26 Jan 2019

renga time

I'm thinking of making a zine with the photographs from my New Europe collection. Why zine? Wouldn't it be an opportunity to add to my fabulous publishing empire? Well I'm seeing this as a punctuation point not an end. This is still very much a work in progress, as is the immigration debate itself of course.
I have to credit my friend Fabrizio from my local LIP group for the inspiration as he has used the zine format to really complement his wonderful work. 
One characteristic of a zine I like is that you can do away with the reverence of the high end reproduction values of a book. For me it's a more accessible way of presenting images and their sequencing in a visceral way that can really engage you. It reminds me of my conscious rejecting of what I called the white gloves school of photography back in the day. For me the word zine recalls the work of Jamie Reid. In no way could I call myself a punk but the DIY ethos of creating art - whether music, design, film or photography - of picking up whoever or whatever is around you and expressing yourself is really vital to the individual and society.
Zine planning
This is also another opportunity to do something different to how I've worked before by collaborating on the selection and flow of my pictures. Typical of my practice it's always been a solitary process. I had a foray into collaborative working thanks to the Ambiguous Book Project which was quite magical so the seeds are there. This time I'm keen to use the process to interrogate my own work.It's taken me time to feel comfortable doing that myself so I'm excited...and a little nervous.
Fabrizio and I have shared our separate experiences of taking photographs in Tokyo and so listening to the radio this week I was caught by the Japanese phrase Renga.  It's a genre of collaborative poetry but for me it captured perfectly what I'm trying to do...and I never miss an opportunity to see serendipity.
Kore wo yarimashou!

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