The Photocaptionist

The Photocaptionist is tuned up ready for your impending visit!

There really aren’t a lot of excuses to hesitate, pause or even shuffle slowly when it’s but a mere click away…

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The Photocaptionist is a platform that promotes the practice of concubinage between photography and literature, images and words. Authors of the past, contemporary and emerging writers, critics and photographers will ‘meet’ on photocaptionist.com for a photo-literary feast.

The project is loosely inspired by Bertold Brecht’s 1955 Kriegsfibel [War Primer], a unique work of art that introduced a new literary genre, the fotogramm (photo-epigram), where he combined poetry and news photography to unmask the true nature of war in a capitalist society. It is also informed by Walter Benjamin’s 1934 essay ‘The Author as Producer’, where he stressed the importance of the caption to rescue the picture from ‘the ravages of modishness and confer upon it a revolutionary use value’.

The name derives from a dream I had a couple of years back of a grumpy bloke whose job title was precisely Photocaptionist, and whose task was to find or produce creative texts to accompany the photographs he was sent by various institutions, artists and random individuals. I forgot about him for a while. One day I came across an empty 1940s photo album in the streets of Derby, UK, with a very peculiar typestyle on the cover. Out of curiosity I commissioned typographer and artist Rob Draper to replicate the typestyle and form the word ‘Photocaptionist’. The imaginary bloke was back, grumpier than ever, working non-stop as a matchmaker between photography and literature, texts and images.

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http://photocaptionist.com

 

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