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Dench on Dallas Paperback – 19 Oct 2015
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In the summer 2015, award winning photojournalist, Peter Dench, was unleashed to photograph the iconic city of Dallas, Texas. Dench's journey took him across the vast urban landscape capturing the colour and characters he met along the way. His forensic eye reveals a place far removed from the fantasies of film and television, a contrasting metroplex of baseball caps and cowboy hats, horsepower and horses. DENCH DOES DALLAS is a saturated slap about the senses, a sideways glance at a fully loaded, remarkable American territory.
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The introduction is informative and amusing - Dench could easily make a living as a writer. An afterword explains that the trip was sponsored by a camera manufacturer and explains in some detail the advantages of that particular manufacturer's equipment - I'd skip it if I were you.
A couple of mistakes in the listing of the book here. It's a hardback not a paperback and it's called "Dench Does Dallas" not "Dench On Dallas"
Without stating the obvious, Dench captures in the image what we ‘see’ with our eyes. It’s just hard for most of us to put that into pixels. We tend to look but not see. He picks up on the minutest of details. From the smudged lipstick mark on an empty pint glass to the woman with a ladder in her tights, he sees it all, and this latest offering is no exception.
With this latest publication he heads off to Dallas. In the classic Stanley Kubrick film ‘Full Metal Jacket’, Gunnery Sergeant Hartman said ‘only steers and queers come from Texas’ but Dench proves this not to be the case. From hotdogs to ‘hooters’ he has it covered and shows that he has a knack to shoot the obvious, yet avoid cliché.
Of course, there are those who don’t ‘get’ this style of photography, but I’m guessing those who purchase this book will already be familiar with the work of Dench and certainly won’t be disappointed. There are nuances between this and the classic Steven Shore book ‘American Surfaces’, but Dench has made these images in his own unique style.
This book now takes pride of place on my shelf along with Dench’s two other titles which I own ‘A&E: Alcohol and England’ and ‘England Uncensored’. It's well worth purchasing along with the other titles.