1000 Words

10 Year anniversary print edition

Final copies!

Click here for your 10 year anniversary edition of 1000 Words.

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Since 2008 we’ve commissioned and published more than 1000 exhibition and photo book reviews, essays and interviews. Contributors include an extensive network of over 90 critics and writers such as David Campany, Susan Bright, Urs Stahel and Charlotte Cotton; as well as respected artists Wolfgang Tillmans, Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin, Vanessa Winship and Taryn Simon.

We’ve grown our audience to readers in over 120 countries and attracted approximately 140,000 unique visitors to the site every month. We have made more than 55,000 Twitter, Instagram and Facebook friends, and we’ve seen nearly 20,000 followers sign up to our newsletter.

We’ve organised exhibitions and workshops, offered awards, and conducted countless talks and portfolio reviews. In 2014 and 2016 we were nominated for a prestigious Lucie Award in the ‘Photography Magazine of the Year’ category.

Now we are launching our first print magazine.

2018 marks the 10th anniversary of 1000 Words, and what better way to celebrate than to publish a special print annual?

Designed by Sarah Boris, and printed at Musumeci S.p.A, Italy, the publication takes the form of a beautiful 200-page bookish magazine featuring a host of newly-commissioned content. At its core lies the high-quality reproductions of 10 portfolios from artists who, we believe, have built significant bodies of work and emerged as increasingly influential practitioners in the past decade. Those individuals include José Pedro Cortes, Laia Abril, Edmund Clark, Esther Teichmann and Zanele Muholi to name but a few.

Other highlights include a series of highly-anticipated city guides. From New York to Milan, London to Shanghai, we focus on some of the most engaging gallery spaces showing photography today. The magazine also contains long-read profiles on curators, opinion pieces on the representation of women photographers at leading photo festivals, reflections on British developments in critical race thinking, as well as insights into a decade’s changes in photography among other features. Finally, we delve into our archives and present a selection of memorable and talked-about articles from the 1000 Words back catalogue.

The production of the 10 year anniversary print edition of 1000 Words has been made possible thanks to 572 backers of a Kickstarter campaign.

Special thanks to Gerry Badger, Norman Clark, Frédérique Destribats, David Solo and Duncan Wooldridge for their generous support.

