Photobook Bristol: Words and Niches

Colin Pantall introduces a talk. Picture Mark Power

Colin Pantall introduces a talk. Picture Mark Power

Colin Pantall is one of the Creative Directors of Photobook Bristol as well as being a blogger and a senior lecturer at Newport. He says Photobook Bristol is not just an event for niche publishers. He says he tweeted an invitation to Kim Kardashian to take part as she has published a photobook.

More surprisingly, he says that he doesn't think there is any 'true critical writing on photobooks at the moment' and more generally, questions if there is any critical writing about photography at all, of any kind, which I expect will be a disappointment to many writers, especially coming from a senior university lecturer who, after all, should know. This may be merely a question of terminology, Colin explains his position with reference to a book by Susie Linfield called Cruel Radiance (the relevant section of which is here) that argues that too many people who have written about photography haven't actually liked it. This may explain why he declares himself 'biased' in favour of the medium and calls for a new way of talking about photography that examines the writer's own role in interpreting it.

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