People photograph their families more than ever before, whether casually, on a phone, or in a formal wedding portrait. This bold anthology explores how photographers around the world take on the emotional roller coaster and complex dynamics of family life. The book is divided into two parts: Our Own Families and Other People’s Families, focusing on photographers who make their own families their subjects and those who aim their lenses at other people’s. Each section includes an essay analyzing the complex attachments between brothers and sisters, parents and children, step-families and in-laws, outcasts and adoptees.
The book includes the work of nearly forty international photographers, including sophisticated artworks in a range of photographic styles, and personal, never-before published shots. Birte Kaufman’s award-winning images of Irish travelers, Magnum member Trent Parke’s darkly amusing shots of his family in suburban Australia, Nadia Sablin’s elegy to her elderly aunts living in rural Russia, and Elina Brotherus’s devastatingrecords of failed IVF, are just a few of the astonishing visual journeys, supplemented by interviews with the artists, that push the boundaries of our understanding of family.
[An] amazing book… Brilliantly selected, edited, and arranged, these exceptional photographs around a fascinating subject both universal and singularly personal will attract anyone who appreciates photography as art.
— Library Journal
A global and authentic family album
Sophie Howarth is a writer, teacher, curator, and entrepreneur based in London. She was Curator of Public Programmes at Tate Modern and an Associate Curator for Artangel. She is coauthor, with Stephen McLaren, of Street Photography Now.
Stephen McLaren is a photographer, writer, and curator based in San Francisco. He is coauthor, with Sophie Howarth, of Street Photography Now. He also coauthored Photographers’ Sketchbooks with Bryan Formhals.