Books and catalogues by Alasdair Foster, newest first. Links are given where copies are available for sale or free download.

Key: Æ = author or principal writer; § = contributing writer; ¶ = commissioning editor


Proof P13-11349_omslag_k40_v2767.pdf

Magdalena Bors: The Art of Domestic Compulsion [Galleri Image, Denmark 2013]  Æ

Magdalena Bors’ fantastical constructed images suggest a domestic magic brought into being by obsessive desire. This catalogue to ‘The Art of Domestic Compulsion’ accompanied an exhibition especially organised by Alasdair Foster for Galleri Image, Denmark – the longest-running public photo space in continental Europe. The exhibition brought together two entire series: ‘Homelands’ and ‘The Seventh Day’.

32pp softback Available here

Ouroboros: a Mexican cycle [CDC 2012]  Æ

A beautiful 60 page book of an exhibition of work by the Mexican artists Pablo López Luz, Fernando Montiel Klint and Dulce Pinzón presented by CDC in China in 2012. More on this exhibition here. Published in full colour and with trilingual text (Chinese, English and Spanish), it is available in three formats.

60pp hardback, softback or electronic book for iPad available here


该展览同步出版精美画册(60页),可以上网订购。全色彩印 ,三语对照(中、英、西),三种版本可选:精装本 ,简装本 , iPad电子版



Ballarat International Foto Biennale 2011  §

Catalogue to the core program for the 2011 Ballarat International Foto Biennale.  The catalogue includes essays which set the context for each of the principle exhibitions in the festival, including an essay on the work of the Czech photo artists Jan Saudek and Sara Saudkova, by Alasdair Foster.

52pp softback Available here

Polixeni Papapetrou: Tales from Elsewhere [ACP 2011]  Æ ¶

Catalogue to the first major retrospective of the work of the internationally acclaimed Australian photo-artist Polixeni Papapetrou. The book focuses on a series of highly evolved bodies of work created in collaboration with her children. Made over the past dozen years as the children are growing towards teenage, the images use play and dress-ups to explore the complex and often contradictory attitudes of the adult world towards children.

120pp web book Free download here


Imagining the Everyday               想象中的每一天  [ACP 2010]  Æ ¶

Imagining the Everyday presents the work of 20 Australian photographic artists shown in a major exhibition featuring in China’s largest and longest running photography event: the Pingyao International Photography festival (PIP). The vivid, diverse visual narratives created by these Australian photographic artists map out an inspiring expressive journey, as they explore the ideas and associations suggested by Chinese numerology.

The exhibition features the work of: Narelle Autio, Pat Brassington, Peta Clancy, Rebecca Dagnall, Marian Drew, Peter Fitzpatrick, Hayden Fowler, Murray Fredericks, Petrina Hicks, Garth Knight, Bronek Kozka, James Mellon, Denis Montalbetti & Gay Campbell, Deborah Paauwe, Polixeni Papapetrou, Scott Redford, Luke Roberts, David Stephenson, Lyndal Walker and Bronwyn Wright.

120pp web book (bilingual Chinese & English) Free download here

Edward Burtynsky: Australian Minescapes [Western Australian Museum 2009]  §

Australian Minescapes features a series of compelling aerial photographs of Australian mine sites by Canadian Edward Burtynsky. Commissioned by FotoFreo festival in Western Australia this large format, case-bound book also features a series of essays on Burtynsky’s work, on photography and Australian landscape and art.

92pp case bound Available here

Erwin Olaf [Aperture 2008]  Æ

The Dutch artist Erwin Olaf displays in a consummate sense of style and a grasp of the potential profundity of paradox. In the synthesis of aesthetic flair and intuited meaning at the heart of his work lies a growing awareness of this sense of, and need for, human connection. His perfected, cinematic vision is a mirror held at just that distance at which we behold ourselves while understanding it is only a reflection. We are never quite allowed to suspend disbelief, rather we must enter his dream world with our eyes open.

128pp case bound Available here

Ray Cook: Diary of a Fortunate Man [QCP 2007]  §

This is the first monograph of work by one of Australia’s most influential and significant photo-media artists. Ray Cook’s photographs address a number of distinct, if interconnected, ideas and concerns – sexuality, AIDS, unanticipated survival, shifting identity, male bonding – but they share a strong defining quality. The demimonde of the sideshow, the strategic vulgarity of burlesque, the dark complexity of the grotesque and the ironic inversions of camp all come together in the photographs of Ray Cook. But it is an underlying desire for a kind of innocence – albeit impure and intemperate – that defines the underlying character of his work.

72pp case bound Available here

Art Connexions: SYD-MLA-KUL [Valentine Wyllie 2005]   §

Three artists from very different backgrounds were brought together for one month in an environment strange to two of them. And they were each to create an artwork by the end of their stay. The fact that they not only succeeded in making eloquent and effective bodies of work, but also quickly formed a mutually supportive creative dialogue was tribute to their collective talents and enthusiasm. The works in this exhibition should be understood not simply as cultural objects or representations of the urban fabric, but as moments of human dialogue.

unnumbered multifold pages softback Sold out

Photographica Australis – Asia [ACP 2003]  Æ ¶

A revised version of Photographica Australis toured in Asia through Asialink. The exhibition travelled to the National Gallery of Thailand, Singapore Art Museum, Fine Art Museum Taipei and the 11th Asian Art Biennale where it won a gold prize.

