In praise of 'Photographs':
I must say that I genuinely enjoyed looking at your images. Glad that my early belief in your talent was not misplaced! I think it is a delightful body of work and will make a fine publication.......I've become rather hard to please with photographs so yours were a really pleasant surprise.
Mark Hayworth Booth ( Curator of Photography, V&A 1970 - 2004)
I really enjoyed looking at the images, found them intriguing and beautiful.
Martin Barnes (Curator of Photography V&A 2004 - present)
The clear connection between Grierson’s vision and his way of interpreting the world means there is no real need for words.....Photography as more than just a means to record, but as beautiful abstractions and distractions. Inspiring little excerpts of the everyday reinterpreted in images of visual surrealism.....Nigel Grierson’s ‘Photographs’ takes some visual reading, and re-reading, each page needs to be revisited and re-viewed, there is so much to see and absorb. A beautiful and inspiring book to return to.
Karen Harvey - Shutterhub
When I discovered that there was going to be a retrospective published, not just of his 4AD days, but also of the breadth of material that Nigel Grierson has produced since, I leapt at the chance to not only reminisce, I'm back into parts of my record collection I haven't visited for years, but also to explore and appreciate. Quite simply Grierson is an exceptional creative spirit.
Neil King - Fatea
Nigel combines an essentially traditional approach with a highly individualistic voice. His work frequently transcends the reality he portrays to create transformative images of great power. Some of his work could loosely be described as street photography yet the overall feeling is somehow very different. Other images venture into abstraction and surrealism without any apparent contradiction, such is the strength of his vision.
‘Photographs’ is an overview of Nigel Grierson’s work, spanning many years and many different projects. The book avoids the rigours of chronology or any other form of categorisation, in favour of a stream of consciousness that finds its own visual connections between the various disparate elements. For Grierson, the visual world has its own rhythms and language, more profound than the spoken word: “I’m always primarily interested in the medium and how different the world looks when photographed. It’s this sense of discovery within the work which fuels my imagination, and which I hope will provoke a similar response from the viewer.”
Whilst the work ranges from street photographs through to constructed images, his primary interest is in the new meanings that emerge as disparate elements and surfaces come into contact with one another and abstract reality. This lack of information within the fragment, divorced from its original context of time and space, is seen as offering greater scope for the imagination. Grierson has said that some of his more constructed images, “owe as much to the spatial surrealism of Beckett and Kafka, or the investigation of surface by Tapies, as they do to other practitioners of photography.”
Nigel Grierson studied photography and film at the Royal College of Art. He is perhaps best known for the album sleeves he photographed and designed for 4AD under the name 23 envelope in partnership with Vaughan Oliver. These have been hailed by the likes of design historian, Catherine McDermot, and founder of Eye Magazine, Rick Poynor, as amongst the most important design of the eighties and early nineties. In 2000, after a successful career directing music videos and TV commercials in both Europe and America, Grierson gave up commercial work to pursue his own photography full time. He has had one man shows in Japan and the USA and his work is in the collection of the V&A Museum.
152 pages, 79 colour plates
295mm x 234mm