JH Engström: Trying to Dance
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Estimated Value: $ 1,200  –  $1,400
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Jun 14, 2012 2:00 pm MT
Trying to Dance. Photographs by JH Engström. Design by Patric Leo. Edited by Gösta Flemming. Layout by Patric Leo, JH Engström and Gösta Flemming. Journal, Stockholm, 2004. Unpaged. Quarto. First edition. Clothbound with tipped on cover image. No jacket as issued. Numerous color and black-and-white reproductions.

"I'm always looking for presence. Whenever I try, my doubts get unmasked. Easier then to stick with absence. I'm not trying to prove anything. I don't have that many memories yet."--JH Engström, from the back cover.

One of the most sought after photobooks of the last ten years! The first of an autobiographical trilogy that also includes Haunts (2006) and Wells (2008).

One of the most sought after photobooks of the last ten years! The first of an autobiographical trilogy that also includes Haunts (2006) and Wells (2008).

From Martin Jaeggi, "JH Engström: Looking for Presence." Aperture no. 190 (Spring 2008)
"Trying to Dance, shot in New York and Sweden, presents a nonlinear juxtaposition of views of Engström's everyday surroundings, ranging from self-portraits and nudes to landscapes and interiors. The book does not offer the viewer an overall narrative that would subsume the meaning of the single image. It is a visual stream-of-consciousness monologue, an ongoing succession of moments that retain an importance of their own, fragments of relentlessly passing time. The impression of looking at memories, rather than documentary images, is heightened by the variety of the photographs, which span from straight black and white to heavily color-manipulated. Engström eloquently uses photographic techniques to evoke his subjective experience of a given moment. He says: 'I can only make photographs of what I feel, of what results from my encounters with people. In this regard, my work is completely subjective. At the same time, I am interested in objectivity, in the fact that since you take photo- graphs, you always deal with reality. And in this respect, I am not interested in subjectivity. It's a paradox.'"

"Trying to Dance is a masterpiece of enigma and indeterminacy, a tone set by the cover picture. A young couple stand together in a field, the girl in a short white dress,a scarf or veil on her head, and a bunch of white flowers in her hand. It is probably a wedding photograph--but we cannot be certain...Trying to Dance seems to be in the vanguard of a new genre that depicts a veiled, oblique, almost novelistic view of modern life, especially modern relationships, apparently offering frankness and disclosure yet actually remaining extremely guarded."--Parr/Badger

Fine-; a few surface scratches to cover image.
JH Engström: Trying to Dance JH Engström: Trying to Dance
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