Best words from Michael Mack
One of the hottest publishers of art photography is Michael Mack who founded the eponymous publishing house in London. Last year, for example, his books featured on over 20 of the world’s best photography book lists. His catalogue includes names like Paul Graham, Christian Patterson and J Carrier, as well as next year’s stars.
Le Journal de la Photographie has an excellent interview with Mr Mack which is well worth reading. Unsurprisingly he learnt his attitudes from the legendary Gerhard Steidl.
“Everything I know has been learned working with him. The fundamentals being of course the quality of production; allowing an artist to have a voice, which is something, sometimes, other publishers make a mistake of not doing; having some confidence in the authors, allowing them to take decisions”.
“Very simply, a great book is something where the quality of the work and the quality of the ideas are sufficiently intelligent to be specifically applied to a book form”. (Here he criticizes books at are merely catalogues of images).
“To me, the greatest books are the ones in which the relationship between the ideas, the images and the form are brought together to become a work in itself. When it becomes a distinct element of the artist’s practice. When the book is the piece”.