TEN, a minimalist Nature Atlas
A series of books published by 0_100 editions, TEN is an original atlas in 6 chapters. Ten pictures, 12 pages, one photographer, each book focuses on one specific natural object. From the mushrooms of the Scandinavian hoods, to hefty ocean’s waves, let’s take ten steps into this unconventional archive of nature.
The 21st century marks the boom of self-publishing. The rise of digital printing allows independent photographers and young publishers to turn their ideas into paper and ink. Cristiano Guerri is a publisher and a photographer, as well as a believer of the art of the photobook. He launched his publishing project to develop his own version of nature photography, free from any editorial compromise.
Since 2008, 0_100 has released more than 30 photobooks, selecting photographers among amateurs and celebrated artists. With project-specific attention to format, the TEN series comes in fileable booklets with omega hooks on their spines. The first six pamphlets of the series are just the debut of an extensive categorization of Nature. Ten pictures per issue, because “In a series you rarely find more than 10 high quality pictures” Guerri says. 0_100’s trademark is not only quality over quantity, but also minimalism. Printing only in limited editions, they believe in the added value created by limiting the quantity.
“I was looking for something that I could not find in bookshops”, Guerri says, “I wanted to reinterpret traditional Atlases of Nature with a personal approach”. Charmed since childhood by these catalogs of the living and the landscapes, he reinvented them in a photographic, wordless fashion. The originality of each subject, the warmth of the gaze, and the subjectivity of the frames clearly distinguish this series from orthodox nature photography.
- Barbara Bosworth’ s Ten Wild Birds is a work of graceful portraiture that explores the relationship between the humans and the damp forests.
- Corey Arnold is a sailor-man and a photographer, and he spends his life capturing the vigor of his offshore environment. For the first time, he gathers ten pictures of waves. With no boats, no human presence, Ten waves focuses on the hefty stream and the roar of the sea.
- Tanya Marcuse’ s canvases of fallen fruits and flowers decomposing are made to be exhibited in a gallery. Guerri bets on the book format, and succeeds. The pages of Ten decompositions, enveloped in a pop pink band, condense a feel of the cycle of nature that is worth leafing through.
- In 2011 Takashi Homma published a very intimate work on the mushrooms of Fukushima, affected by the nuclear disaster. In 2016, Guerri asks him to bring back ten mushroom shots from the Scandinavian woods. Inspired by Ed Ruscha’ s artist books, Homma focuses on a specific object and delves into it, exploring it visually. Ten Scandinavian Mushrooms is an aesthetic, contextual and minimalist inquiry.
- Descending from the dogs that ancient Egyptians used to paint on their murals, the Africanis are an undomesticated landrace that lives in southern African rural areas. However untamed and savage, they are immobile in Daniel Naudé’ s studio-like pictures. The African landscape that shaped the breed is the omnipresent background of Ten Africanis, a statuary photobook.
- Italian photographer Jacopo Benassi reads the light and writes with it. His black and white pictures are famous for their texture, their sincerity, and their well-defined angle. For Ten Mediterranean Plants, the last book of the TEN series so far, he walks down the aromatic heights of his homeland. In the windy Liguria region of Italy, Benassi points his flash towards a crystallized Mediterranean flora.
Images © Jacopo Benassi, Takashi Homma, Corey Arnold, Tanya Marcuse, Daniel Naudé, Barbara Bosworth. Courtesy of 0_100 editions