Case History, Boris Mikhailov
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Scalo, 1999. First edition. Hardcover. 480 pages. 24 x 18 cm. Text in English. Used. VG · Some slight waves in 8 last pages (in the bottom corner). Otherwise the book is VG+. "For over 40 years, Mikhailov has explored the position of the individual within the mechanisms of public ideology, touching on such subjects as Ukraine under Soviet rule, the living conditions in post-communist Eastern Europe, and the fallen ideals of the Soviet Union. Although deeply rooted in a historical context, his work incorporates profoundly engaging and personal narratives of humor, lust, vulnerability, aging, and death. Arguably his most challenging body of work, it explores the deeply troubling circumstances of bomzhes — the homeless — a new class that emerged after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Mikhailov’s pictures describe the circumstances of a largely invisible underclass. Set against the bleak backdrop of the industrial city ​​of Kharkov. Color photographs chronicle the oppression, devastating poverty, and everyday reality of a disenfranchised community living on the margins of the Ukraine’s new economic regime." Quoted extracts from 2011 "Boris Mikhailov: Case History" exhibition text by The Museum of Modern Art. This is a honest and beautiful book but hard to look at, hard to digest, and very hard to forget, which explores the complicated relationship between photographer and subject. Highly recommended!