Erieta Attali – Periphery

German Photo Book Award Gold 19/20

In her monograph Periphery | Archaeology of Light award-winning photographer Erieta Attali presents the essence of more than 20 years of astonishing, world-traveling work. At the edges of Western civilization, at the peripheries of Australia, Northern Europe, and South America, Attali explores and researches with her images the interplay of culture and nature, where human facts and artefacts in the form of modern architecture meet incredible open landscapes. In an interview by Swiss newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung Attali describes her intentions as “to see architecture not as an object, but in connection with the landscape”.

When we developed our first ideas and draughts for the concept and sequencing of Periphery one thing became quite obvious, that was already noticeable from the very moment we met Erieta Attali: a close affinity of spirit and thought. For a book as a black object—gentle associations to Stanley Kubrick’s famous monolith from 2001 – A Space Odyssey are not unwanted—we suggested a broken cover, laser-cut with a globe in partial stripes that are nevertheless connecting as a whole, an open model of the world, in parts giving way to the very first image of Attali’s Periphery collection, a black-and-white image of Kengo Kuma’s Miyazaki Garden Terrace in Japan—a direct reference to one of Erieta Attali’s major themes: transparency. With the globe symbol we intuitively created a key visual for a crucial experience Attali names as an initial moment for her life as a photographer and explorer through the world and along it’s edges, a small small globe, a gift she received as a child, stimulating her imagination about “a place of rugged beauty beyond the sea”, as Eve Blau writes in her essay “On the Edge: The Freedom of the Periphery”

During the refinement of both concept and sequencing it became perfectly clear that Periphery | Archaeology of Light should not become the standard interchangeable Best-of-collection of a famous photographer, but should become a visual narration, a pictorial journey on its own. Attali’s images are aligned along their horizons, this way continuing in an everlasting flow from page to page, connecting places with each other. White space throughout the book keeps things precise and pure. The texts by contributing archaeologists, architects, and authors are typographically designed as interlocking segments of columns, making reading an experience equivalent to Attali’s travels from station to station, taking physically pictures at extreme places, at the very edges of extreme spheres.

“Indeed, the ‘otherworldliness’ of the periphery derives from projecting the known onto the unknown, looking outward from the center to the edges. In her photographs, Attali reverses that trajectory to look from the outside in and to reimagine the center.” Eve Blau

Hardcover, laser-cut
345 mm × 280 mm
160 pages
Classic Grotesque
Published by Hatje Cantz

Hardcover, laser-cut
showing detail of
Miyazaki Garden Terrace
(Kengo Kuma & Associates)
Miyazaki, Japan (2014)
© Erieta Attali

pp. 12/13 
doublespread showing
Svaktiria Island 
Peloponesse, Greece (2008)
© Erieta Attali  

pp. 28/29 
doublespread showing 
Paracas National Reserve, ICA
Peru (2016)
© Erieta Attali

pp. 30–35 
doublespreads showing 
from left to right
1, 2: Jujuy
Argentina (2008)
3, 4, 5: Paracas National Reserve, ICA
Peru (2016)
all © Erieta Attalil

pp. 38/39
doublespread showing
Grose Valley, Blue Mountains
New South Wales, Australia (2015)
© Erieta Attali  

pp. 102/103
doublespread showing
Springwater House
(Peter Stutchbury Architects)
Seaforth, New South Wales, Australia (2015)
© Erieta Attali

pp. 116–119
doublespreads showing
Erieta Attali interviewed by Martyn Hook  
pp. 130/131
doublespread showing
Hof House
(Studio Granda Architects)
Skagafjörður Fjord, Iceland (2016)
© Erieta Attali

pp. 124/125
doublespread showing
Lofoten Islands
Norway (2011)
© Erieta Attali