Paris Photo

I have just arrived in Paris for a meeting with my Burn Magazine team and to attend Paris Photo. Here my iPhone works again during my after dinner coffee in my favorite after dinner coffee spot and well, Paris is still Paris. What not to love.

Diego Orlando and Eva-Maria Kunz, my loyal “family” on BurnBooks are with me here in Paris. We have had a good year since producing (based on a true story) in June…in the five months since publishing our limited edition book set in Rio we are almost sold out on an ascending pricing scale, have won Best Publisher honors from the Lucie Foundation, and we are on the short list of ten top books by Aperture/Paris Photo for Best Book out of a field of 600 books submitted in 2012.

Tomorrow at Paris Photo, at the Grand Palais, our team will be signing books at the Magnum booth at 2pm. If you are in Paris please stop by to say hello. I know many of our Burn friends are around and I so look forward to seeing you again. And surely there will some time for a cold beer and our usual camaraderie. For sure the spice of life.

We are also on press right now at EBS in Italy producing a super large format “newspaper” version of (based on a true story) which we will distribute for free 2,5oo copies, half of our press run, in Rio de Janeiro to schools and art classes in the favelas. As a payback to the Rio community, where I was so kindly accepted as an outsider making photographs of the Carioca culture for both our book and for the recent essay in NatGeo. Now in Paris you can see the dummy for this new “newspaper” format.

The pleasure for me in making photographs has always had an element of payback for the people I photographed. I always want for my subjects to get as much out of being photographed as I get in making the photographs. One of the beauties of the iPhone is that you can instantly send subjects their picture. Way better than my old method of handing out Polaroids.

Twins Roberta and Renata Tavares, my friends from Rio, and key characters in (based on a true story) will be coming to Miami/Art Basel for our exhibition there in December. Roberta had joined us along with Candy Pilar Godoy in Sydney, Australia for the HeadOn Fest show of our book. So the “family” aspect is just always there for me.

For sure all in this audience are a bit more “family” I think than would normally be associated with an online blog. Surely we arm wrestle a bit in the comments section here, but that is why we are here. To share ideas about our mutual first love – the art of photography in all of its manifestations.

Join me now in Paris Photo, or in Miami/Art Basel  in December. Those of you who already know me well know this is not an idle invitation. For sure when we meet it is always special. High fives all around to this Burn audience.



54 Responses to “Paris Photo”

  • Arghh, was at the PPhoto yesterday and now about to hop on a train to Brussels!
    Would love to see you all (after last time in NYC at the studio-party) btw, a shout out to Erica mcD!)…

    DAH, when are you leaving Paris?

  • Would love to see the “newspaper”….. maybe you could take a pic and share it here perhaps?
    I have not seen any reports from Eva or Thomas in instagram….WHY?!?!? ;-)))

    WOW Roberta and Renata are coming to Miami!!!! Can’t wait to meet them.
    It keeps getting better and better….I also just found out that Alex and Rebecca Webb will also be here in Miami during Basel.

    DAH a quick question: have you ever had someone tell you they do not want the photo you took of them published? I know you have a “two thumbs up” approach but I’m just wondering how you deal with that.

    Well……all the best for (based on a true story) winning first prize!

  • AKAKY: If we’re in Paris we should drop by.

    AKAKY_IRL: Really? And what are the chances of that happening, bubba?

    AKAKY: Not that great.

    AKAKY_IRL: Wiser words were never spoken, guy.

  • Am looking forward to Miami, especially meeting the talented twins, besides working with you again, of course!

    Success and fun in Paris!

  • Good luck with Aperture/Paris Photo. Is there such a thing as a trifecta for photo books? ;)

    Audrey and Laura are visiting Paris as well. I’m sooo jealous not to be there. In spirit, though!

  • Whoops – meant Triple Crown.

