Juror Interview: A Conversation with David Campany

With this year’s HARIBAN AWARD applications coming to a close, we spoke to this year’s Juror David Campany about his thoughts on this year’s competition, collaborative processes and the relevance of collotype today.  


David Campany is a writer, curator and artist. His many books include A Handful of Dust 2015 and Art and Photography 2003. He has written over two hundred essays for museums and monographic books, and contributes to Frieze, Aperture, Source and Tate magazine. Recent curatorial projects include The Still Point of the Turning World: Between Film and Photography, FoMu Antwerp, 2017; A Handful Dust *Le Bal, Paris, 2015; Pratt Institute New York, 2016; the Whitechapel Gallery London, 2017; The California Museum of Photography, 2018). David has a PhD and teaches at the University of Westminster, London.

Collotype has been around for a little over 160 years. As there are now only two commercially active collotype studios left in the world (both in Kyoto), is there any relevance for the process today?

If a technique produces things that cant be produced any other way, then it is relevant and contemporary.  Its fascinating that the technologies of photography and printing have never remained static. There has always been change.  Its true that things that were once the norm very often become marginal or specialized. That is to be expected. And it is also very often true that new technologies alert us to the specific qualities of the older ones. Today fine printing is of a standard equal to any moment in the history of printing, and in part this renaissance is a response to the fact that we no longer live in a visual culture dominated by print. Its screenbased.

One of my favourite books, Atget: Photographe de Paris, 1930, was printed in collotype. It has a very specific look to it. Both Walter Benjamin and Walker Evans wrote about it at the time. Benjamin thought it was beautiful. Evans thought it looked like a pirated edition of some other publication.”  Maybe Evans was expecting gravure printing, which is very different. Who knows? But I like the fact that even then, collotype could feel both contemporary and historical. Relevant, and irrelevant.

The Hariban Award provides the opportunity for collaboration. What are your thoughts on collaborative processes and in this case with printmaking? Is there a difference when the technique is over 160 years old versus one that is digital?

Artists have always collaborated with printmakers. It is one of the richest areas of creative exchange. It is particularly significant for photographers, because they are working with a medium that naturally has different stages. There is image capture, and there is output. Since, as you say, collotype studios are very rare, any artist coming to you is likely to be learning fast while they collaborate, and that can be a very special moment. When a newcomer meets experts, the questions and the possibilities blossom very quickly. Is collotype different to digital? Yes, of course, but the dynamic interplay of newcomer and expert can be very similar.

In what ways do you think photographers can benefit from participating in a competition like the Hariban Award and what sort of work are you hoping to see from this years submissions?

Entering a competition focuses the mind, particularly a competition as specialized as the Hariban Award. If you are entering, you have to ask yourself what you are really doing, and what you want for your work. So this process is valuable even if youre not successful.

As for submissions, I try not to hope to seeanything in particular. One must live for surprises. However a judge for the Hariban Award, just like those submitting, does have to think about what the collotype process can really offer the winner.

Enter Competition ➔


プロフィール:ライター、キュレーター、アーティスト。彼の著書に『A Handful of Dust 2015』と『Art and Photography 2003』がある。また美術館のカタログな ど約200ものエッセイを書き、Frieze, Aperture, Source, Tate Magazineなどにも寄稿し ている。近年にキュレーションした展覧会として『The Still Point of the Turning World: Between Film and Photography』『FoMu Antwerp, 2017; A Handful Dust』などがある。 現在はロンドンのウエストミンスター大学で教えている。




ハリバンアワードは職人とのコラボレーションの機会を提供しています。こういった共同作業についてどう思われますか?特にプリント制作においてのコラボはどうでしょう? また、160年前の技法と現在のデジタルと比べて、その違いはなんでしょう?


コロタイプとデジタルは全然違うかって? それはもちろんそうだ。しかし、初心者とプロとのダナミックな相互作用はそれにとても似ているし、可能性も多く生まれるはずだ。




応募フォーム ➔

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