Álvaro Laiz, The Hunt – The Eye of Photography

In The Hunt, a new book released by English publisher Dewi Lewis, Spanish photographer Álvaro Laiz tells us the story of Udege people, in eastern Siberia, who have lived in the boreal forest for hundreds of years. Due to their close contact with nature, their beliefs are full of references to supernatural forces that they believe should be respected. In 1997 a Russian poacher called Markov came across the trail of an enormous Amur tiger. Despite the risk, Markov saw the tiger’s footprints as a promise for a better life. He shot the tiger, but was not able to kill it. Udege people believe that if someone attacks a tiger without good reason, Amba, the dark side of the tiger, will hunt him down. Without realizing it, Markov had unleashed the Amba. Over the following 72 hours the animal tracked him down and killed him. Later investigations suggested that the tiger planned its movements with a rare mix of strategy and instinct and most importantly, with a chilling clarity of purpose: Amba was seeking revenge. This animistic belief constitutes the leitmotiv to experience the impact of nature in the Udege communities across one of the last remnants of shamanism: the culture of the hunter.

American wars in the photobook – Witness

I want to attempt to come to conclusions about both the way photographers described war and how underlying larger professional and societal trends influenced the description. Needless to say, these two aspects are not independent at all. Photographers are embedded in societies. However much they might try, they can never escape the restrictions put upon them. They might fully embrace them, fight them, or engage in a combination of both. This then feeds back into the societies, which might change their thinking around wars based on what photographs tell them. It’s an imperfect feedback loop, whose imperfections are frequently being discussed by both photographers and society. Both tend to voice their dismay about war imagery not having enough power and/or impact to dissuade the starting of yet another war (by the same society having such conversations).

Jenny Sampson: Skaters | LENSCRATCH

I had the pleasure of meeting Jenny Sampson at Photolucida last April. She brought a stellar portfolio of wet plate collodion tintype portraits of skateboarders–the process a perfect reflection of the gritty street activity that draws in interesting community of athletes. Jenny also shared that she was releasing a monograph of Skaters: Tintype Portraits of West Coast Skateboarders, through Daylight Books, coming out this Fall. The book has just been made available and it reflects her commitment to the skater community by using a large format camera and portable darkroom at skate parks in California, Oregon and Washington. The book includes a foreword by Bret Anthony Johnston and essay by Joel Rice.

Harry Gruyaert: East / West – The Eye of Photography

At a time when the world was politically divided into East and West, Magnum photographer Harry Gruyaert’s quest for light and sensuality led him to capture the colours of two very different worlds: the vibrant glitziness of Las Vegas and Los Angeles in 1981 and the austere restraint of Moscow in 1989, just before the fall of the Soviet Union. Harry Gruyaert: East / West, published by Thames & Hudson, is a remarkable journey of contrasts and contradictions now published in two stripped volumes. The book reproduces nearly a hundred photographs of these two series, of which seventy are new images.

Carrie Boretz: Street | LENSCRATCH

powerHouse Books has just released an almost thirty year look at the streets of New York, seen through the eyes (and photographs) of Carrie Boretz.  Aptly titled, Streets: New York City – 70s, 80s, 90s, the work reflects a city in flux, more gritty and unstable, but her focus remains with the simple gestures of everyday life in neighborhoods and communities that were familiar. The book is a testament to seeing, Carrie managing to stay hyper aware of juxtapositions and relationships, but it is also a testament to commitment, returning year after year to the streets in search of that split second of something real and beautiful.

The remains of the Maginot Line, by Alexandre Guirkinger and Tristan Garcia – The Eye of Photography

Bunkers blackened with time, overgrown hedges, drab vegetation spewing out of crevasses: there is no color other than dark in Alexandre Guirkinger’s photographs. The remains of the Maginot Line, which failed to protect the French against the Germans, are like discolored scars on the face of the European twentieth century, convulsing with spasms and bathed in tears.

Alec Soth’s reedition of Sleeping by the Mississippi – The Eye of Photography

Sleeping by The Mississippi by Alec Soth is one of the defining publications in the photobook era. First published by Steidl in 2004, it was American photographer Alec Soth’s first book, sold through three editions, and established him as one of the leading lights of contemporary photographic practice. This MACK edition launches to coincide with the first exhibition in London dedicated to the series at Beetles+Huxley gallery, and includes two photographs that were not included in the previous versions of the book.

Susan Meiselas: On the Frontline – The Eye of Photography

In On the Frontline, her new book published by Aperture, influential photographer Susan Meiselas provides an insightful personal commentary on the trajectory of her career—on her ideas and processes, and her decisions as a photographer. Applying a sociological training to the practice of witness journalism, she compares her process to that of an archaeologist, piecing together shards of evidence to build a three-dimensional cultural understanding of her subjects.