  • Have a good time in Paris and Miami!
    You have to come to Spain to show your work in an expo!… Maybe “PhotoEspaña 2013″… a photo festival which takes place everyear…

  • It has been an interesting week here in the egregious mold pit wherein I labor for my daily bread. Since Monday, I have been an unwilling participant in an ongoing argument with an elderly and more than a little loony Puerto Rican gentleman about the proper conjugation of Turkish verbs. I am an unwilling participant in this brouhaha because, as I have told him numerous times, I do not speak Turkish, I have never spoken Turkish, and it is entirely unlikely that I will be trying to learn Turkish any time in the immediate future. Given this state of absolute ignorance concerning all things concerning the Turkish language, I am not in a position to debate the proper conjugation of verbs in the future dubitative tense with this gentleman. In fact, however, I should mention that the gentleman I am having this one-sided argument with is in no position to argue the facts of Turkish verb conjugation either—possession of a small and incredibly ratty Turkish dictionary bought for a quarter at the second hand bookstore down the street from us does not make one an expert on the Turkish language, Turkish culture, or the long-term ramifications of current Turkish foreign policy in the eastern Mediterranean region and beyond, a position, I feel, is something that Turks of all political persuasions can agree with. If not, please let me know. After he finished lecturing me on how wrong I was in all matters concerning Turkish verb conjugation and grammar, our Puerto Rican gentleman asked for the address and phone number of a Spanish botanica in the city, saying that he wanted to go there in order to find something to help alleviate his loneliness. No one at his group home wants to talk to him, he said, and he did not understand why not. I must admit that I was about to snicker when he said this, but then the chuckle died aborning; it struck me that it must indeed be a lonely life for a mentally ill elderly man without a family when even his fellow crazies think he’s nuts.

    Television advertising constantly reminds the American public these days that America runs on the baked goods and coffee of a large chain of restaurants that will remain unnamed here. If you are an American, you know which chain I am talking about; if you are not, then there is no point in bringing the matter up; and if you are an advertising executive for this chain who wants to do some product placement I should point out that the advertising rates for such placement are very reasonable here.

    In any case, I was sitting at the red light waiting to make my right onto the highway that leads into the heart of our happy little burg. Unlike many red lights, which simply serve as a device to justify cops handing out traffic tickets, this particular red light does serve a practical function. While it is possible to make the right on red at this particular red light, it is not advisable. The lay of the land and the curvature of the road are such that in order to see if anything is coming down the highway, the hurried motorist must inch out almost halfway out onto the highway, thereby increasing the risk of having the front end of his car sheared off by some impatient doofus hurtling through the intersection before the yellow light turns red. Needless to say, I have, over the years, been the subject of so many near-misses at this light that I no longer go inching out onto the highway; being an extra minute early for work is simply not worth risking my neck for. This attitude, however, is not widespread hereabouts, as demonstrated this morning when the incredibly angry obese woman with a face like a cross between a Vietnamese fat-bellied pig and a rusty fire hydrant in the car behind me began leaning on the horn in order to move me along. I was not going to move, for the reasons aforementioned, and because that moving along is not a big deal at this light. This light, unlike so many traffic lights, actually goes through its green—yellow—red cycle quickly, so motorists in a hurry are never left sitting there wondering, when is this damn light ever going to change, for long.

    In any case, after one prolonged and very unnecessary horn blast, the woman opened her window and began screaming at me. I did not shout back at her; I simply adjusted my rear-view mirror in such a way that she could see what I was saying and used a short but definite phrase to let her know that I was not going to move until the light was green. Our automotive Brunnhilde saw what I said, and promptly backed up and went around me even as the light was changing and went roaring out onto the highway without looking to see if there was anything coming. Now, if life was fair, this avoirdupois ass would have had her avoirdupois ass smeared all over the road by a tractor-trailer, but alas, Nemesis would not have Her way with this gelatinous dolt today. She roared off down the highway like a Macy’s Thanksgiving balloon in a high wind even as the light turned green. I went out onto the highway a moment later and without worrying about the oncoming traffic.

