TPW Books present their seventh annual quartet of books that unites singular artists in a singular theme. The compendium investigates the human form from myriad perspectives; distinct bodies of work that register beautiful moments of assonance.
The body is presented as a series of archetypes, an often haunting seriality of poses and gestures. Winant's photographic collages and compositions refigure the surveilled female body in the anatomical references with new agency, a sense of a hidden purpose. The model in Mona Kuhn's study struggles for balance, as much as Kuhn does in registering the image with chemicals in a process of solazisation. Kooiker evokes the unheimlich of dolls, photographing his fashion subjects from the neck down, and possessing a scientific sense of redundancy for style and decoration that sits them in an anthropoloigcal lineage. These senses of seriality in Teller’s series of photographs is anarchically dismissed: squish and flesh, the body slipping in and out of the landscape, and it’s total absence in neglected urban gymnasiums.
Carmen Winant, Body Index
‘Body Index began a decade ago when Winant worked as a model for figure drawing classes and, as she explains, watched herself being watched from every angle. Affected by this moment in which the surveilled female body is transmuted into Art, Winant began to collect and collage images of women posing– originally intended as anatomical reference photographs for artists –to explore how the female body is instrumentalised before the camera's gaze.’
Juergen Teller, The Nipple
‘In The Nipple the viewer is immediately confronted by the book's cover of Teller’s mask-wearing nude subject. The image, notably shot pre-pandemic, acts as an allusion to the ever precarious nature of our mortal bodies. In his iconically casual style, Teller continues to allude to the body by pointing us to unused and uncared for exercise equipment on empty European city streets. Eventually this repetition is punctuated by a personal element, the artist himself undergoing an endoscopic medical procedure, perhaps routine but possibly more serious.’
Mona Kuhn, Study
‘For Study, Mona Kuhn returns to the darkroom for the very reason she fell in love with photography: the latent image. Inspired by the surrealist photographers of the 1920’s, she explores the ethereal quality of solarization. A visually distinct process through which the photographed subject seems underlined by the alchemist’s pencil, solarization is thought to be discovered by Lee Miller while printing for Man Ray, who ultimately took credit for the discovery. The method is as complex and uncertain as the human form itself; consequently the recipes from the past no longer work on present-day materials. Like the figure in her images, Kuhn sought to find her own balance, the results culminating in a series of unique prints that reveal layers of silver glow in the form of oxidized magic.’
Paul Kooiker, Business of Fashion
During Voices, art performance organised by the Business of Fashion, Kooiker captured the attending array of entrepreneurs, designers and tastemakers, ‘equalizing them by capturing each from the neck down in a uniform “limbs-splayed” pose. Shot against a blank grayscale backdrop, the subjects, often accustomed to public recognition, become semi-anonymous, headless mannequins reminiscent of the window displays, mail order catalogues, and online marketplaces that drive the industry forward.’
All four books are hardcover, 22.5 x 28 cm, published by TBW Books, 2021