Many years ago I had the good fortune to meet the elegant and singular curator, author and collector, John A Bennette. I am deeply grateful to Mr. Bennette for many things, particularly my introduction to the wonderful non-profit organization Friends Without A Border, founded by photographer and philanthropist Kenro Izu. I have been honored to contribute to their fund raising gala every year since, and this year I am excited to share with you a special commission I have just completed for Friends.
This previously unreleased image, Early Spring, Nishi Honganji, Kyoto, is from a new series of photographs I have been making in Japan. Presented in a deluxe folio, it is the result of a collaboration between myself, book-artists Ms. Yoshida and Mr. Graf at Cloverleaf Studio and Mr. Izu.
The enclosure is covered with rich Japanese book cloth and each folio includes original calligraphy by Mr. Izu in a front board recess. The print is displayed on a doublure covered with heirloom silk and is signed, titled, dated and editioned in pencil on the verso. It is held with platinum-colored ribbon corners to secure it inside, or for easy removal to frame. On the left inside cover is a double-signed and editioned limitation page, printed in letterpress with silver ink, and the back is foil-stamped with the Friends Without A Border logo.
Released in an edition of fifteen, plus three artist proofs, purchase of this special folio also includes admission to the Friends of Friends 2014 Photography Auction in New York City on December 9th. The event is an awesome display of photography, including work by Irving Penn, Annie Leibovitz, Bruce Davidson, Michael Kenna, Saul Leiter, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Berenice Abbott and so many more. I collect the catalogs as treasured books. Seek out one for yourself - you will not be disappointed.
Please take a moment to visit the Friends website
to see their important work and how you might be able to help. Mr. Izu and FWAB have built something truly amazing - the Angkor Hospital for Children in Cambodia has cared for well over one million children since it's inception. In 2013, Friends launched a new initiative to extend the reach of the mission to the children of Lao PDR by building and establishing Lao Friends Hospital for Children. It is slated to open in the spring of 2015.