    I saw her only a few minutes later. She was in the parking lot of the unnamed coffee and baked goods chain whose products keep America running, trying to hoist her very substantial and circumferential self out of the driver’s seat of her car. I laughed out loud, a not terribly polite reaction on my part, I know, but one I could not help at the time—the idea of charging blindly out onto a highway without checking to see if there was anything coming was just so stupid to me I could not believe it, as was knowing that the object of this stupidity was because this onnazumo manqué could not bear someone keeping her from her doughnuts and coffee for an extra twenty seconds. Those guys must make a damn fine cup of Joe.

  • I think Panos’ reaction says it all.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    I am focused,coffee time…keep reporting…PARIS,midnight in Paris?

    I am going to read AKAKY’S post…something about Turkish verbs?…hihi,go figure!

    I will be back…time to cook my beach chicken…FROSTY,this is for you;)))

    LOVE YOU ALLLLLL…Viva Paris,Viva BURNIANS…I am few hours away ,vroom,vroom:)))

  • a civilian-mass audience

    What not to LOVE!!!

    Beach roasted chicken on me !!!

    Photography is the light…
    the light that unites …
    the Universe is working…
    your images are shocking…

    to be continued…


  • As much as I am a fan of Anders Petersen, in my opinion City Diaries is over rated. I think the images are absolutely brilliant but most of it has been published in his other books and half the price. So I just don’t get what all the fuss is about.

  • Here is an official video from Paris Photo 2012 .. gives also some backgroud about the development of the fair and how it is positioned…

    Currently in transition from Paris to Athens – at home, but unpacking, packing .. tomorrow 4:30 am, off to business again. Were great days with the huge suprise of DAH appearing in Paris and the Paris Photo. He probably even surprised himself. Was good to see you guys .. :)
    Big hug everyone!

  • Paul.. me too, love his work.. but as you said, not really new (unpublished) work, only new make-up..

    While obviously my wish would have been for our (based on a true story), my bet would have been “Uncle Charlie”.. I really thought that would/could/should win..

    Thomas.. great to have seen you and all the others.. and thanks for all your help!

  • It is no different to going to Richard Long or Paul Klee exhibition, sure seen it all before but it is a new experience the relationships re formed between images, new personal concepts arise”………..and for many Petersen’s work is anew exoerience.

  • David…double “HiFive” from part of our big family from Rio. Thanks again Dave, simply for being yourself and having us making part of something so special in so many way to describe it. Renata and I can’t wait for Miami and for our long group hug..
    Carlo, it’ll be such a pleasure to meet you there too, you are being so present and active in each and all the adventures in Burn, that feels so good, natural and familiar to have you around…really nice the fact you’ll be there

  • Thanks, Civi, you know how to cook beach chicken just right.

    David, wish Rio had taken Paris, but you and Rio have traveled far. Damned incredible.

    All – it’s taken me a long time to get around to this, but I have finally started my Bringing the Fall Whale Home series from the first week in October in Barrow. As for the edit, it’s way too loose for Burn folk, but too tight for Arctic Slope folk. I anticipate four parts, all wrapped before Thanksgiving, but it could be five or six. This is the master link:

  • Just want to say a big big thanks to you all for this fantastic time in Paris. As say Thomas : “ENCORE”!

    Big bises everyone!

  • Excellent work, Bill. Though generally okay with hunting and generally supportive of endangered cultures, I’m uncomfortable with the whole subsistence whaling thing, suspecting the whales have a culture at least as worthwhile to preserve. Are there opportunities to document those working to help the whales as well? Or the lives of the whales, themselves? I know the Big Miracle work had a lot of that. Don’t know how much is ongoing? Of course it’s typical of me to want multi-perspective stories. Regardless, I’m glad your doing such a good job here of covering the Iñupiat view.

