Issue #7780: Small Town Inertia

Reading Time: 3 minutes

For our first issue to land in 2019, we bring you a range of photographers from all corners of the world, all at different points in their careers, and who work across a wide spectrum of approaches. Among all their differences, common to all of their work is an implicit link between the personal and the political.

The issue takes its name from the title of JA (or Jim) Mortram’s on-going project, Small Town Inertia, in which he documents the consequences of a decade of austerity in his hometown, Dereham, in Norfolk, England. He chronicles the lives of some of Britains most vulnerable citizens, and as a full-time carer, Mortram is one of them.

In other projects we are introduced to the work of Japanese artist Mari Katayama, who was born with tibial hemimelia, a condition characterised by the absence of a large bone in the leg. At the age of nine, Katayama took the decision to have both her legs amputated. Now, she uses her body as a platform for experimentation and creativity, resisting readings of her work and characterisation as a disabled artist.

The shadows of President Trump is referenced in Matthew Genitempo’s debut work, Jasper, which began during the 2016 US elections. The project is shot around the remote forestland of the Ozark mountains in Americas southern states, capturing the romance of solitude in both the landscape and the men who live out there alone. “I was exploring that area to explore a state of mind, to explore my fascination with running away,” says the photographer.

We spotlight Graciela Iturbide, who this winter has a selection of her work on show in Boston. Iturbide photographed daily life in her Mexican homeland for half a century, “I have tried to live with the people of my country and get away from these stereotypes that hurt us,” she says, recognising the importance of showing Mexico’s rich diversity during a time of increased tension with its northern neighbour.

Elsewhere, Gerry Badger features in this month’s Any Answers, we profile Stuart Alexander, the man tasked with leading French publishing house Delpire Éditeur, and meet Nacho Alegre, co-founder of interiors magazine Apartamento. Plus we test out the Z7 and consider whether Nikon’s bold move into the full-frame mirrorless market heralds the end of the DSLR.

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Marigold Warner

Marigold Warner joined the British Journal Photography in April 2018, and currently holds the position of Online Editor. She studied English Literature and History of Art at the University of Leeds, followed by an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London. Her work has been published by titles including the Telegraph Magazine, Huck, Gal-dem, Disegno, and the Architects Journal.