Atelier EXB / MAPFRE, 2022. First French edition. Hardcover, 312 pp., b/w and color illustrated, 240 x 28 mm. Photographs by Judith Joy Ross. Text by Joshua Chuang, Svetlana Alpers, Addison Bross.
This first monograph in French dedicated to Judith Joy Ross follows her vast retrospective at the BAL in Paris, presenting a survey of her work from 1978 to 2015. Judith Joy Ross, a leading figure in portrait photography, has developed a unique and radical approach that places her among the masters of the genre. Direct and amazingly accurate, her images show, in an empathetic way, the daily life of people who are often ignored or poorly considered. Throughout her various series, a panorama of the American middle class is unveiled, from youth to the adult world.
The use of a camera, with its tripod and mahogany box, creates a special relationship between Ross and her subject. With the person looking not at the photographer but at the lens, the exchange, which takes place during the time of the shooting, makes tangible what is hidden behind the appearances. The printing process, with the use of direct positive paper which, after a gold finish, gives a luminous shade in a range of cold grays and brown-violet tones, also contributes to the visual power of these photographs and restores the intensity of the moment.
This book offers a fresh look at her work, presenting both her most iconic images and others from her personal and unpublished archives. It is supported by essays from the art historian Svetlana Alpers and the exhibition curator Joshua Chuang.