  • Roberta,

    This is like a second home to me :)))) and the fact that I get to learn! what else can one ask for?!?!

    The pleasure will be all mine to welcome all of you to my home town!
    It’s a bit on the chilly side at night (for Miami) so you might want to bring a jacket just in case….
    See you soon!

  • Interesting thing about the two latest photo awards is the little subtle fact that no newcomers have taken first prize. Both have been won by photographers who are in their sixties and have been at it for years. I get the impression us young ones who should be fresh blood, lack the intensity and bite David and Anders seem to have in bucket loads. Just goes to show the old are much younger in spirit and creativity than any newcomer…

  • Paris Photo winners:

    First photobook category: David Galjaard (young man) (

    Photobook of the year: Anders Petersen (old man)

  • Thank you, Mike. Your query is a good one and I have given it some thought and know how to answer. But I just learned of the death of the shoulder gunner you met in my book and somehow, that news has knocked all desire to write right out of me. I will answer, though. Probably tomorrow. I guess in New York, it’s already tomorrow. So probably later today.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    Viva my BURNIANS…best time in Paris…Miami is coming…road trips are never ending…


    P.S…oime,FROSTY,I don’t know who is the chicken anymore…cause here in Greece,we are ALL
    chickens,BURNED chickens…pfff…


  • cause here in Greece,we are ALL chickens………….DIY plucking chickens ask your politicians

  • ALL,

    here are some of the photos I took during Paris Photo – Panos and Roberta thankfully helped me editing them.
    Right off the camera to the slideshow:

  • Hey.. my clone was there :D

    Roberta.. I owe you an email.. yours arrived at a time when I really needed it, you’re a sweetheart!

  • Thomas…so great to know you were out there at Paris Photo , being considerate enough to make this report for us here at Burn and for those like me who couldn’t meet you all there and to be part of what seemed to have been an amazing photo event. Evidently I got a little bit jealous for the right reasons :) ..Thanks so much for sharing some insights and glimpses of the space, mood and Burn circus there

    Eva…is that the email I mentioned how we are all constantly grateful to your dedication, hard work , attention to all of us, things people couldn’t even imagine you do and that for these and many other points we need you for Rio, right? :)

    Carlo.. jacket in the bag! and see you soon

    Bill..we’ll be following your ‘bringing the fall whale home’ series ..Surely it’ll come beautiful and full of surprises considering what we’ve been already seing from it. hugs and kisses and keep strong!

  • Thanks for the link THomas! cool!

    The (based on a true story) newspaper looks a lot thicker than I thought…WOW!

  • Carlo.. that’s the dummy.. dummies always look thicker and just not as perfect as the “real” thing.. but are really really real too! To call it newspaper isn’t really appropriate.. you’ll see.. this is a really cool thing..

    Yes, I know, too much use of real and really.. but it really is IT! ;)

    Roberta, yes.. you REALLY exaggerate as always, but right then right there I needed it :)

  • Eva,

    Really? ;-)))) joking joking….

    But now I’m confused…I thought this was only going to the favelas. Will there be a small run for sale?
    I remember DAH talking about it earlier this year or was it last year?
    Hopefully I will see it here in Miami.

  • Carlo.. I mean, you will see the dummy, and see it is a REALLY cool thing.. :)

  • a civilian-mass audience

    WOWWWWWW…thank you,thank you THOMAS…WHAT NOT TO LOVE…


    THANK YOU…I miss u ALL…

    as IMANTS says…
    your plucking chicken

    P.S…FROSTY stay strong…ROBERTA,PAUL,CARLO,THODORIS,AKAKY…oi,oi…you are so many…
    together we can do miracles…cause the Universe is working…
    circle of friends…souvlaki on me…hmmm,or maybe just olives…

  • Well.. what can I say.. I am SHORT!!


  • Thomas… thanks for sharing your photos.

