Modern Instances: The Craft of Photography
Silkscreen printed linen hardcover
17 x 24,5 cm
Published by MACK,
‘Although the dream is a very strange phenomenon and an inexplicable mystery, far more inexplicable is the mystery and aspect our minds confer on certain objects and aspects of life.’ Giorgio de Chirico
Stephen Shore’s Modern Instances: The Craft of Photography is an experimental new memoir from one of the world’s most prolific artists — an impressionistic scrapbook that documents the rich and surprising touchstones that make up over half a century of ground-breaking work. With essays, photographs, stories, and excerpts that draw on Shore’s decades of teaching, this is an essential handbook for anyone interested in learning more about mastering one’s craft and the distinct threads that come together to inform a creative voice. As much as offering meditation on the influences of a single artist, Modern Instances proposes a new way of thinking about the world around us, in which even the smallest moment can become a source of boundless inspiration — if only we pay attention.
Stephen Shore's work has been widely published and exhibited for the past forty-five years. He was the first living photographer to have a one-man show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York since Alfred Stieglitz, forty years earlier. He has also had one-man shows at George Eastman House, Rochester; Kunsthalle, Dusseldorf; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Jeu de Paume, Paris; and Art Institute of Chicago. In 2017, the Museum of Modern Art opened a major retrospective spanning Stephen Shore's entire career. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. His series of exhibitions at Light Gallery in New York in the early 1970s sparked new interest in color photography and in the use of the view camera for documentary work.
More than 25 books have been published of Stephen Shore's photographs including Uncommon Places: The Complete Works; American Surfaces; Stephen Shore, a retrospective monograph in Phaidon's Contemporary Artists series; Stephen Shore: Survey and most recently, Transparencies: Small Camera Works 1971-1979 and Stephen Shore: Elements. In 2017, the Museum of Modern Art published Stephen Shore in conjunction with their retrospective of his photographic career. Stephen also wrote The Nature of Photographs, published by Phaidon Press, which addresses how a photograph functions visually. His work is represented by 303 Gallery, New York; and Sprüth Magers, London and Berlin. Since 1982 he has been the director of the Photography Program at Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY, where he is the Susan Weber Professor in the Arts.
‘Shore’s work has been a personal inspiration from my earliest interaction with it. With Modern Instances, I am humbled to have his profound insight into the rigorous over-thinking that made it possible. This insight, delivered with such clarity, grace, and humility, will no doubt affect how you make or appreciate photographs – it might even alter how you see.’ David Fincher
‘Shore’s memoir is as riveting as it is illuminating – an almost deceptively seamless narrative of experiences, associations, correspondences, images, and remarkable erudition that testify to the mind’s eye through which, from the beginning of his career, Shore has transformed the seemingly spontaneous configurations of his photography into profound works of art.’ Jane Kramer
‘Modern Instances is like a conversation among friends. It reveals a deeply inquiring mind, and renders making photographs, and looking at them, one of the most exciting and humane of pursuits.’ Sandra Phillips