PHOTOBOOK OF THE YEAR SHORTLIST:​ ​The Epic Love Story of a Warrior

Peter Puklus
The Epic Love Story of a Warrior

SPBH Editions, London, 2016 Designed by Marco Campardo, Lorenzo Mason, and Simone Spinazzè, Tankboys

Peter Puklus’s The Epic Love Story of a Warrior attempts to reconstruct a visual history of twentieth-century Europe through the eyes of a fictitious Mittel-European family. Still lifes, portraits, and staged poses intertwine to create an encyclopedic compendium of images that conjure up subtle, gestalt-driven references to modernism, art, and culture from 1914 to the present day. The Epic Love Story experiments with the photobook form, structuring the book in reverse so that it reads right to left, back to front, and dispersing the entirety of a single poem, one letter at a time, throughout its five hundred pages. As Bertrand states, “this is an ambitious investigation of the language of photography, creating a unique universe in which you can link diverse associations to one another.” It is a project steeped with esoteric references that manages to serve as “an index of both historical and contemporary European photography.”

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