  • Mike, you understand that in the movie Big Miracle they did not document the lives of the whales, but rather the machinations of the mechanical whales they made for their studio down on the Anchorage waterfront, coupled with a lot of digital effects. I came on the set one day and they were happy to show me everything but they would not let me take pictures.

    I do what I can to photograph the lives of the whales, but it ain’t easy. I get little glimpses, here and there. As to documenting the people who are trying to help the whales, I have done a bit of that as well. Those people fall basically into two categories – the Iñupiat themselves and scientists. The Iñupiat, because more than anyone else, they have spearhead the search for funding and establishment of the census and scientific effort that has made the bowhead the most studied whale in the world.

    They have created the facilities for the scientists to work out of and have been their eyes and ears, because, for the most part, with a few notable exceptions, a scientist is a helpless creature in the Arctic without Iñupiat nearby – same for a photographer, I confess. There are a number of tagged whales being followed by satellite and, yes, you guessed it, it is Iñupiat whalers who have tagged them. Unfortunately, I have missed out on this so far, but hope to get it on the future. I have photographed the scientists at work to a small degree, because they do their work at the same time the hunters hunt.

    You are right in that it would be good to document this effort more thoroughly and I hope to figure out a way.

    As to what you saw in the movie – don’t believe it. It was fiction. The Greenpeace character was loosely based on Cindy Lowry, who I became friends with during the rescue. She came to Barrow not in opposition to Iñupiat hunting but in full support of it. Just about everybody, scienctists and otherwise, who comes north and puts in serious time with the whalers and whales leaves in support of the hunt. She and Greenpeace did what they could to influence what went on at policy levels involving the federal government and she did most of this from land. She rarely went onto the ice and she never dove into the water with the whales.

    As a practical, year to year matter, Greenpeace really does not do that much of true benefit to the bowheads, other than a bit of public awareness. The Sea Shepherds – nothing at all.

    As to the culture of the whale, it has been intertwined with the culture of the Iñupiat for how many thousand years? It took a big hit when the Yankee commercial whalers came in from the mid-19th through early 20th century. The big scientific and census effort that has been ongoing over the past 30-plus years shows a healthy and growing bowhead population. The hunt is closely watched worldwide and is regulated according to intensive scientific data.

    The big question now is how the offshore oil exploration and pending development is going to affect the whales. The federal government has placed very stringent rules on the industry but Shell sure had a lot of problems this summer. This is an aspect I want to do some heavy coverage on in the future. I badly wanted to do so this summer, but damnit, I was laid up all summer long from my surgeries. This fall series was the first I got out and did and maybe it wasn’t too smart of me to do it, but I did.

    Now I’ve got to have third damned surgery and trying to put it off until 2014, both so I can be free all through next spring, summer and fall to get out and do what I need to do, and so maybe I can get some insurance again once Obamacare kicks fully in.

    I don’t know if I will make it though. There are days when I do not know if I will make it another week.

    I just posted part 2, btw.

  • Happy Thanks Giving y’all

    (Love your kids the most)

  • Bill, this is perhaps a bit embarrassing, but I have to confess that I haven’t actually seen “Big Miracle.” I’ve just read your writing on the subject, which I’ve found invaluable. And the photos even more so. I really don’t get why your work on the subject hasn’t been published here. Seems to me to be one of the more valiant efforts going on in the photo world these days.

    So that’s where I’m coming from, but I still presume to offer small bits of advice, or simple wishes, however you choose to consider them. I can see how difficult it is to photograph the whale culture. Have you considered commissioning a small submarine manufactured and painted to look like a whale? With one of those you could hang out unobtrusively and no doubt get some incredibly enlightening photos. But if that’s somehow unfeasible, you could consider researching and writing about the Bowhead culture. You write so well about the Iñupiat, particularly when prodded. Photographs can only go so far. Some stories need writing to make them whole. I think you’re definitely the man for the job. I’d love to see you approach it systematically. I know you’re up against the health concerns. Maybe you could take some time for writing and save the photography for when you’re more physically able?

