Living Trust : Laurel Parker in conversation with Buck Ellison and Loose Joints

Jury member Laurel Parker, founder and artistic director of Laurel Parker Book studio (Paris), will lead this conversation between American artist Buck Ellison and his publisher, Loose Joints (Marseille).

In Living Trust, nominated for in the First Photobook category, Buck Ellison broadly investigates the language of privilege through meticulously researched images, often executed through staged settings and performative interventions into the visual language of photography.
On the surface, many of Ellison’s images appear to mildly reproduce the habits and tastes of comfortable, white, upper-middle-class families: organic vegetables, wellness therapies, performance sportswear, lacrosse & rowing, family Christmas card portraits. However, lurking beneath this is a deep network of enquiry into how whiteness and privilege are sustained and broadcast, whether it is what you put in your body, the bumper sticker on your car, which health problems you can afford to worry about or the quality of the air you breathe.
Many images in Living Trust use a recipe of carefully constructed scenarios to question how photography perpetuates these distinctions. Ellison pays actors and models throughout his work to stand in and take on the appearance of generic characters, at times reminiscent of commercial or advertising tropes. In this breaking down of boundaries between different rules of photography, Ellison’s work goes beyond a fetishism or repudiation of wealthy habits, in favour of something more ambivalent and uncomfortable. Through webs of association stretching across various photographic styles, Living Trust is an anthropology of W.A.S.P. America – where the quest for authenticity and well-being is aestheticised, internalised and commodified.

Loose Joints is an independent publishing house collaborating with leading and emerging artists on contemporary approaches to photography in book form. Loose Joints circulates new perspectives through a dedicated list seeking to elevate underrepresented voices in contemporary visual discourse.
Each title is the result of close collaboration with artists from start to finish, with all design, editing and production done in-house. Loose Joints also operates independently as a design studio, working across publishing and the arts. Loose Joints is based in Marseille and was founded in London in 2015 by Sarah Piegay Espenon and Lewis Chaplin.

  • Andreas B. Krueger / Delpire & Co

  • Andreas B. Krueger / Delpire & Co

Buck Ellison – Living Trust

VIDEO REPLAY

Conversation series
Photobook Awards — Photobook Review

FOLLOWING THE WINNERS ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE PARIS PHOTO—APERTURE FOUNDATION PHOTOBOOK AWARDS AND THE RELESASE OF ISSUE 018 OF THE PHOTOBOOK REVIEW