I Looked & Looked by Magali Duzant

Tonight I attended a launch party at Field Projects for I Looked & Looked an artist book by Magali Duzantpublished by our friends at Conveyor Editions. This one night event was purposefully held on the anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, the night this project began.

Image courtesy of Conveyor Editions

Image courtesy of Conveyor Editions

Image courtesy of Conveyor Arts

Image courtesy of Conveyor Arts

I Looked & Looked draws its title from a line in a love letter Alfred Stieglitz wrote to Georgia O’Keeffe in 1923. In it Stieglitz describes a full moon over Lake George. By chance, O’Keeffe described the same moon in a letter she wrote to Stieglitz from York Beach on the very same night.

Image courtesy of Conveyor Editions

Image courtesy of Conveyor Editions


Image courtesy of Conveyor Arts

In 2012, Duzant discovered this exchange prompting her to ask twenty artists to describe the coming full moon of October 29th. On that night Hurricane Sandy struck, leading to unexpectedly differing accounts of a single sky. I Looked & Looked combines these stories together with Duzant’s own photo-based reflection on our shared moon and it’s potential as a as site for human interconnectedness.

Image courtesy of the artist

Image courtesy of the artist

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With a Little Help for Our Friends

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During the month of October, the ICP Library Team has been pitching in to assist their colleagues at ICP@Mana to unpack 4,000 boxes of treasures onto the shelves of their new collection storage room.

It is very diverting and rewarding, and sometimes we pulled out the phones to share a glimpse with you.

If you would like to see beautiful images of what is IN all of these boxes, take a look at our website.

This weekend, the ICP Print Study Room’s Associate Curator Claartje van Dijk will host the first class in our new facilities: The ICP/Bard MFA Class of 2016 for one session of their class called “Research: Library, Collections, and Digital Assets,” taught by yours truly.

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ICP at the New York Art Book Fair

Preview Thursday, September 17, 6-9 pm
Friday, September 18, 1-7pm
Saturday, September 19, 11am-9pm
Sunday, September 20, 11-am-7pm

MoMA PS1 is located at 22-25 Jackson Avenue on 46th Avenue,
Long Island City, NY

Free and open to the public, the NY Art Book Fair is the world’s premier event for artists’ books, catalogs, monographs, periodicals, and zines. Last year, the fair featured over 350 booksellers, antiquarians, artists, institutions and independent publishers from twenty-eight countries.

ICP is proud to have many students, current and former staff and faculty, affiliated groups and alumni exhibiting at the fair and participating in events during the weekend. Here’s a guide to our folks at the fair and if you can’t make it in person be sure to follow us on Instagram @icplibrary for pics.

Opening Night of Printed Matter's NY Art Book Fair 2014. Photo courtesy BJ Enright Photography

Opening Night of Printed Matter’s NY Art Book Fair 2014. Photo courtesy BJ Enright Photography

ICP Faculty, Student and Alumni Tables

ICP Faculty, Student, Alumni 

and 10 x 10 Photobooks Events

  • Daisuke Yokota: Color Photographs And Print & Play: Japanese Photobooks
    Sept 18–20, 2015
    ICP-Bard Studios
    24-20 Jackson Avenue, Long Island City, NY 11101
    10×10 and the ICP Library present two pop-up exhibitions highlighting contemporary Japanese photography and photobooks on view at the ICP-bard MFA Studios during the NY Art Book Fair at MoMA PS1.
  • Opening Reception: Saturday, Sept 19, 2015 from 6-9pm
    Pop-Up Hours:
    Friday, September 18, 12-8pm
    Saturday, September 19, 12-9pm
    Sunday, September 20, 12-5pm
    Afternoon tea with Nick Waplington- Saturday, Sept 19th 2015, 3-4pm
    ICP-Bard MFA Studios, 24-20 Jackson Avenue, Long Island City, Queens
    Artist talk and book unveiling with the man himself.
  • Contemporary Artists’ Books Conference
    Two full days of lively debate on emerging practices and issues within art-book culture.
    Begins Friday, Sept 18, 1:30 pm
    ICP’s Matthew Carson has produced a session for the #CABC on the relationship between archives and photography and the increasing phenomenon of using an archive as a narrative structure in photobooks. Presenters for this session include ICP’s Bernard Yenelouis, Susanne Kriemann (Berlin) and Kalev Erickson (London) from the Archive of Modern Conflict.
  • Conveyor Magazine
    Friday at 4:00pm – 5:30pm Launch of the Time Travel issue of Conveyor Magazine. In celebration of the release, a limited edition set of Time Machine postcards designed by artist Liz Sales (MFA 2010) will be included with each copy of the magazine. Conveyor Magazine is published by faculty members Jason Burstein and Christina Labey.

See all The NY Art Book Fair book signings and launches.

