In its seventh edition, Photobook Week Aarhus 2020 will exanimate the theme Seriality – Multiplicity – Repetition. These terms may look very similar at first sight. They also seem an apparent choice for both the photographic and the book media, as photobooks are perfectly reproducible and come in editions or series. However, if we think of the open boundaries of the photobook with artists’ books and the multiple, the theme becomes more multilayered and complex.
Repetition in fact implies that there has been “first time”, and everything that comes after is somehow of less importance. We all know that it takes a greater effort to make something happen for the first time, and things get easier and smoother with reiteration. Seriality also implies that an original, a prototype, a maquette, has taken time, effort and wit to become what it is, before it is chosen to be produced and reproduced in a series of equal copies. The singularity and aura of the original are replaced by mechanical reproducibility, and a (more or less) democratic dissemination strategy. Not the unique printing plate, but the entirety of the copies of an edition is the quintessence of printed matter. In other words, the book is not the sum of its pages, but the multiplicity of and wholeness of all its printed copies.
Invited curators will include Lars Blunck, José Luis Neves, and Tamara Berghman.
Please stay tuned for more news in the coming weeks.