• Found Photos in Detroit

  • $56.00

  • Description

    Found Photos in Detroit is a book of photographs and a few letters discovered by two Italian photographers while wandering the streets of Detroit. Like many other photographers, they had come to document the distressed city, but left instead with thousands of vernacular photographs, many of which were once part of a photographic police archive. An exhibition followed, and a selection of the images became this book.

    Though I’d read the book’s description and the comments from Erik Kessels and John Gossage, who selected it as a Best Book of 2012, the contents of Found Photos in Detroit caught me off guard. We see family snapshots and awkward portraits, but the majority of the photographs were taken as evidence -- images of perpetrators, victims or crime scenes. There is a sizable difference between police evidence and personal snapshots -- full ranges of emotions and facial expressions are common in mug shots but seldom seen in candid portraits. Pictures of swollen faces initially intended as documents of physical harm are transformed by context; the rawness of the emotion behind the eyes becomes an inadvertent subject. We seldom see such complex emotions in photography. - See more at: http://blog.photoeye.com/2013/02/best-books-closer-look-found-photos-in.html#sthash.T8Glg5mD.dpuf
    Found Photos in Detroit is a book of photographs and a few letters discovered by two Italian photographers while wandering the streets of Detroit. Like many other photographers, they had come to document the distressed city, but left instead with thousands of vernacular photographs, many of which were once part of a photographic police archive. An exhibition followed, and a selection of the images became this book.

    Though I’d read the book’s description and the comments from Erik Kessels and John Gossage, who selected it as a Best Book of 2012, the contents of Found Photos in Detroit caught me off guard. We see family snapshots and awkward portraits, but the majority of the photographs were taken as evidence -- images of perpetrators, victims or crime scenes. There is a sizable difference between police evidence and personal snapshots -- full ranges of emotions and facial expressions are common in mug shots but seldom seen in candid portraits. Pictures of swollen faces initially intended as documents of physical harm are transformed by context; the rawness of the emotion behind the eyes becomes an inadvertent subject. We seldom see such complex emotions in photography. - See more at: http://blog.photoeye.com/2013/02/best-books-closer-look-found-photos-in.html#sthash.T8Glg5mD.dpuT

    Found Photos in Detroit is a project by Italian artists Arianna Arcara & Luca Santese exhibited as part of the MoCP's Archive State exhibition (Jan 21 - April 6, 2014). In 2009 the artists visited Detroit, Michigan, to photograph the notoriously destitute Motor City. As they began their exploration of the city, the artists happened upon thousands of photographs, letters, and police documents such as mug shots and evidence of crime scenes or accidents, as well as family albums dating from the 1970s to the 2000s, all found near vacated buildings and in desolate neighborhoods.Rather than making pictures, the artists chose to present a selection of the found materials as their portrait of Detroit. Arcara and Santese’s collection physically and metaphorically depicts a failing city not only through the abandoned objects, some of which are discolored and deteriorated from long exposure in extremely volatile environments, but also through the information these documentary objects contain.

    Hardbound, 16.5 x 11.7 in / 42 x 29,7 cm
    80 pages, 167 photos, color offset
    Published by Cesura (2012)
    ISBN: 978-88-906328-3-9

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