new book, Self-Exposure
Self-Exposure is the autobiography of celebrated American art photographer Ralph Gibson. With his 80th birthday on the horizon in January 2019 and a career spanning over 50 years, Gibson is at a point of reflection in his life and work and decided to put pen to paper.
Writing in candid prose, Gibson takes the reader through his life and career from his earliest memories of growing up in California (the son of a Hollywood director, Gibson's childhood is touched by the old glamour of the silver screen: the likes of Orson Welles and Rita Hayworth make appearances) to his time in the navy and his continuous love affair with photography.
Gibson's memories are filled with rich characters and period details. Often moving, the narratives of his at times troublesome childhood provide a rich background to the charismatic artist Gibson has become. Gibson covers a range of topics such as music, Catholicism, his wife, Mary Jane, and a long line of fellow artists and photographers such as Dorothea Lange and Robert Frank. His ruminations on his life so far display a deep, thoughtful understanding and self-awareness that make this book a fascinating read in itself as well as an illuminating companion to his work.
What emerges is an insight into the mind of an incredible, highly decorated artist. Evocatively illustrated, Self-Exposure presents Gibson's life story alongside his photographic work. Designed and produced in close collaboration with Gibson, this large-format publication—as much a biography as it is an artist's book—is Gibson's most personal book to date.