Artists featured in this Asian version are: Pat Brassington, Brown & Green, Brenda L. Croft, Max Doyle, Farrell & Parkin, Joachim Froese, Philip George, Deborah Paauwe, Polixeni Papapetrou, Scott Redford, Michael Riley, Glenn Sloggett, Darren Sylvester, Martin Walch, Anne Zahalka.

48pp softback Sold Out

Blink [Phaidon 2002] §

BLINK presents the work of 100 of the world’s most exciting contemporary photographers, selected by 10 internationally acclaimed critics, curators and creative directors. It serves as a unique reference tool while also providing a rare insight into the deliberations of an esteemed, international panel of selectors who make key decisions about the future of photography.

Each curator was commissioned to choose 10 photographers Alasdair Foster chose: Pat Brassington, Rose Farrell & George Parkin, Dieter Huber, Atta Kim, Rosemary Laing, Laura Letinsky, Paula Luttringer, Patricia Piccinini, Paul M Smith and Diana Thorneycroft.

480pp case bound Available here


Photographica Australis – Europe [ACP 2002]  Æ ¶

Created for ARCO 2002 Madrid, the book accompanies a specially created exhibition for the city’s photo gallery in Sale del Canal de Isabel II. It explores the great creative diversity and freshness achieved by a group of Australian artists in their handling of the image through a variety of media and techniques.

Artists featured in this European version are: Pat Brassington, Brown & Green, Brenda L. Croft, Max Doyle, Farrell & Parkin, Ann Ferran, Joachim Froese, Philip George, Deborah Paauwe, Polixeni Papapetrou, Scott Redford, Michael Riley, Glenn Sloggett, Darren Sylvester, Martin Walch, Anne Zahalka.

80pp softback Available here


Luis Gonzalez Palma:                 La Mirada Critica [ACP 2002]  Æ ¶

There is a deep sadness and a disquieting peace in the work of Luis González Palma. From the ages of four to forty his home country of Guatemala was riven by civil war. Hundreds of indigenous Mayan villages were razed to the ground, more than 100,000 people died and a million were made refugees. But his are not documentary images of the facts of war, instead they are poetic meditations filled with contrasts and contradictions: beauty and sorrow, mysticism and violence, poetry and pain. Exhibition catalogue.

32pp softback Available here

Awakening [ACP 2001]  

This is the catalogue to Awakening is the first exhibition dedicated to contemporary Korean photography to be shown in Australia. Curated by the Seoul-based artist, curator and academic, Bohnchang Koo, it introduced seven of the most active mid-career photographic practitioners of the past decade: Il Hong, Atta Kim, Bohnchang Koo, Jongmyung Lee, Byunghun Min, Heinkuhn Oh and Jehak Yu.

32pp softback Available here

The Liminal Body [ACP 2000] Æ ¶

At a time when the eyes of the world were glued to images of the body pressed to its athletic extreme, Alasdair Foster created an exhibition that explored other corporeal limits through the provocative and uncompromising work of seven photo-artists from Australia, Austria, Canada, UK and USA: Jon Baturin, Farrell & Parkin, Sue Fox, Dieter Huber, Bill Jacobson and Diana Thorneycroft. The Liminal Body explored the Bacchic obverse of the Apollonian Olympic paradigm – looking to other equally (perhaps more) human limits. The body on the brink of life/death; the dysfunctional body; the visceral reality of flesh and blood; the corporal as it shades into the spiritual; the sensate as it merges into the virtual. Exhibition catalogue.

32pp softback Sold out

Complicity [ACP 2000] Æ ¶

Catalogue to an exhibition spanning four decades and four continents. Complicity challenged the conventions of documentary photography and the morality of the conventional. It brought together powerful and poignant work by internationally acclaimed photographers alongside new talent from Europe, Asia and Australia. Rejecting the notion of the objective record, these artists conjure a highly personal and at times disturbing insight into their environment and their peers. Featured artists: Donna Bailey, Larry Clark, Nan Goldin, Carol Jerrems, Yurie Nagashima, Paul M. Smith, Wolfgang Tillmans and William Yang.

24pp softback Available here

Signature Works [ACP 1999]  

Commissioned to mark the 25th anniversary of the Australian Centre for Photography the project eschewed the conventions of an authoritative linear history. Instead is presented a series of images which are immediately and powerfully recalled as emblematic of the period – Signature Works. Selected by 25 photographic curators, writers, artists and academics from around Australia, this collection of imagery was not intended as a definitive pantheon, but rather a space in which to make one’s own connections. To contemplate just what it is that leads certain images to stay in the memory or become icons of their age.

