BPP, 2017. First edition. Hardcover, 144 pp., b/w and color illustrated, 304 x 304 mm. Photographs by Ernesto Bazan. Design by Kevin Sweeney.
Ernesto Bazan was teaching a workshop in Brazil in 2013 when he received a call that his father, a surgeon and professor of medicine, had died in Sicily. He rushed home to Palermo, arriving just in time for the viewing, a powerful, if painful moment. Afterward, the body was cremated.
As dark smoke drifted from the funeral home’s chimney into the overcast sky, Mr. Bazan took what he called “the last portrait” of his father — making permanent a moment that underscored the fleeting nature of human existence.
That photograph became the cornerstone of his new book, Before You Grow Up, a family album he created for his twin 19-year-old sons, Stefano and Pietro, in which elegant photographs are mixed with drawings, letters, his mother’s journal entries, memorabilia and notebook pages.
The book echoes Bazan’s roles as a son; a husband to his wife, Sissy; and a father. Designed with Kevin Sweeney, it captures the joys and sorrows of 21st-century family life.