About the Contributors #9

For a few titles the photographers were also the contributing poets or writers.

Sally Mann, authored entirely by Sally Mann, includes her provocative introduction, early poetry and photographs which were made prior to the many published books that follow her career. A livre d'artiste first from the 21st Editions Collection.  
 
To evoke what, like a dream, was lost
only seconds ago, only decades ago,
 
To recover and clarify the deposits,
grace so fragile, so various.  


Measurement has become useless
there in the peak, lush summer.

The winds call out the distances
and the fast clouds sound out the heights,
dive for the great, rolling dark
of the hills, weigh with the balance
and pull of the water, condense
on the wineglass perfection of elm.

 

A rare look into a piece of Louisiana history. Metoyer's poetry and photographs are autobiographical and show an unusual blend of talents by one artist. Metoyer not only conceptualized the images that reflect his history and creative mind, he too wrote the poetry and printed four different processes for this book: platinum, palladium, cyanotype, and kalitype. Celebrated in 2008 as our 10th anniversary title for 21st Editions, it was acquired and resides in 13 collecting institutions in the U.S.

MADAME ZUZUSKA

Augured by the planets' gravitational whirl,
Madame Zuzuska spoke to him of omens.
She ciphered his numbers,
whispered he was born
on the cusp of a fateful day.
"Decline, my child. Anguish and decline."
Then the blackened cloud of prophecy
loomed in the pupils of her apostle's eyes
as Zuzuska warned of his life's maddening gyre
and the destructive seduction
of a swelling lunar cycle.
Now, every stubbed toe,
every unanswered call,
every initial sliver
of the phosphorescent moon
transforms to premonitions
of grisly things to come.

 

Jamie Baldridge's unique talent marries a short story and fictional journal entries from a character whose artistry as an image maker is unlike his peers. Authored and printed by the artist, academics and historians focused on this for their collections as a piece of great inventive literature, new technology image making, and binding made from patina'd brass.  

"Sometime around noon, for I still had not the capacity for counting the Gear Shifts to tell time, I found myself hopelessly lost in the candle lit warrens below the Arcadian Convent. After what felt like hours of switchbacks and dead ends, I began to panic and surrendering to my fears fell into the first open door I found, unintentionally interrupting the work of a lovely scribe occupied with quite the longest scroll I had ever seen. I vainly attempted to salvage what was left of my pride, and after dusting myself off politely asked where I might find the Mother Superior's offices. The girl continued to work as if I were not there. Before I could make my inquiry again, this time perhaps in a more desperate timbre, a gentle, but firm hand grasped my shoulder and a voice somewhere near my navel said, "We really shouldn't disturb her."

 

Each of the 16 silver prints in Crowd printed by artist Misha Gordin (comes as a two-book set with Shadows of the Dream) is accompanied by a poem by this Latvian artist. Each book in the set is bound with multiple leather in-lays that echo back to early European livre d'artiste design.

Like fear looming from the somber sky
Come visions of the faceless crowd
Bound with tears of sweat
In endless corridors of labor.


In a unity of dream and reality
From the darkest corners of the heart
Like a shadow from the murky past
Emerges a call for a lonely prayer.


 

     Sally Mann

   Sally Mann

    John Metoyer from  Blood Migration

   John Metoyer from Blood Migration

    Jamie Baldridge, from  The Everywhere Chronicles

   Jamie Baldridge, from The Everywhere Chronicles

    Misha Gordin, from  Crowd

   Misha Gordin, from Crowd