1000 Words Photography Ltd is registered in the UK as a private company no. 6957640.

ISSN 2631-486X


Table of Contents

Features

9  Editorial
• Tim Clark

10  Photography in Flux
• Lucy Soutter

16 Rewind, Repeat, Repeat with Stuart Hall
• Yasmin Gunaratnam

18 Les Rencontres d’Arles 2018
• Caroline Molloy

20 Multitude of Counterviews
• Taco Hidde Bakker

22 Trapping Time
• Tim Clark and David Campany in conversation


Portfolios

32 Max Pinckers Margins of Excess
• Lisa Stein

42 Laia Abril On Abortion
• Sara Knelman

52 José Pedro Cortes Planta Espelho/Mirror Plant
• Francesco Zanot

62 Daniel Shea 43–35 10th Street
• Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa

74 Edmund Clark My Shadow’s Reflection
• Max Houghton

84 Esther Teichmann On Sleeping and Drowning
• Daniel C Blight

94 Zanele Muholi Somnyama Ngonyama, Hail the Dark Lioness
• Renée Mussai

104 Yusuf Sevinçli Oculus
• Natasha Christia

114 Paul Mpagi Sepuya Mirror Studies
• Duncan Wooldridge

124 Carmen Winant My Birth
• Susan Bright


City Guides

136 San Francisco
• Roula Seikaly

137 New York
• Jon Feinstein

138 London
• Gemma Padley

139 Paris
• Laurence Cornet

140 Brussels
• Stefan Vanthuyne

141 Amsterdam
• Erik Vroons

142 Berlin
• Julia Schiller

143 Milan
• Ilaria Speri

144 Shanghai
• Yining He

145 Tokyo
• Ihiro Hayami


Archives

148 Richard Mosse Incoming
• Duncan Wooldridge

152 Dominic Hawgood Under the Influence
• Lucy Soutter

154 Edgar Martins Siloquies and Sililoquies
on Death, Life and Other Interludes
• Daniel C. Blight

156 Arpita Shah Nalini
• Emilia Terracciano

158 Christian Patterson Bottom of the Lake
• Lisa Sutcliffe

160 Alexandra Lethbridge Other Ways of Knowing
• Lisa Stein

162 Matthew Connors Fire in Cairo
• Max Houghton

164 Peter J. Cohen Snapshots of Dangerous Women
• Susan Bright

166 Matt Lipps Library
• Chris Littlewood

168 Sara Davidmann Ken. To be destroyed
• Greg Hobson

170 Valeria Cherchi Some of you killed Luisa
• Emma Lewis

172 Salvatore Vitale How To Secure A Country
• Max Houghton

174 Leigh Ledare Double Bind
• Simon Baker

176 T.J Prouchel ADAM
• Sara Knelman

178 Francesca Catastani The Modern Spirit is Vivisective
• Gerry Badger

180 Lisa Barnard The Canary & The Hammer
• Lisa Stein

182 Matthew Finn Mother
• Elizabeth Edwards

184 Peter Fraser Mathematics
• Jeremy Millar

186 Eva O’Leary Concealer
• Urs Stahel

188 Bryan Schutmaat Good Goddamn
• Gerry Badger

190 Federico Ciamei Travel Without Moving
• Duncan Wooldridge

192 Vittorio Mortarotti The First Day of Good Weather
• Natasha Christa

194 Luke Willis Thompson Autoportrait
• Duncan Wooldridge

196 Laura El-Tantawy In The Shadow of the Pyramids
• Gerry Badger

198 Mimi Mollica Terra Nostra
• Gerry Badger


Distribution:

1000 Words is distributed by Antenne Books through a wide selection of bookshops and specialist retailers across the UK and Europe. If you would like to know more about stocking 1000 Words in your store, or if you cannot find it in your country, please contact: inf0@1000wordsmag.com.

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Tel +44 (0)20 8985 5778 / +44 (0)7805 022950

Press:

Guardian
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Creative Review
Humble Arts Foundation
Redeye

Laia Abril

Lobismuller

Book review by Natasha Christia

He was an ordinary man of small stature with a mildly effeminate face. He belonged to the privileged few of his time, those who knew how to read and write. He undertook traditionally female manual tasks – tailoring, knitting, weaving spinning and cooking were among his aptitudes. A widower from a childless marriage at the age of just 25, he became a peddler and a guide for travellers across the inhospitable mountainous area between Galicia and the neighbouring provinces of León, Asturias and Cantabria.

In 1843 he was charged for his first murder but escaped arrest. Under a false name he led a seemingly peaceful religious life in a remote parish near the village of Robordechao, where, having earning their trust and affection, he indulged in numerous idylls with single, separated or widowed women from the area. In 1853 he confessed to having slaughtered several of them together with their youngest children while transporting them to a presumably better life in the nearby cities of Santander and Ourense, but persistently defended his innocence. He himself was a mere victim of evil’s will; his inclination to vice was nothing but the result of a family curse that turned him into a wolf, he claimed. He was pronounced guilty of nine murders, acquitted of four, and sentenced to death by garrotte. A couple of years later, Queen Isabel II commuted his sentence to life imprisonment to allow doctors to study his clinical case as lycophilia.

The werewolf, or ‘lobishome’ as he was referred to in northwest Galicia, was Manuel Blanco Romasanta, Spain’s first documented serial killer. The atrocity of his crimes won him a place in the pantheon of 19th century notoriety next to Jack the Ripper and others. Manuel Blanco Romasanta, became widely known as the Werewolf of Allariz, or most commonly as the Tallow Man, for he would commodify the fat he extracted from his devoured victims as high-quality soap. Legends surrounding him have been amassed into an amalgam of genuine historical research, folklore and pseudo-history. And yet, there seem to be more mystery to his enigmatic story…

Born in 1806 in the village of O’Requeiro of the province of Ourense in Galicia, Manuel, son of Miguel Blanco and Maria Romasanta, was baptised and raised as a girl for the first six years of his life. According to recent forensic evidence, he lived with a rare intersexuality syndrome, formerly coined as female pseudo-hermaphroditism. Manuel was in fact Manuela. He possessed female reproductive anatomy but because of her intersexual state, she secreted an inordinate amount of male hormones that led her to undergo a process of virilisation.

Laia Abril tackles this puzzling possibility in her most recent photobook produced in collaboration with her creative partner Ramon Pez for Editorial RM, entitled Lobismuller. The tale of the lobishome who ended being a lobismuller (‘woman-wolf’) is revisited under this novel perspective.

