This book presents proof photographs from the collection of Robert E. Jackson alongside fictional responses by Edith Fikes. These rough, preliminary prints were used as utilitarian and notational tools to assist with image selection, cropping and retouching. Proof juxtaposes a diverse selection of these images with a series of highly personal and idiosyncratic narrative fragments, generating a sequence that re-contextualizes this vernacular imagery in surprising and ambiguous ways.

The images and texts collectively explore the negotiation of the photographic act itself, the performance of identity and vanity and the deep vulnerability that is often laid bare during the process. While being predominantly from the mid-20th century, these proof photographs are decidedly contemporary. They foreshadow our pop cultural obsession with retouching and identity construction, while also retrospectively pointing to a profound material shift in how we make, experience, and preserve photographic histories now.

Photographs from the collection of Robert E. Jackson
Introduction by Ben Alper
Fiction & Observations by Edith Fikes
116 pages, 48 plates, perfect bound
Screen printed covers by Supergraphic 
11 x 9 in. (27.94 x 22.86 cm.)
First Edition: 250 copies
ISBN: 978-1-64999-880-4

Collector’s Edition: 12 copies
Includes an original proof photograph from the collection of Robert E. Jackson. None of these photographs are included in the book.

When ordering a Special Edition, please choose the variant that corresponds with the number of the proof photograph you would like.

We are currently taking pre-orders for the book and expect to ship by late October, 2020

Proof, 1st Ed.

Collector’s Ed.