A Series of Human Decisions.
Photographs by Bill Jacobson. Text by Ian Berry.
Decode Books, Seattle, 2009. 104 pp., 65 color illustrations, 9x10".
Bill Jacobson is widely known for his out of focus photographs which suggest the temporality of human existence. Whether shooting figures or landscapes, his work has been consistently ethereal, addressing the passage of time, loss, and the fading of personal and collective memories. This volume presents a new body of work which, though now quite sharp and defined, is similar in that it presents fragments of both beauty and melancholy.
According to Jacobson the title “refers the idea that we live in a highly constructed world. The world is just that, a series of human decisions, one layered upon another over time. We move constantly from one fabricated arena to another.” The images here convey the idea that our creations and subsequent decisions to arrange objects in space become the evolving visual world which constantly surrounds us. Each photograph conveys a human touch, suggesting this process is spiritual as well as practical.
The book includes an in-depth interview between the artist and Ian Berry, curator at the Tang Museum in Saratoga, New York. In the text Berry states that “these photographs are quiet but they are also full of energy ... Many are still, focused, and very concentrated, but never without a lot of buzzing around the edges.”
Read George Slade's review of A Series of Human Decisions on photo-eye's Magazine.
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