Alec Soth: Broken Manual

Alec Soth, 2008_08zL0107 (large nude), Broken Manual, archival pigment print, 2008, 177.8cm x 142.2cm

I posted a few months ago a link to Alec Soth's project & accompanying film by Laure Flammarion & Arnaud Uyttenhove, 'Somewhere to disappear’, where American men who voluntarily hid from society were photographed. I had the chance to see Soth’s photos of his project ‘Broken Manual’, currently showing at Loock Gallery in Berlin.  

The prints are absolutely amazing. They were massive and all framed. Soth used a large format camera which you see him hauling around in the video. It’s interesting how these men, who retreated from society, were comfortable enough to be photographed. This probably reflect Soth’s affinities with his subject; he mentions in the film how he would like to have his own cave. Talk about the idea of escapism. This show was by far my favorite photo exhibition for its concept and quality of work. The gallery space was well lit which made me appreciate the prints even more. I liked the little room allocated to the screening of the movie. However, the room was too bright to enjoy the movie comfortbaly. Overall, ‘Broken Manual’ is a beautiful exhibition documenting the ones who decided to live on the edge.