TBW Books Multi-Title Launch

At Printed Matter Chelsea
June 6, 2024

Join us at Printed Matter Chelsea for a multi-title photo book launch from Oakland-based, independent publishing company TBW Books.

Launched titles include Yael Eban and Matthew Gamber’s Dead Ringer; Ryan Spencer’s There Is No Light at the End of the Tunnel Because the Tunnel Is Made of Light; Peggy Nolan’s Juggling Is Easy; Linda Troeller’s Sex. Death. Transcendence.; Carla Williams’ Tender; Mary Frey’s My Mother, My Son.; and Melissa Shook’s Daily Self-Portraits 1972–1973.

Evan and Gamber’s Dead Ringer gathers together vernacular photographs found in thrift stores, antique markets, and eBay. The book presents a closer look at the individual journeys of these prints, and inspires profound questions about the very object-ness of photography’s earlier life. An essay by historian and curator Clément Chéroux accompanies.

There Is No Light at the End of the Tunnel Because the Tunnel Is Made of Light is Ryan Spencer’s personal rendering of a mythical film (that never was) in book form. In 1996, rock band The Afghan Whigs released their album Black Love. The well-known lore that a film would accompany the record never came to fruition, leaving devotees to wonder what such a visual accompaniment might have looked like. Spencer’s publication utilizes stills from neo-noir films set in Los Angeles that could quite possibly exist as scenes from the imagined moving picture. With a keen understanding of and appreciation for photography and old cinema, the artist stitches together a narrative directed by the song titles and linear narratives of The Afghan Whigs’ epic record.

Peggy Nolan’s photo book, Juggling Is Easy, shows what it looks like when a mother in South Florida raises seven kids on her own while photographing their every move.

Sex. Death. Transcendence. joins together a selection of Linda Troeller’s self-portraits spanning her life—in black and white and color, with traditional film and iPhone cameras—that mark her existence in time. Troeller uses her own aging body, and in doing so challenges notions of what we deem desirable. Darcey Steinke’s insightful essay contextualizes Troeller’s individualistic approach to photography.

Tender is the first monograph by artist Carla Williams. Made in private between 1984 and 1999 and kept mostly to herself for more than thirty years, the images in Tender comprise a complete, personal self-portrait of a young, queer, Black woman intimately exploring the realm of her own possibility. An act of tender commune with herself, these are every version of the artist on full display: provocative, playful, sensual, gentle, powerful, mean, glamorous, forlorn, funny.

Using the title of her 2004 photograph, My Mother, My Son, as an inspirational and creative starting point, in her photo book by the same name Mary Frey pulls from her vast archive of photographs to create a pictorial story collapsing linear time. Frey intimately and masterfully captures subjects at ease in environments that feel, at once, wholly familiar yet unmoored from their own reality. Using as its base the intersection of the domestic, the banal and the profoundly common rituals which define our shared humanity, the black and white and color images in My Mother, My Son. present the viewer with something more reminiscent of memory’s elusive imprint.

In December 1972, Melissa Shook began a series of daily self-portraits in her Lower East Side apartment that she would continue until August 1973. Daily Self-Portraits 1972–1973 is the artist’s complete series of 192 photographs published together for the first time. With her medium format, black and white photographs, Shook captures herself in a variety of poses creating a more complete portrait than could be achieved with any one image. The book is astutely contextualized by Sally Stein’s essay highlighting the artist’s purposeful dismissal of the idea of a single, revelatory moment, opting instead for the extended serial portrait, with all its contradictions and complexity.