Phaidon £24.95 (352pp) (free p&p) from the Independent Bookshop : 08430 600 030
Vitamin Ph, Introduced by TJ Demos
This survey of current photographs delineates the weird state of post-modern art – wildly diverse and personal, yet often bizarrely imitative. Skipping surrogates of Nan Goldin (nudity and scars) and Martin Parr (lurid close-up of iced buns), you encounter images that live on in the mind for their chilly resonance.
Some of the best rediscover the power of landscape; Alex Slade's roadblock under a Californian mountain; Geert Goiris contrasts the incongruous domesticity of Seattle homes with a cliff whose blackness is emphasised by waterfalls and scabby snow. The posed "art" shots seem shrill and silly compared to the reportage. In all cases, the quality of the reproductions is very fine.
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