a shimmer of possibility. Photographs by Paul Graham. SteidlMack, Gottingen, 2007. 12 vols. Large quarto (13 1/2 x 10 3/4 in./24 x 32 cm). Limited edition of 1,000 sets. All hardcover with no dust jacket, as issued. Each bound in a different colored cloth. 360 pp. total. 160 color reproductions.
NOTE: To show the set to best effect, the image at used at right is a stock photo.
a shimmer of possibility was shown at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in the spring of 2009 in a show organized by Susan Kismaric, Curator, Department of Photography. As the Museum's publicity material described, "Each simple but structurally inventive series includes varying numbers of pictures, from one to more than ten, and provides a vivid glimpse into unheralded moments in the lives of individuals Graham encountered on his travels."
"I have been taking photographs for 30 years now," Graham said in a 2011 interview, "and it has steadily become less important to me that the photographs are about something in the most obvious way. I am interested in more elusive and nebulous subject matter. The photography I most respect pulls something out of the ether of nothingness… you can't sum up the results in a single line. In a way, 'a shimmer of possibility' is really about these nothing moments in life."
In a review of the MoMA show for the British publication 8-10 Magazine, photographer Chris Killip concluded, "The photographs in this exhibition unexpectedly reverberate back to what was good about Robert Frank. How Frank, some fifty years ago, lifted up an unedifying stone and found a way to look squarely at America. These Paul Graham photographs of now are hardly reassuring, but in this delivery have achieved a telling relevance, which needs to be seen."
Slight bump to outer box; all books Fine.