In a world inundated by visual imagery, our ability to take in more than one image at a time has become innate. In fact, our attention span demands it. Three, a book of triptychs by acclaimed photographer Ed Kashi, plays on the visual appetite of a hectic world. These triptychs span eras and continents, challenging our notions of perspective and the individual image. Contained in a format dating back to Christian art in the Middle Ages, Kashi’s images examine current issues of social and political significance, bringing together the joy, sorrow, destruction, and reconstruction of a world in flux. These triptychs compel us to see the relationships between extreme ends of the human experience and to appreciate the strange beauty inherent in that experience.
The grouping of photographs in Three is deliberate and provocative, asking us to read not only the individual photographs but their cumulative stories. The triptychs defy the confines of any single frame by presenting them in a lyrical, dynamic context, exploring the intersecting points when decisive moments converge, and opening a dialogue between images. A celebration of the language of photography, Kashi’s work layers color, form, and content, while allowing time to pass in the course of three images and offering multiple screens to order the chaos that surrounds us.
Three｜by Ed Kashi｜Foreword by Alison Nordström｜8.3 × 11.3 × 1 in｜Hardbound, 162 pages｜B&W and color photographs｜Language: English｜published by powerHouse Books｜May 2009