Museum Exhibition Catalogues, Monographs, Artist's Projects, Curatorial Writings and Essays
"It’s sort of fuzzy in terms of when I transitioned from being a photographer (as everybody is), to being a Photographer. I got my first instamatic camera when I was about ten years old, and my first 35mm when I was 16, but I didn’t take any art classes in photography until I was in college. As is the case with a lot of students of photography, my interest in my photo classes was peripheral to my main focus of study, which was philosophy. I was a junior in college when I figured out that my concerns in photography and my concerns in philosophy were beginning to merge, and that I enjoyed making pictures more than writing."
Photographer Ron Jude, in an interview with Michael Werner on his blog Two Way Lens.
Ron Jude was born in Los Angeles in 1965, spent his early years as a ski racer in the Pacific Northwest, and currently lives and works in upstate New York. His photographs have been exhibited at Gallery Luisotti (Santa Monica), the Photographer's Gallery (London), the High Museum of Art (Atlanta), and Roth/Horowitz Gallery (New York), and have been published in numerous magazines including The New Yorker, Blind Spot, Nest and DoubleTake. Jude is the co-founder of A-Jump Books (www.a-jumpbooks.com) and the author of Alpine Star, Postcards and Other Nature. He is represented by Gallery Luisotti (Santa Monica, CA).
Jude's latest book project, Emmett, brings new life to a selection of his own early photographs, made in the early 1980s in central Idaho. Enhanced by special-effects filters and cheap telephoto lenses, the pictures include hazy scenes of a summertime drag race, a forest across changing seasons, midnight horror films on TV and a Nordic-looking teenager who appears as a specter from the artist's past. Edited here nearly 30 years after its making, this experimental body of work acquires unexpected nuance and humor, and has the serendipitous qualities of a dream--memories reorganized into a fictionalized narrative, imagery suffused with both an unsettling melancholy and the glow of youthful reverie. Related conceptually to and residing thematically between his two previous books--Alpine Star and Other Nature--Emmett achieves an aesthetic inspired by equal parts Motörhead and Jean-Paul Sartre.
In his previous book, Alpine Star, photographer and publisher Ron Jude appropriated and recast a collection of his hometown newspaper photographs as a cryptically humorous meditation on the grey area between personal history and collective memory. Jude's latest series of photographs, Other Nature, adds a more intimate, diaristic strain to this line of inquiry. In this handsome volume, two separate sets of his own 4 x 5 color pictures (made between 2001 and 2008) combine to create a subtle and uncanny instance of what Jude has called the "slippery threshold of narrative" in still images. Drawing on the concerns of the New Topographics photographers, Jude's accounts of anonymous motel rooms and the stranger regions of the American landscape could, on first glance, be mistaken for an ecological critique. But as the exterior and interior details of these environments (floral patterns, wood grain, sunlight) begin to merge, interrupt and inform each other, the book shifts into a more abstract, subjective register, provoking reflections on photography, the visible world and the things hovering just outside our physical perception.