Photographs and artwork by Ed Templeton.
Greybull Press, New York, 2006. 228 pp., Illustrated throughout, 9½x11½".
This project has been cancelled by the publisher
In Deformer, artist Ed Templeton explores his upbringing in suburban Orange
County, California, through photographs, stories and ephemera from his youth
and teen years, giving readers—as he did viewers of the short Mike Mills film
of the same name—an intensely close and personal look at his coming of age.
He weaves disciplinary letters from his grandfather and religious notes from
his mother in with telling images and brutal stories, creating an unresolved
narrative that offers more questions than answers. Or perhaps the answers
are these photographs, paintings, drawings and sketchbook pages, which
plunge readers headlong into not just Templeton’s chaotic existence but also
his use of art to address its stresses and joys. Deformer is the culmination of a
vision 11 years in the making, and collects over 30 years of material. Its photographs
illuminate being young and alive in the “suburban domestic incubator,”
and provide—in the tradition of Nan Goldin or Larry Clark, with a sharp
eye for the streets that recalls Garry Winogrand or Eugene Richards—a raw
and unflinching glimpse into the artist’s own life and the lives around him.
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