• PHOTOBOOK OF THE YEAR

    Book signings 

    Mari Katayama 
    Gift
    United Vagabonds
    Tokyo, 2019
     
    This debut monograph presents an impressive, powerful series that pushes the boundaries of how self-portraiture can represent the body and transcend physical limitations. For artist Mari Katayama, a rare deficiency since birth prevented growth in her lower legs and resulted in a cleft left hand; at the age of nine, she had her legs partially amputated. Katayama stages arresting, surreal scenarios of herself with intricate, handmade textile sculptures that resemble limbs or body parts, and sometimes with her own decorated prosthetics. Maddox describes the work as “very distinct and highly recognizable. When I first saw this work a couple of years ago, it struck me as unlike anything I’d seen before in photography—moving, empowering, courageous, and trailblazing.” As implied in the title, the artist celebrates what she’s been granted and uses photography to confound our expectations of beauty and the body.