing businesses, through to the last years he spent with his father. His work combines great poignancy with a rich vein of humour.
To his surprise, Phillip became a father in July 2009. He fell in love with his daughter about a year and a half later, when he realised she was the most bewitching human being he’d ever seen. Initially though things were different. The Reluctant Father follows Phillip’s journey at the beginning of fatherhood. From dismay and confusion, to the blinding light of unalloyed love. It’s a surprisingly frank, funny and moving account, and he hopes his daughter won’t hold it against him when she’s grown up.
In many ways, The Reluctant Father is a sequel to the best selling Days With My Father, which documented the three years Phillip spent taking care of his father, who suffered from dementia. More than 1.4 million people visited the site that he set up for the project, over 200,000 comments were posted, and Toledano received several thousand emails. The book has since been translated into several langauages and the photographs have been widely exhibited worldwide.
with essays by Edward Burtynsky & Cameron Sinclair.
The images in this book ask that we follow the quiet journey of Robert Leslie and his camera through a land where the notion of the unstoppable economy, a land of plenty, the ‘American dream’, is brought into question. Is this moment in history a major setback or is this the beginning of the inevitable decline of an empire….
Robert Leslie first visited the United States as a child in the late 1960s. There seemed to be an endless horizon of energy, enthusiasm & growth. Economically, at that time, the US was more productive per capita than any other country in the world and one of the major drivers of that economic certainty was the SunBelt, stretching across the south of the country from Florida to California.
For this project, undertaken over a three year period, Leslie travelled more than 10,000 miles on the road from Florida to California a journey that dramatically reshaped his perspective of the country. He chose a route through the Sunbelt at the height of the economic recession. Repossessed homes and men with “will do anything for money” signs told the tale. As his journey progressed, the impact of hurricanes, forest fires and drought became increasingly apparent. This entwining of the financial crash & natural disaster had shifted the once promised Sunbelt into the Stormbelt.
The recipient of numerous awards, Robert Leslie’s work is in private collections and institutions in Europe and the USA. 2013 has seen his work selected in the Judges Choice section of the Syngenta Award and nomination for the prestigious Prix Pictet. From 2005-12 he was chief photographer for the www.ted.com organization and the World Science Festival. He has been featured by Apple, Leica and Elinchrom lighting in case studies pushing the boundaries of their products, and is actively involved in educational projects with the Bezos Foundation, Positive View Foundation, and the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts.
TEN INTERVIEWS WITH EDITORS
DAVID BRITTAIN & CLINTON CAHILL
Inside Photography, a collaboration between the writer/editor, David Brittain and graphic artist, Clinton Cahill, is a book of interviews that sheds light on the art photography magazine. Inciteful and often irreverent, the book demonstrates how this critically overlooked type of publication can be an invaluable resource for creative and historical investigations.
David Brittain has been active in photography as a curator, critic, lecturer and as editor of the respected international magazine ‘Creative Camera’ (1991-2001). He has contributed to a wide range of publications and has been involved in the production of various documentaries for BBC TV programmes such as ‘The Late Show’ and the ‘Decisive Moments’ series. In 2000 his anthology of writings, ‘Creative Camera: 30 years of Writing’ was published by Manchester University Press.
In 2002 David was awarded an AHRC Fellowship in the Creative and Performing Arts to research the subject of photography and the self-published magazine. This book of interviews forms part of the extensive research that he has undertaken over the period.
Clinton Cahill is an artist, designer and educator based at the Manchester School of Art. His creative practice encompasses painting, graphic design and illustration, with a particular research interest in the relationships between text, illustration and the phenomenology of the image which is focused on a long-term study of visuality of James Joyce’s ‘Finnegans Wake’. Clinton’s illustrated blog ‘Illuminating the Wake’ has become a regular feature on the website of the James Joyce Centre, Dublin.
AFGHAN BOX CAMERA
LUKAS BIRK & SEAN FOLEY
Afghan Box Camera documents a living form of photography in danger of disappearing forever. Known as the kamra-e-faoree (‘instant camera’), Afghanistan is one of the last places on earth where it has continued to be used by photographers as a way of making a living. Hand-made out of wood, it is a camera and darkroom in one, and generations of Afghans have had their portraits taken with it, usually for identity documents. Under the Taliban, with the banning of photography, it was even outlawed, forcing photographers to hide or destroy their tools.
