During his six months residency in China, Tanis wandered the streets of this countries ever-expanding cities; its vast construction sites, dirty sweatshops, shopping malls, markets and provisional migrant dwellings in the cellars of enormous apartment blocks. Tanis has a sixth sense for the wry side of life, which is communicated in the books design. Besides the range of 22 different covers, there also seems to be a trick to seeing the images that are locked between the pages. It is precisely this delayed gratification that gives the book its extra value; for knowledge of the world implies an attack on its compactness and seeming logic.
The latest in Origini Edizioni “Quaderni” series. Fireflies tells stories of Kyoto; of modernity and chaos against tradition. A story in black and white, and of contrasts with photos by Aram Tanis.
Wandering along the streets of China’s ever expanding cities, along the vast construction sites, the dirty sweatshops, the shopping malls, the markets and the provisional dwellings of migrants in the cellars of enormous apartment blocks, photographer Aram Tanis focuses on aspects of daily urban life that often escape the eye. China as mapped by Tanis stands in strong opposition to the image of China advocated by commercial advertising. If the enormous billboards speak of happy shiny family life, these photographs are about solitude and loss. Tanis’ pictures do not reflect the glamour of success that came along with the 2008 Olympics, but the greyish light of the dirty skies over a harsh metropolis.
Urban Jungle is a collection of black and white photographs, which Tanis took during his travels in Asia. He finds himself in an urban jungle that is turning into an urban zoo. With this book Tanis invites us to take a voyeuristic look at our fellow earthlings as though they are animals in a zoo.
Amsterdam Blues bears its name well. There's a lot of grit to Aram Tanis' book, one that you'd be hard pressed to find in the cloroxed city of Amsterdam these days. It shows the bizarre and erotic which have since the 1990s given way to a more hygienic debauchery. Tanis' voyeuristic collection of Nan Goldin-ish vignettes rings true with nostalgia for a time when dirty was dirty, not staged for tourists.
Amsterdam Blues is a bewitching vision of discombobulated times gone by, and Tanis plays well with the beauty of the ugly and uncomfortable. The book is cohesive and eyebrow-raising - and with a little imagination, you can almost hear the punk rock soundtrack.
240 x 170 mm
420 x 300 mm
290 x 210 mm
For Parallel Lives Tanis interviewed people who have OCD and incorporated their experiences and daily struggles into newly written texts.
In meticulous and poetic words Tanis captures thoughts and actions and creates an image of an in itself communicating inner world. For Parallel Lives Tanis also made pictures on the grounds of the mental health institution where the residency is located and combined them with images from his archive.
Parallel Lives is a personal testimony; confronting and at the same time a story of acceptance.
200 x 140 mm
420 x 300 mm
245 x 170 mm