    I’m rooting for you. It’s a great story and it’s obvious that there’s no better person to tell it than you. If there’s ever anything I can do to help, please let me know.


  • a civilian-mass audience

    yeah,FROSTY…”tell it like it is”…!!!

    Happy THANKS GIVING to ALL…please,don’t forget to say thank you and I love you…
    everyday…every single day…first to yourself…
    THANK YOU CIVI…hiii!!!

    May the ouzo be good and my hangover be cured…Ole!!!

  • Dear Santa,

    Look dude, I don’t ask for much. You know that. But I just walked by that independent little bookstore on main street, the one that sometimes smells like weed in the back, you know, next to the tattoo parlor and piercing joint? I know you know the one, I saw you sitting in the back reading through the zine library with your purple John Lennon glasses on and your funky leather boots up on the desk, the typewriter at your elbow like your ready to make up that naughty and nice list but you’re too stoned so it’s Morty the Dog comics for the next few hours. So hey man, they got a nice hardbound editon of Ray’s A Laugh in the window, marked down even. It’s only $375. Just sayin’. I’ll leave the special cookies out.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    …Dear Santa…

    oi,oi…no further comment…:)))))))))))))))))))

  • Tom; Ray’s a Laugh is the first book that showed me that photos didn’t have to be clinical, clean photo-library, calendar, newspaper type images… It totally blew me away :-)

  • Mike – Thanks for the encouragement. That sub would be wonderful, although I am certain federal regulations would prohibit me from getting close enough for it to do any good unless I could someone get the right permits. Maybe I could take it into Canada waters. As for this work not being represented on Burn, I have never submitted it and have absolutely no idea how I would even begin. Also, as you suggest, being a writer even before I was a photographer, the written part of this story is of no less importance to me than the images and there does not seem to be any practical way to work to work any serious integration of words and photos together beyond introductory statements and captions into the Burn format.

    Young Tom Hyde – Would you please plop down $375 and buy Ray’s A Laugh and send it to me here in Alaska? It’s getting pretty dark up here and the darkest days are still ahead. A good laugh will brighten my day.

  • Ross, exactly. And it’s about family, incredibly personal and fucked up, poignant and oddly touching at the same time, so REAL, shot in the photographer’s front yard. It even has a cat photo, mangy as it was, which of course was perfect. Charles Peterson turned me onto that book. Had no idea it is such a collector’s item. My kind of Black Friday shopping, or window shopping as it were. Fun to sit and look through it again, and be thankful for what I have.

  • Hey Bill, yea, too bad about the sub. Anyhoo, I took a photo for you today. I’ve been doing this for a long time now. Getting decent cat pics is a lot more difficult than it sounds.

  • Can’t wait to see the cat pic, Mike. I agree. It is more difficult. Especially if the cat is black and you are in a dark house, shooting available light.

    I’m going traveling again next week and when I get back, I am going to try to restrain myself on my blog and use most of whatever spare time I can muster or steal to work on my first iPad book. It will be all about cats. Cats in Alaska – all across Alaska, from the Aleutian Islands to the tip of the southeast panhandle, Prince William Sound to Bristol Bay; up and down the Yukon and Kuskokwim Rivers, deep in the Brooks Range Mountains, within the shadow of Denali and, it goes without saying, along the Arctic Coast.

    This iPad book will make me rich and famous. I will be able to do whatever I want afterward – even buy Burn from David, should so I so choose. But I won’t. But I will commission that whale submarine you suggested.

    In the meantime, I just posted part 4, the final to my Barrow fall whaling series. I know you will see it, anyway, but should anyone else read this and be curious, here is the master link to all four parts and the preview:

    And yes, thanks to you, I have made a master index for each page.

  • Can’t wait for the cat book, Bill. Hard to see links on burn, I know. See here:

  • A black cat to melt my heart… thanks, Mike…

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