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Freedom to Do and Undo: Cuba in Photo Books


Freedom to Do and Undo: Cuba in Photo Books

The larger picture of Cuba that could be gleaned from our collection of photo books is limited by circumstances: the long-term sanctions against trade with Cuba by the United States and the cultural politics generated during the Cold War. Since the “end of history,” as Francis Fukuyama referred to the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989, we have had to contend with the hybrid mappings of Cuba by the First World as an exotic theme park of old cars, great music, and an oppressed but sensual populace stuck in a now impossible past.

Beyond the dizzying contradictions in Cuba’s representation in the United States, from potent revolution to perfect vacation, we can examine Cuba’s shadowy relation to the United States, whether traced by the intrepid journalists intersecting with dictators and revolution, or in the wanderings of photographers in a tropical land untouched by the Protestant work ethic that distinguishes our everyday existence. There is a touch of the baroque in the old palatial residences and fortifications, so out of step with our Fordist and post-Fordist economies.

“The end of history” also implies the end of historical time. But if our eternal present needs to be fed by constant consumption, we see in the daily life of Cuba that filters to our sanctioned vision such paradoxes as a constant re-use and retrofitting of almost all things we would have discarded and replaced long ago, along with a resilience that has little to do with the commodity fetish and the rigid timetables of our plugged-in everyday. Perhaps the fervid explorations of this “pearl of the Antilles” tell us more about our daydreams than about this small country ninety miles south of Florida. And in our mercurial economy, we can perhaps anticipate some future transformations nascent in the projects of our photographic explorers.

-Bernard Yenelouis

Ernesto Bazan, Al Campo, Brooklyn: Bazan Photos Publishing, 2011
TR820.5.C9.B39 2011

Carleton Beals, The Crime of Cuba, Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott Company, 1933
TR820.5.C9.E92 1933

Rene Burri, Cuba y Cuba, Washington DC: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1998
TR820.5.C9.B87 1998

Pablo Cabado, Laminare Cuba anos 90, Buenos Aires: La Marca Editorial, 1999 TR820.5.C9.C331 1999

Anthony Caronia, Afro-Cuba – Mystery and Magic of Afro-Cuban Spirituality, Bern: Benteli Verlag, 2010
TR820.5.C9.C3761 2010

Raul Corrales, Giron – memorias de una victoria, Rome: Percorsi Immaginari Edizione, 2001
TR820.5.C9.C673 2001

Cuba in Revolution, Moscow: Garage Center for Contemporary Art, 2011
TR820.5.C9.K83 2011

Walker Evans, Cuba, Los Angeles, Getty Publications, 2001
TR820.5.C9.E92 2001

Carlos Garaicoa, Continuity of somebody’s architecture – Project for Documenta 11, Platform 5, Kassel: Documenta, 2002
TR659.G369 2002

Burt Glinn, Havana – The Revolutionary Moment, New York City: Umbrage Editions, 2001
TR820.G55 2001

David Alan Harvey, Cuba, Washington DC: National Geographic Society, 1999
TR820.5.C9.H371 1999

Alberto Korda, Korda – A Revolutionary Lens, Gottingen: Steidl, 2008
TR820.5.C9.K674 2008

Thierry Le Goues, Popular, New York City: powerHouse Books, 2000
TR820.5.C9.L444 2000

Andrew Moore, Inside Havana, San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 2002
TR659.C9.M66 2002

Robert Polidori, Havana, Gottingen: Steidl, 2001
TR659.4.H38.P65 2001

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In the Window: Mary Ellen Marks Revisited

Man and Beast

Mary Ellen Mark had a long, beautiful, and illustrious career. From Europe, to India, to Ethiopia, to Seattle, she always brought her honest photographer’s eye. She captured what was important to her, and tried to show it through the least critical eye possible. She wanted subjects to be comfortable in front of her, to have relationships with her. And she did form relationships with her most iconic subjects, like Tiny from Streetwise. Her work shows how her subjects gave her full access into their lives, experiences, and emotions. The end results are frank and honest portraits that invite the viewer to learn more, and see more of the subjects. We, in the library, wanted to show our appreciation for Mary Ellen Mark and her work that has inspired so many photographers and image makers. In the window we have a collection of her books that we have in our possession. This curation is in tandem with an exhibit on Governor’s Island, Picture This: New Orleans, which was the last project that Mark was working on at the time of her death. We invite you to peruse, get some inspiration, and encourage you to visit the exhibit on Governor’s Island!

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This selection of books was curated for the adjacent window by Sadie Hope-Gund. Sadie has been the Library Intern at ICP this summer. She just completed her first year at Brown University, and has been a fantastic asset to the Library.

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Bijan Roghanchi’s Thoughts on The Photobook Tehran

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Whenever and wherever I attend an event featuring Iranian art I go in skeptical. My lens in skewed by an awkward mix of nationalism and emotion, patriotism and ideology. I am American and I am Iranian. As galvanized as I am by the identity of one, I am indoctrinated by the other. I am turned off by a highly fetishized vision of Iran and the misguided idea that sharing art will free the Iranian, an oppressed individual, from despotism and dictatorship. I am offended by the self loathing aristocracy of northern Tehran that control much of the gallery scene, the longings and yearnings of post colonialism/imperialism.

