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COOL HUNTING

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Part concept, part traditional monograph, Cameron Martin's "Analogue," published by Ghava{Press}, is an engaging study of man's relationship with nature and his shifting notions of the sublime. At its heart, the book is a compelling amalgamation of grand landscape imagery that includes appropriated advertisements, travel snapshots, found images and studio photos, juxtaposed with Martin's own haunting paintings of barren landscapes.

Eschewing the typical devices of introductory essay and artist critique, two concise, thoughtful essays on art, expedition and nature frame the book. The introductory piece by Martha Schwendener reads much like a photo album, comprised as it is of paragraph-length musings on the evolution of landscape painting and photography, earth art, landscape design, geographic survey and tragic expeditions.

The book closes with Alexander Dumbadze's retelling of Robert Manry's historic 1965 solo voyage across the Atlantic. It is, in part, an attempt to understand man's persisting need to extricate himself from the bonds of society and fetter himself to the isolation, awesome power and will of nature. Rather than describe these audacious journeys as reckless or vainglorious, Dumbadze's tale defines them as nearly instinctual.

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Both a portrait of an artist's concern and a probing of our place in nature, it's a book that should appeal to anyone, for its theme (despite our shift toward city habitation) lingers in the collective spirit of humankind.

"Analogue" can be purchased from Amazon. To find a local stockist, email books [at] ghavapress [dot] com.

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