In line with Abril’s previous projects, Lobismuller rests on a pastiche of documentary photography, archival sources, fictional reconstruction and a unique brand of folklorish journalism that also incessantly explores the interplay between image and text. The story oscillates between morbid criminal records, a gothic darkness and a loosely Thomas Hardy-inspired realism of rural hamlets, famine and impoverishment. Neutral and austere in tone, it invokes the modes of straightforward documentary and carries the aura of a vintage object. Multiple narrative threads are brought together to form a confluence of myth, witchcraft and science, one typical of an era that can be described as the crossroads between the twilight of superstition and the awakening of great rationality. Amidst this pastoral iconography, semiotics and symbolic connotations of the landscape in regards to the wolf-tale and to gender are present: from the rugged stone villages to the inhospitable Celtic forests; from the red-tainted inserts of remedies and spells to the howling of wolves under the full moon and the river tides; from the blood cells of the helpless victims to the underground world of catacombs, uteruses and human souls… All this alongside a text that punctuates the identity shifting aspect of the protagonist: man and woman, masculine and feminine, religious and womaniser, falsifier of love letters – at once bucolic and refined, feared and demonised.

As we descend into the universe of Lobismuller, we cannot help but wonder what the book is really about since it is practically impossible to categorise such an assemblage. The various clues gradually push the limits of narration and form to examine uneasy yet intimate realities of sexuality, akin to those Abril has narrated in Thinspiration, The Epilogue and Tediousphilia or in On Abortion (the first chapter of A History of Misogyny). From the first invisible chapter of the book on the murderer, through to the second focussing on the apparition of the wolf and the reconstruction of the crimes, to the more neutral and scientifically engendered approach of the third and final section, the line of enquiry takes on a dramatic crescendo of query and menace.

Similar to the veneration of wolves in Galicia, Romasanta’s case is a prelude to the media frenzy surrounding well-documented psychopaths of the Industrial Age. For a long time the police were incapable of catching the suspect that plagued their investigators with the eventual trial lasting several months and a subsequent transcript that covered more than two thousand pages. Thanks to journalists being able to visit Romasanta’s jail cell extensive media coverage was attracted both in Spain and abroad, bestowing a frenzy of notoriety to the condemned legend. What’s more, Romasanta’s activity took place between 1830 and 1850s, literally during the advent of photographic technology and culture. This person existed before the invention of Alphonse Bertillon’s anthropometry and mug shots that three decades later would epitomise visual identity, and bestow upon the camera apparatus means of power and control.

Yet unmediated by the lens, Romasanta’s image lies encrypted. When the photographic record is absent, speculation and imagination is what remains. To compensate for this absence and to conjure up the elusive identity, Abril imbues her project with illustrations, scientific collages and fragments of bodies. When it comes to humanising Romasanta, her pictures appear veiled in light and contourless, as if trying to glimpse of the world after a long night of insomnia. When narration enters the terrain of the wolf, film ends up blurred, image-less, with no beginnings and no end. Our protagonist remains faceless. This is the most apt solution in order to address the psychological complexity of a character existing beyond definition; beyond definition for the measures of his or her time, let alone for a rural society plagued with superstitions; beyond definition for the very character itself. Both back then and today.

After all, history has always been male. Male in every aspect: writers, myths, appropriations and recreations. Maleness is conceived here as the solid, substantial consciousness of being that Sartre once famously defined. Non-male (understood as embracing any identity beyond the realm of male) emerges as an amorphous, identity-less object (an object not devoid of identity but needless of it) – a ‘twilight zone’, like the very forests Abril visits to reconstruct the steps of this particular murderer. Previously defined as the Other, but even further than this established Other, Manuel and Manuela, inhabits a grey area where facts fail. In the museum of relics that history has become today, this state of the unknown finds itself at its best. As the waters stagnate at the end of the book’s narrative, as the collages and reconstructions of old archives lead to new readings, this mash-up of confounding evidence manifests itself as a naturalised condition – a reminder perhaps of the core identity that used to exist once upon a time before it was oppressively canonised under history’s masculine biases.

All images courtesy of the artist. © Laia Abril


Natasha Christia is a writer, curator and educator based in Barcelona. 

Top 10

Photobooks of 2016

Selected by Tim Clark

An annual tribute to the most exceptional photobook releases from the year that was – selected by our Editor in Chief.

1. Gregory Halpern: ZZYZX
MACK

Once the hype subsides, and you let Gregory Halpern’s images bathe you in glorious California sunlight, it’s clear to see why ZZYZX was named Photobook of the Year at The Paris Photo–Aperture Foundation PhotoBook Awards. MACK’s production is sumptuous and as far as photography goes Halpern’s is of the highest order.

The book takes us on a journey, starting at the desert east of Los Angeles, across the city and up to the Pacific Ocean but seen through the filter of Halpern’s ineffable vision, it is in fact more akin to somnambulation. Images depict odd characters and quiet moments – things observed, rendered through description and suggestion – which on accumulation build up a picture of a sort of Babylon on the brink of collapse. With an untold narrative, contained but concealed, we slowly feel the burning desire for a place; a dreamed-of place since, as Italo Calvino one wrote, “desires are already memories”.