Spanning decades, from peacetime to war, box camera photography in Afghanistan exists within a more sophisticated photographic history. The same photographers who ply their trade with the humble kamra-e-faoree may also make large format black and white portraits, which are then hand-coloured with exquisite artistry. With the help of dozens of Afghan photographers Afghan Box Camera illustrates the technique and artistry of a previously untold and visually enthralling photographic culture.
Lukas Birk is an Austrian multi-media artist who exhibits regularly and organises visual-media workshops. He works primarily in Asia. In China and Indonesia he has set up artist-in-residency programmes as well as networks of local artists to co-operate with those in his native Austria.
Sean Foley, an Irish ethnographer specialising in visual anthropology, works as a researcher on art projects. He first travelled to Afghanistan in 2002. He has made ethnographic films on mortuary workers in India, tourism in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and cultural ecology in the south of Greece.
Between 2005-2007 Sean and Lukas collaborated, researching tourism in Afghanistan and the surrounding region. This resulted in the book Kafkanistan with an accompanying multi-media exhibition.
Introduced by Christopher Lord
Empire is a fascinating journey across the South Atlantic exploring life on four remote islands the British Overseas Territories of Ascension Island, Tristan da Cunha, the Falkland Islands and St. Helena relics of the once formidable British Empire, all intertwined through their shared history.
Jon Tonks spent up to a month at a time in each territory, travelling 60,000 miles around the Atlantic via military outposts, low-lit airstrips and a long voyage aboard the last working Royal Mail Ship. Some 400 rolls of film, 24 flights and 32 days at sea later, the resulting work creates an insight into these distant places that resonate with a sense of Britishness which is remarkably recognisable yet inescapably strange.
Tonks has photographed the people, the landscapes and the traces of the past embedded within each territory and through short texts, which combine history and anecdote, he tells the story of these remote and remarkable islands. His motivation is neither political or nostalgic, the images arising primarily from his curiosity about the lives of these distant lands that remain very firmly British.
Born in the West Midlands in 1981, Jon Tonks studied product design before becoming a staff photographer on a local newspaper. He moved to London to take a master’s degree in Photojournalism & Documentary Photography at London College of Communication, and it was during his studies that he undertook a trip to Ascension Island which was to launch the Empire project. Winner of an AOP award, Tonks has been published widely in the UK national press and his work is in a number of private collections. ‘Empire’ is his first book.
THE AURA OF BOXING
Introduced by DAVID SCOTT
The Aura of Boxing explores the world of the boxing gym, a tough environment in which boxers train their minds and their bodies in preparation for the gruelling challenges of the ring. Kandhola powerfully captures the gritty atmosphere of the gym and the unrelenting physical effort demanded of the boxers.
As well as looking at the training environment Kandhola focuses on three established figures in boxing: Julius Francis, a four-times British Heavyweight and Commonwealth champion, who Kandhola first photographed in 2000 just before his fight with Mike Tyson; Robert McCracken, who won the British Light Middleweight title in 1994 and the Commonwealth title in 1995 currently McCracken is Performance Director for the British Olympic team, and personal coach to Carl Froch; and Howard ‘Clakka’ Clarke who fought at Madison Square Garden for the IBF Light Middleweight Title he lost, after which his career took a significant nose-dive with him winning only one fight out of his next seventy. He retired in 2007.
Max Kandhola is an established UK photographer who has exhibited widely in Europe and the USA. His work is held in private and public collections including Autograph ABP, London; The Deutsche Bank Collection; Light Work Syracuse New York; National Media Museum, Bradford; and Birmingham Library. Kandhola is currently Head of Photography at Nottingham Trent University. This is his fourth book.
A former Middleweight amateur boxer, with experience of schoolboy, student and white-collar boxing, David Scott is a professor at Trinity College Dublin where he also acts as a part-time boxing coach. As a boxing writer he has focussed on the aesthetics of the sport, on boxing art and on boxing posters and has contributed essays on the subject to many UK and European journals.