A photographer’s five-year odyssey chasing personal demons resulted in this darkly poetic book – The Washington Post

Sebastien Van Malleghem’s forthcoming book, ‘Nordic Noir’ is the result of a five-year odyssey traveling through Scandinavia. Van Malleghem’s work has always examined the darker edges of life. He has photographed the war-torn streets of Libya, plummeted into the seedy underbelly of Berlin and examined the world of embalmers and morgues in Mexico, just to name a few of his projects. But in 2012, on the heels of returning from a post-Gaddafi Libya, Van Malleghem found himself on an island in Norway, trying to get away from that darkness and find a simpler form of photography. Thus began his obsessive love affair with Scandinavia which is culminating in the publication of his book.

Sory Sanlé: Volta Photo 1965-85 – The Eye of Photography

Sory Sanlé: Volta Photo 1965-85, a book published by Reel Art Press, is a collection of photographic work by Sory Sanlé, an eminent portrait photographer from Burkina Faso, the landlocked country in West Africa formerly colonized by the French, then known as République de Haute-Volta. “Voltaic” photography’s unsung golden age is fully embodied by Sanlé. His black and white images magnify this era and display a unique cultural energy and social impact.

From pictorialism to Provoke: the most extensive history of Japanese photobooks – The Eye of Photography

The Japanese Photobook, 1912 – 1990, published by Steidl and edited by Manfred Heiting, illustrates the development of photography as seen in photo publications in Japan—from the time of influence of European and American pictorialism, the German Bauhaus and Imperial military propaganda, to the complete collapse and destruction of the country in 1945. Then followed a new beginning: with the unique self-determination of a young generation of photographers and visual artists highlighted by the “Provoke” style as well as protest and war documentation of the late 1950s to the early ’70s, the signature Japanese photobook, as we have come to know it, was born. With detailed information and illustrations of over 400 photo publications, an introduction by Kaneko Ryuichi and essays by Jo Takeba, Yuri Mitsuda, Mari Shirayama, Satomi Fujimura, Kotaro Lizawa, Duncan Forbes, this is the first extensive English-language survey of Japanese photobooks of this period.

Marvin E. Newman’s Spellbinding “City of Lights” – Feature Shoot

Now in his 89th year, American photographer Marvin E. Newman is receiving his due as one of the finest street photographers of the twentieth century. His self-titled monograph, just released as a XXL Collector’s Edition from Taschen showcases his vibrant collection of cityscapes made in New York, Chicago, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles—as well as in the Heartland of the nation and the outskirts of Alaska between the years 1950 and 1983.

Priscilla Briggs: Impossible is Nothing: China’s Theater of Consumerism | LENSCRATCH

Impossible is Nothing focuses on that phenomenon with a six year investigation of where the east meets west. She traveled throughout the eastern seaboard of China to examine a “new brand of Communism that embraces Capitalism with Chinese characteristics.” Her photographs reveal constructed realities, especially when then relate to ideas of luxury gleaned from Western capitalist values and also shares what lies beneath the façade and the costs of global consumerism, as shown in Briggs’ photographs of factories and polluted waterways. Portraits, still life images and urban landscapes, rich in detail, are woven together to create a lyrical ode to the optimism and imagination of a country where anything seems possible

James Baldwin & Steve Schapiro, The Fire Next Time – The Eye of Photography

First published in 1963, James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time stabbed at the heart of America’s so-called “Negro problem.” As remarkable for its masterful prose as it is for its frank and personal account of the black experience in the United States, it is considered one of the most passionate and influential explorations of 1960s race relations, weaving thematic threads of love, faith, and family into a candid assault on the hypocrisy of the “land of the free.” It is now republished by Taschen.

The Lumen Seed: Records of a search in the Australian desert by Judith Crispin – The Eye of Photography

Judith Crispin is many things; a poet, photographer and scholar, as well as a mother, friend and daughter. She is also a cancer survivor. Just as these labels don’t define her, neither do the photographs and stories in her book define those who are featured. Rather, Judith Crispin gives a glimpse into moments that when combined provide a picture that is far more expansive in its storytelling than one image, one poem, one narrative can ever be.

Larry Fink, The Polarities – The Eye of Photography

The portrait of American society that Fink sketches out starting in the 1950s continues. The Polarities narrates modern America, the radical changes between the Obama years and the arrival of Trump, the society of the spectacle – in which “the show must go on” – and the continuing divide between metropolitan and rural areas. Here, Fink’s images recall those of the Farm Security Administration, the great project designed to study the American territory between 1935 and 1943.

Covering Conflict in the Central African Republic: Photos |

Over the course of the last three years, French photographer William Daniels made 10 trips to the Central African Republic to report on the country’s rapid descent into civil war and its very slow and still fragile recovery. His photographs were published, including in TIME, and exhibited internationally. Now, they are the subject of a new book, RCA, that takes a different approach — one that’s more reflective, “more subtle, more personal,” says Daniels.