David Elliot Cohen, the photographer who dreamt up the coffee table book series A Day in the Life has turned his eye to new topics. In an article in the San Francisco Chronicle, he says that "Photography is now wallpaper . . . Great pictures of ordinary events are everywhere you look. You can't avoid them."
So, to remove himself from this endless roll of wallpaper unfurling on Flickr streams across the world, Cohen turned to documenting an area that people didn't want to touch: that of pain, injustice, and environmental devastation.
While this may sound stark, Cohen's new book of photo essays, What Matters ($27.95), is required reading for anyone that cares about the future of this planet.
To hear about the photo essays, read more.
According to the article,
Cohen searched out long projects by photographers who had been shooting a single subject, like AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa, for two to 10 years. He then found an expert author in that field, and sent the pictures. "I specifically asked the writers for essays that passionately advocate," he says. "I wanted them to get pissed off in print, and most were happy to do that." His budget was about one-tenth of the $1.8 million of a "Day in the Life" book.
Check your local bookstore for copies of the book. For more about the book, check this article.