2. Edmund Clark and Crofton Black: Negative Publicity
Aperture/Magnum Foundation

Part research document, part exhibition catalogue and part dossier, Negative Publicity presents a complex and multi-layered reflection on the CIA’s programme of ‘extraordinary rendition’. Clark has turned his camera to spaces and surfaces that contain a hidden, violent tension, those which stand in for the countless people who have disappeared into a mysterious prison network – the vanishing point for the law. Yet no drama is pictured here, just the drama of a picture. Collaborating with counter-terrorism expert Crofton Black, he has paired images and redacted documents to interrogate the nature of contemporary warfare and invisible mechanisms of state control. A book that really matters.

3. Sara-Lena Maierhofer: Dear Clark; Portrait of a Con Man
Drittel Books

Sara-Lena Maierhofer has made it her business to tell the tale of a real-life imposter who went by the name of Clark Rockefeller, among other personas, having passed himself off as a scion of the wealthy family. Dear Clark pieces together remnants of his life, through material such as birth certificates, brain scans and family photographs alongside images that speak to key themes of multiplicity and transformation. The book’s material qualities are almost akin to installation with design touches like tipped-in images that perfectly heighten the searching quality of the project. Reality and fantasy, fact and fiction are masterfully at play here as Maierhofer makes tremendous art out of deception and the corrosive effects of lies.

4. Michael Hoppen Gallery: Evidence Case File
Guiding Light

This richly illustrated, cleverly designed book offers a small but brilliant insight into the collection of reknown photography dealer Michael Hoppen. In parallel to The Image as Question: An Exhibition of Evidential Photography, recently on display at the eponymous London gallery, it sets out to disturb the big claims of photography as ‘record’ or ‘proof’. A judicious selection of works harks back to the medium’s 19th century origins and also includes images from 20th century stalwarts as well as contemporary artists. The book empties images of their original evidential function and reconceptualises them in a new context and in a new time. Questioning what a ‘fact’ is a well-trodden area of investigation yet the presentation, editing, sequence and paper choices are very well-measured and all equally important to the publication as various parts separately. Rewards the curious.

5. Laia Abril: Lobismuller
Editorial RM/Images Vevey

Laia Abril is continually on the up and the photobook has always been an essential part of her output. Just recently-released, Lobismuller sees the Catalan artist produce a meditation in photography and text upon Spain’s first documented serial killer. The Werewolf of Allariz, known as Manuel Blanco Romasanta was originally named Manuela since it was initially believed he was a woman. This central figure was also dubbed the ‘Soapmaker’, owing to his habit of using the fat of victims to produce high-quality soap. Gender issues, psychology, landscape, mythology and folklore… the mesmerising story is wrapped upon layer of exquisite literary narrative. Between each image and each piece of text, a creepy affinity can be established, demonstrating Abril’s fluidity between medium and genre, which has come to characterise her practice.

6. Todd Hido: Intimate Distance
Aperture

This is a lavish monograph befitting one of the most influential US photographers. Todd Hido’s unique brand of cinematic spectatorship is surveyed en masse in Intimate Distance, bringing together twenty-five years of photographs full of substance and thickness of atmosphere. The book tracks the development of a career via Hido’s overlapping motifs and preoccupations: disarming nudes, smudged landscapes and interiors or housing lit up as if glowing chambers, inviting us to consider his world-as-image and rethink his oeuvre from a fresh perspective. The need to know oneself and the fear of self-knowing find their beautiful expression here. His is an art of longing.

7. Francesca Catastini: The Modern Spirit is Vivisective
AnzenbergerEDITION

“Knowledge is not made for understanding, it is made for cutting,” reads the Michel Foucault quote that appears in the postscript to Francesca Catastini’s The Modern Spirit is Vivisective. It serves as a useful coda for considering the work. True to its title, this handsome book is an investigation into the process of studying human anatomy, combining the artist’s own photographs with vernacular images of old anatomy lessons, illustrations from Renaissance manuals, complemented with scientific, literary, and philosophical texts. Using chapters as its organising system – On Looking, On Canon Lust, On Touching, On Cutting, On Discovering – the book reveals a great capacity for sequencing images, and the possibility to conceive of them as a form of literature.