In Photobook, an exchange of photography books between the Sazman-e-Ab foundation in Tehran and the International Center of Photography in New York City was decidedly neither of these as evidenced by an intriguing selection of photobooks that spanned generations and genres. Nima Behravan and Matthew Carson curated the exchange which boasted many titles including several newly self published books.

The collection touched on several parts of the history of Iranian photography without dwelling unnecessarily on any single one. The most prominent name among the list of photographers was Abbas Kiarostami. His work Snow White was featured on the bottom a shelf facing out into the hallway of the ICP library. Its’ size and design were bold, but images were disappointing.

Many of the books were written simultaneously in English and Farsi and it was interesting to see how designers dealt with the direction changes; English reads left to right, Farsi is the opposite. The same was true for cover design evident even in the placement of ISBN numbers and barcodes. Unfortunately the quality of some of the translations were poor, confusing and ultimately did distract from the quality of the images and their stories.

To be sure some of the books didn’t make it. Too many photographs, too little editing. Too much focus on layout design and translation, not enough focus on technique and context. But these too added a needed sense of originality to the exchange as a whole. They created a feeling of rawness. First look. Welcomed experimentation.

A self published work by Farshid Arzang, The Book of Amnesia, suffered from a combination of translation and design. The off-sized book featured dual covers, English on the left, Farsi on the right. I was confused as to which direction I should read the book. Some photographs were titled seemingly simultaneously in both languages while an adjacent photo was fully captioned only in Farsi. Had the English titles been removed all together I would probably have only focused on the image.

The highlight of the collection for me were The Hard Time, a book on Sarajevo during the Bosnian conflict by Mohsen Rastani. Although English translations throughout the book were weak there was a decisive direction to the work. The book only opens one way and the text layout works well with English and Farsi reflecting each other. The photographs are ones I’ve seen before though not through Rastani’s lense. They are reminiscent of dozens of images I have seen from the Balkans: A boy laid out on a makeshift hospital bed, empty sniper lined streets, and bombed out buildings. They were good photographs, some even great. As part of the collection it made an important statement; “these are photobooks from Iran, not Iranian photobooks.”

In all Carson and Behravan should be congratulated. They brought new work into our world where as photographers we are desperate for a new way of seeing. They did so with a graceful eye for image and place, but left cliche for another time.

Bijan Roghanchi is a photographer and writer based out of Hoboken, New Jersey. He holds a B.A. in Photography from New Jersey City University as well as certificates in languages from universities in Spain, France and Iran. His most recent work Becoming Iranian, due out late 2015 explores themes of identity, culture and society in contemporary Iran.

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Library Reader Resources for Fashion Books!

While fashion itself is always consumed by what is current, cool, and trending at one particular moment, fashion photography is fairly eternal. An image from the seventies of a stylish woman is somehow still cool in the twenty first century. Part of the allure must come from the attitude of a truly stylish person–the constant confidence that can be so clearly captured in an image. A person who is well-dressed in the fifties must feel the same as a person well-dressed today, right? Fashion, beyond the basic level of protection, is about putting part of yourself on the outside, for everyone to see. Well, not exactly your entire self, a part of yourself. The part that you want the world to see.

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It is very telling to see what people wear, and see what they are most comfortable in. And it is a great experience to feel as though you have found an outfit that truly reflects how you want to be perceived by the world, and what you feel is most enjoyable to wear. (There is a certain happiness that can come from clothing). I don’t think the feeling of wearing a perfectly suited outfit have changed in the last 50 years. The other attraction of iconic fashion photography is that the pictures and styles are constantly being referenced by current fashion, so they are never truly out of style. It’s hard to exactly pinpoint what is completely original current fashion that has not been done before, or is not based on earlier decades. I guess that is to say that if it was at one time stylish, it will forever be stylish, especially if captured and commemorated by a fashion magazine or photographer.
Enjoy these additions to the Library Reader Resources for Fashion Books!

Camilla Nickerson, Fashion in the Nineties (D.A.P, 1998) [TR679.F37 1998]

Arthur Elgort, Personal Fashion Pictures (A. Elgort, 1983) [TR679.E43 1983]

Susan Bright, Face of Fashion (National Portrait Gallery London, 2007) [TR680.B75 2007]

Stefano Tonchi, The First Forty Years: W (Abrams, 2012) [TR679.W25 2012]

Glenda Bailey, Harper’s Bazaar Greatest Hits (Abrams, 2011) [TR679.B35 2011]

Richard Avedon, Avedon Fashion 1944-2000 (Abrams, 2009) [TR679.A94 2009]

Sadie Hope-Gund is the Library Intern at ICP this summer for two months. She just completed her first year at Brown University, and is looking forward to writing for Monsters & Madonnas more in the coming weeks!

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