Daniel Coburn: The Hereditary Estate
Daniel Coburn‘s monographic book, The Hereditary Estate, was released late in 2014 after a decade of hard work. Upon opening the book, there is immediate tension created with a crimson red image on the inside cover. The book begins and ends with compelling essays by Kirsten Pai Buick, Associate Professor at The University of New Mexico, and Karen Irvine, Curator and Associate Director of the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, which I believe frame the images nicely and give the reader some insight into the narrative. Included is a combination of images that Coburn has created over the years, as well as old found family photographs, some of which have been manipulated by the artist either digitally and or manually cut and torn apart. There is an array of full bleed pages paired with vintage photos as well as blank pages that provide quiet pauses and reflective moments for the reader.
Daniel’s book is a conceptual exploration into the complex and often dark nature of family history through the family photo album. Though all family experiences vary indefinitely, Daniel’s book reflects a universal feeling of family secrets and regrets. While flipping through the book, I can’t help but feel that this is not the full story, and because of photography’s inability to portray an event from the past, as photography often attempts to do, my mind then fills in the gaps that remain elusive. So, I see my own family and the regrettable traits I have inherited from them. These feelings feed into the tension created in the beginning and successfully carries me throughout the entire duration of the book.
“Our tragedies, our triumphs, our successes, and failures as people, as friends and as lovers revolve in force around a geographical, spiritual, and emotional center.”
Daniel Coburn currently lives and works in Kansas where he is an assistant professor at the University of Kansas. In 2013, Coburn received his MFA with distinction from the University of New Mexico. His work is in various collections including the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, The University of New Mexico Art Museum and The Mulvane Art Museum in Kansas.
The Hereditary Estate
© Kehret Verlag Heidelberg Berlin
Photographs by Daniel Coburn
Writings by Karen Irvine and Kirsten Pai Buick
Hardcover, Swiss Binding
29 x 22.5 cm, 122 pages
Book can be purchased directly through the artist here.
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