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Photo Books at PhotoNOLA: A roundup

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This year’s PhotoNOLA festival includes a panoply of offerings for lovers of photography books.

The PhotoNOLA Education Day: Focus on Photo Books kicks things off on December 12 at the International House Hotelwith a series of discussions and presentations. Mary Virginia Swanson, who co-authored Publish Your Photography Book(Princeton Architectural Press), will lead the way. The event costs $50 in advance ($60 at the door) and lasts from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. (lunch not included).

The Contemporary Art Center hosts “Unfolding Images,” a collection of independently produced photography monographs from around the world curated by San Francisco-based Seth Curclo. This exhibition includes, among many other stellar works, a monograph, Heaven, by Room 220 friend and contributor Clark Allen. The exhibition is on view at the CAC until Dec. 30.

A Gallery for Fine Photography will help launch two new local photography books, Inventing Reality and Oblivion Atlas, with an event from 8 – 10 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 15 (241 Chartres St.).

Inventing Reality, edited by long-time New Orleans arts writer Eric Bookhardt, showcases 27 contemporary New Orleans photographers’ “visionary” work. Published by Luna Press, it includes an essay by Bookhardt and images by folks such as Deborah Luster, David Halliday, and Akasha Rabut, the latter whose contribution was originally created for the chapbook We’re Pregnant, published by Press Street.

Oblivion Atlas is a new book collaboration by author (and Room 220 contributor) Michael Allen Zell and photographers Louviere + Vanessa. Published by Lavender Ink, the book is a call-and-response (or staring contest) between the writer and image-makers, who draw inspiration from the likes of Andrei Tarkovsky and Jaques Prevert to create art that “recognizes what Genet called the universal wound shared uniquely by all.”

New Orleans Museum of Art photo curator Russell Lord, whose recent work Gordon Parks: The Making of an Argument is both an exhibition at NOMA and a beautiful catalog published by Steidl, will sit for a panel discussion along with photographers William Greiner and Tammy Mercure. The panel, moderated by John Lawrence of the Historic New Orleans Collection, takes place from 3 – 4 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 15, at the Contemporary Art Center.

Chicago-based photographer Jane Fulton Alt will be among a group of artists signing books at the Contemporary Art Center from 4 – 5 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 15. Alt will be touting a new book, The Burn, which features haunting photos of controlled burns in the Midwest. Other photographers at the signing will include Deborah Luster, Josephine Sacabo, and William Greiner.

Richard Renaldi will give a lecture and sign his new book, Fall River Boys, at the Historic New Orleans Collection starting at11 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 15. The book elegantly depicts young men growing up in a post-industrial Massachusetts town. Copies of Renaldi’s monograph published by Aperture, Figure and Ground, will also be on hand.

See a full schedule of PhotoNOLA events here.

This article was reposted from Press Street: Room 220, a NolaVie content partner.