Photography is one of the visual arts that is the easiest to adapt to the printed page, and other than the printed word, it is the most common medium reproduced in books, magazines, etc. Given these conditions it would follow that many artists books and small limited edition books would include photographs in one way or another.
Scott McCarney makes visual books that incorporate photographs and the unique qualities of the photographic process into their structure. McCarney takes the idea of pictures in books much further by developing the physical format of his books around image ideas. Like many artists who make visual books it is very difficult to get a true impression of McCarney's work through description and second and third generation reproductions. But hopefully the images reproduced here and the following comments by McCarney will give you some idea of the strength and beauty present in his elegant and very intelligently designed and conceived works.
'Generally my bookworks are the result of combining my experiences as a photographer and graphic designer. It's been five years or so that these two parallel interests have finally converged in the form of books. I'm especially interested in how imagery can be displayed and perceived in traditional and invented formats. I experiment a lot with folding pages and binding blank books to create unique structures. The ideas of play and discovery are reflected in many of the books.
My major concern is the idea of completely integrating the elements of my books including, the serial or sequential nature of the images, how the pages are bound, and the type of materials and procedures chosen to hold the book together physically and conceptually.
During my stay at Light Work I spent a lot of time in the darkroom and took my paper folding activity into the area of photograms....where my books often deal with the transient nature of light, the photograms are trapping it on the page. At this point I don't know where this is going, but the luxury of time has loosened the structure I'm usually forced to adhere to.'
Scott McCarney lives and works in Rochester, NY.