American documentary photographer Stephen Shore will be honored at this year’s Photo London as the Master of Photography—an award bestowed on leading contemporary artists who have made an exceptional contribution to photography. Alongside a headline talk, Shore will also debut Details, his latest series of images that capture found arrangements of natural material and street debris.
Since taking up photography at the age of six, Shore has published over 25 monographs that showcase his unconventional framing and subject matter: parked cars, gas stations, public signs, desolate streets, hotel rooms, uneaten meals… All the while his unique frame of vision blurs the line between observational and documentary photography.
Shore’s interest in daily life and common objects began when, at the age of 17, he became the de facto photographer in residence at Andy Warhol’s studio and creative epicentre, The Factory. Shore’s early work humanised pop icons like Lou Reed, Paul Morrissey and Edie Sedgwick, who frequented the Manhattan space. Instead of glorifying them, Shore’s images labored over the quiet, interstitial moments between The Factory’s famous film shoots and bohemian gatherings.
Fifty years of empty chairs and cracked pavements later, the work of the ever-evolving photographer has transitioned to Instagram, with his social feed being foregrounded at a recent MoMa retrospective. In a nice turn of events, Shore’s work has flourished on this social media platform, which fulfils Warhol’s prophecy that everyone in the future will have their fifteen minutes of fame
Alongside Details, as part of Photo London Shore will be exhibiting his classic work Los Angeles, California, February 4th, 1969, a series of photos taken over the course of one day, chronicling the minutiae of existence.
And for this editorial partnership with Photo London, NOWNESS is putting on a special program of screenings—including tnis new Photographers in Focus episode Shore—as well as a live panel discussion with NOWNESS creative director Bunny Kinney, Emmy-nominated Freddie Paxton, photographer Yumna Al-Arashi, and artist Maisie Cousins.