by Guy Archard
Publication date: January 2013
Extent: 48 pp + gatefold
Trim size: 200mm x 250mm
Photographs: 40 colour
Availability: Out of Print
Archard's first book, 'almost', is an enigmatic exploration of beauty and decay both in the physical and metaphysical form. Abstracted images take the viewer on a poetic meander through relationships with loved ones past and present, accompanied by pondering day-dream fixations on everyday objects.
Archard applies various modes of reproduction in his work, projecting his own manipulation on physical objects, transforming what exists in physicality in to artifacts and signifiers of his own world of contemplation. Sometimes he retains clear documentation of immediate vision, which anchor his place in the recognisable state of being. The images integrate with each other as if Archard is drifting between reality and unconsciousness, vivid memories appear within the mist of translucent recollections and ongoing struggles between the self and other.
Although the work is a personal creation, the story is open. The book has been laid out in such a way that invites the viewer to reflect on their own sense of self, and conceive their own relationships between images. There is no text to direct the viewer in the book, encouraging you to write a completely original narrative from the material provided.
The psychoanalytical interpretation of authenticity comes to mind when looking at Archard's work. The idea that subjective intervention in what we recognise as 'reality' is the most effective transportation of one's deepest truths.
The book itself is bound in soft Japanese cloth, and beautifully printed on Japanese paper, with a tipped image on the front, and silver foil blocked titling on the cover and spine.
"The juxtaposition of image types in concept seems discontinuous, but Archard has skilfully sequenced the images into a smooth continuous flow... Almost includes only 40 images but their cumulative viewing coaxes the viewer into a reverie, conjuring a state of mid-afternoon drifts or evening pre-sleep wonderment."
- GUP Magazine, Greg Andruszczenko
"A visual poem, 'almost' records Archard's personal connection to his material. More than statement or declamation, it's a book of crepusclar atmosphere and mood."
– Claire de Rouen Books
"We believe this is a truly beautiful photobook - on course to be tipped as one of the books of the year."
– The Photographers' Gallery Bookshop
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