8. David Fahti: Wolfgang
Skinnerboox

Gathered on the pages of David Fahti’s Wolfgang are black and white photographs sprinkled with quotations from Wolfgang Pauli, a pioneer of quantum physics also held responsible for a large number of unexplainable failures of equipment at the CERN laboratory in Switzerland. Countless accidents, surprises and flashes of unlikely beauty and absurd humour work to conjure up Pauli’s omnipresence despite his absence in the images. Skinnerboox enlisted celebrated book designer Ramon Pez to step in and around the project and the production is all the better for it. A sum of its wonders; art, design, photography, science and history collide and fuse together to powerful effect.

9. Tito Mouraz: The House of The Seven Women
Dewi Lewis Publishing

Misty forests, bemused animals, brooding portraits and delipidated out-houses are just some of the gothic-infused imagery on display in Tito Mouraz’s The House of The Seven Women. They are visual elements invoked to give material form to a myth of the Beira-Alta region of Portugal, where the photographer was born and raised – that of a house believed to be haunted by the ghosts of seven sisters, including one witch. Strange happenings were said to occur on the occasion of a full moon, namely the women would fly from their balcony to a tree opposite and seduce passers by. An eerie and enigmatic mood piece, the work translates brilliantly to book form, classical and full of craft.

10. Adam Golfer: A House Without a Roof
Booklyn Press

The complicated histories of founding the state of Israel and the subsequent violence and displacement of Palestinians as a result of military occupation serve as the subject for this debut book from photographer Adam Golfer. A House Without a Roof draws on his own personal past and familial connections to the place to form an interesting, first person perspective while foregoing any conclusion about its troubled present. This is not easily reducible or categorisable work and Golfer deftly blends Internet-sourced imagery, archival material and extensive use of text with his photographs of the ongoing conflict, as seen at ground level. At least, it transmits the disorienting sense of an outsider locating oneself within a historic ‘home’, constructed through both real and imagined narratives. 


Tim Clark is a curator, writer and editor. Since 2008 he has been Editor in Chief and Director at 1000 Words Photography Magazine. Previously Associate Curator at Media Space, The Science Museum in London, exhibitions he worked on included Julia Margaret Cameron: Influence and Intimacy (2015) and Gathered Leaves: Photographs by Alec Soth (2015-2018), a major, mid-career touring retrospective. He has also organised many exhibitions independently, most recently Peter Watkins: The Unforgetting at Webber Gallery (2017) and Rebecoming: The Other European Travellers at Flowers Gallery (2014), featuring works he commissioned by Tereza Zelenkova, Virgilio Ferreira, Lucy Levene and Henrik Malmstrom. Together with Greg Hobson he has curated Photo Oxford 2017, which featured numerous solo presentations by artists such as Edgar Martins, Mariken Wessels, Martin Parr and Sergei Vasiliev and Arkady Bronnikov from The Russian Criminal Tattoo Archive among others. His writing has appeared in FOAMTIME LightboxThe TelegraphThe Sunday TimesPhotoworks and The British Journal of Photography, as well as in exhibition catalogues and photobooks. He is also a visiting lecturer on the MA in Photography at NABA Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti Milano.

Laia Abril

The Epilogue

Dewi Lewis Publishing

The vaguely legible title page of Laia Abril’s The Epilogue, the delicate and muted letters of which induce the viewer into its inky dark paper stock, is a rather appropriate introduction to one of the most compelling and utterly affecting titles of recent years. The Epilogue is a portrait of grief, frustration and loss; a multi-layered and complex narrative that intricately reveals the aftermath of one young woman’s struggle with bulimia and her family’s witness to the illness’ brutality and destruction.

The Epilogue is a harrowing epitaph to the life of twenty-six year old Mary Cameron “Cammy” Robinson and one that Abril, with acute attention to detail, seamlessly weaves together from a collage of fragments. Nearly a decade after Cammy’s death, Abril assembles recollections, artifacts, documents and the author’s own imagery, with a sense of purpose akin to that of a forensic scientist, and in doing so creates a body of work that sits somewhere between memoir, photobook and memorial.

Those who loved Cammy guide the narrative, and the author allows their memories to drive the story forward with sincere purpose, while Abril’s own understated photography underpins Cammy’s absence in their lives today. The Epilogue’s chronology dances between what was and what now is, and between the two states lies anger, frustration, pain and a futile search for clues and answers – the inevitable why and what if, lingering over every spread of the book.

The impending finality of Cammy’s life is felt early in the narrative and it weighs heavy as the story unfolds – the increasing tension of which is astutely but delicately enhanced in both the thoughtful design of the book and the compassion and sincerity of the story’s delivery. The Epilogue’s concluding document confirms Cammy’s fate and although tragically inevitable, the overwhelming emotional response is something so rarely achieved within the parameters of a photobook.

—Tom Claxton

All images courtesy of the artist. © Laia Abril/THE INSTITUTE