Manila, by Jun Abe

On backorder

The most recently publication (November, 2011) by the Vacuum Press collective out of Osaka, Manila again showcases member Jun Abe's brilliant street photography that moved and excited so many who bought his previous two Vacuum publications, the now out-of-print Citizens and Kokubyaku Note.

Manila brings together work shot by Abe in Manila, Philippines in August, 1983. As with Abe's other books, there is scant written context for the work in the form of a preface or afterword -- was he there as a tourist, on assignment, teaching? -- but August, 1983 was a heady time in the Philippines, with opposition leader Benigno Aquino, Jr. assasinated at Manila's international airport upon his return from exile and the birth of the "People Power" movement that finally saw the overthrow of Marcos.

But whether or not that backdrop is important, this is not documentary but story telling. The context is the work itself, and the stories conjured up by each of the photos -- not a single continuous story, but rather a hundred short stories.

Softcover, 24cm x 18cm, 148 pages, approx. 74 b/w photos.

Japan Exposures contributor John Sypal has posted an amply-illustrated review of this book. You can also find an illustrated view of Manila at Invisible Photographer Asia.

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