64pp softback Available here

Towards a Theory of Everything [ACP 1999] 

“There is little in the Western world left unphotographed. Any history of the last twenty years is necessarily a photographic history. A theory of everything would be a theory in imagery.” Through a fertile collaboration the Australian artistic team of Lyndell Brown and Charles Green and Melbourne- based New Zealander Patrick Pound have built on their shared fascination for the way in which ‘history’ is reclaimed and revised through the often haphazard processes of acquisition and archive.

24pp softback Available here

Evergon: Loitering with Intent [ACP 1999]  § ¶

A catalogue of works made by the Canadian artist Evergon whilst on a residency in Sydney. The work featured the gay cruising grounds of the city: places described by the artist as ‘enchanted forests of homo-folklore’. But they are also landscapes under siege – cultural battle grounds. “‘Perverse’ has its own aesthetic and its power is manifest by being outside the norms.” Evergon

24pp softback Available here

(Re)visions of Sex [Fotofeis 1997] §

Fotofeis 97 took the single challenging theme of sex in all its forms: gender, sexuality, intimacy and perversion. The main catalogue included a wide range of writing on the subject and selected images. Artists showing in the festival included Eve Arnold, Helen Chadwick, Dennis Del Favero, Teiji Furuhashi, Pierre et Giles, Lady Celmenta Hawarden, Lyndal Jones, Yoshiko Kamikura, Michal Mackù, eX de Medici, Patricia Piccinini, Ivan Pin kava, Robyn Stacey, Stellar and William Yang.

160pp softback Available here

Fotofeis Basic [Fotofeis 1997] §

Fotofeis Basic gave the nuts and bolts of the festival in 1997 presented in an encyclopaedic format listing artists, curators, writers and performers in an easy reference alphabetical order. Photographers are listed above. Writers included Jeanette Winterson, Pavel Büchler, Sue Golding, John Donne, Brandon LaBelle, April Ashley, Lyndal Jones, Sean Cubitt, David Michael Clarke, Sue Best, Jackie Kay, Bill Arning, Vikki Riley, Jack Wrangler, Chris Morgan, Beatrix Campbell, Denise Robinson and Andrew Marvell.

56pp softback Available here

Fotofeis 1995 [Fotofeis 1995] § ¶

Fotofeis 95 festival catalogue. The festival was divided into three thematic sections – Mortality, Migration and the City – with a further section featuring emergent artists and collaborative projects. Scores of photographers including: Art Club 2000, Gregory Crewdson, Donigan Cumming, Graciela Iturbide, Zoltan Jokay, Tina Modotti, Allan Sekula, Beat Streuli, Joel-Peter Witkin, Indian Studio Photography, Conan Doyle and Spirit photography and dozens of Scottish photographers.

192pp softback Available here

Fotofeis 1993 [Fotofeis 1993] § ¶

The catalogue to the very first Fotofeis, which grew to be the largest photography festival in Europe in the 1990s. The festival had four themes, divided regionally across Scotland: Family looked at the many ways in which intimate human groups can be formed, New Imaging looked at the nascent phenomena of electronic (later digital) imaging, Photography Plus explored cross media collaboration and Views from the Edge brought exciting new talent from outside the mainstream. Key exhibitors included Evgen Bavcar, Wynn Bullock, Stan Douglas, Bernard Faucon, Alfredo Jaar, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Lennart Nilsson, Nam June Paik, Manual, Luis Gonzàlez Palma, Pavel Pecha and Jorma Puranen.

192pp softback Available here

Addressing the Forbidden [Stills 1992] Æ ¶

This is the catalogue to the controversial exhibition featuring art that looks at pornography. Spanning photomedia, painting, sculpture, paper craft and installation the exhibition was divided into three sections which looked at Gesture and Cliché, Symbol and Identity and Displaced Icons. The artists included Larry Clark, Brian Clarke, Calum Colvin, Beryl Cook, Robert Doisneau, Allen Frame, Alexis Hunter, Mark Lewis, Robert Mapplethorpe, Donald Moffett, Ron O’Donnell, Barbara Pollack, Aura Rosenberg, John Schlesinger, Penny Slinger and John Stezaker.

20pp softback Sold out

Behold the Man [Stills 1988] Æ¶

Behold the Man was a seminal exhibition on the shifting representation of the male body across the history of photography. It took Alasdair Foster six years to research from primary sources and the material has been much quoted in subsequent publications on the subject. Radically, for its time, it presented images from fine art, popular culture, medical science, anthropology, photojournalism and advertising side by side, drawing temporal parallels between apparently disparate visual paradigms. The exhibition toured the UK, Scandinavia and North America and the catalogue rapidly went into a second edition. It has since been out of print for many years, but copies are circulating in the used book market.

64pp softback Sold out
  • The majority of the texts on this site are by Alasdair Foster and represent his opinions. However, in order to facilitate a useful diversity of views, some texts have been invited from artists and colleagues around the world, while others appear as independent comments. These opinions and comments are not necessarily those of Alasdair Foster or Cultural Development Consulting (CDC). All data and information on this site is provided on an as-is basis. While every effort is made to be as thorough as possible, neither Alasdair Foster nor CDC make representations as to accuracy, completeness, currency, suitability or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions or delays in this information or any losses, injuries or damages arising from its display or use.