Donald Weber Photographer


War Sand (Coming Spring 2017)

“This book invites a contemplation of the endless quiet that lies beyond the flare of bold historical events, offering a cautionary tale of the hubris of humankind.”
— Sarah Milroy, art critic

Photography by Donald Weber
Text by Larry Frolick, Kevin Robbie and Donald Weber
Design by Teun van der Heijden

Polygon, The Netherlands, 2017
Paperback: 398 pp., fold-out map insert, 195 colour images
Dimensions: 7.6×11.4″ (195×290 mm)
Language: English, French and German

Special limited edition copies will be available.

June 6, 1944: D-Day
The epic of war, told by a grain of sand.

The seacoast of Normandy churns with a forgotten history.

In this visionary rite of images, texts, and scientific data, photographer Donald Weber, writer Larry Frolick and physicist Kevin Robbie explore the sand beaches where the D-Day invasion was once fought, inch by inch, hand to hand. Their task was to gather forensic evidence, and determine the fate of this legendary battle over time.

The war-relics presented here create an immersive experience on the theme of collective memory. They include WWII spy-craft and old Hollywood movies, dioramas and drone-mounted cameras, private post-war memoirs and wistful seaside photographs. These artifacts reveal war’s quantum traces. And they expose our civilization’s longing for a final victory over death.

War Sand seeks a great truth: What is history?

And what does it mean to us, its creators and survivors?

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“Weber’s vision is clear-eyed and unflinching in its sober directness, which makes it both effective and discomfiting to look at.”
— The Photobook: A History Volume III, 2014

Photography by Donald Weber
Text by Larry Frolick

Schilt Publishing, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 2011
176 pp., 76 colour illustrations, 9.4×7.1″ (239×180 mm)
Softcover with cardboard slipcase
LIMITED Signed copies available.

After a lone trip to Chernobyl in 2005, Donald Weber returned to the abandoned site of the nuclear disaster and spent the next six years in Russia and Ukraine photographing the ruins of the unstoppable storm we call history. Traveling and living with ordinary people who had endured much, and survived everything. Weber began to see the modern state as a primitive and bloody sacrifical rite of unnamed power.

INTERROGATIONS is the result of his personal quest to uncover the hidden meaning of the bloody 20th century. In dialogue with writer Larry Frolick – whose own ancestors had been decimated in the final months of WW II – Weber insistently and provocatively addresses his questions both to the living survivors and to the ghosts of the State’s innumerable victims, resurrecting their final hours by taking their point of view, and performing a kind of incantatory meditation over their private encounters with power.

The policeman, working girls, thugs, dissidents and hustlers who inhabit these pages are all orphans of a secret history; the outline of our collective fate takes shape in Weber’s epic work, expanding our awareness of what it means to be an actor in today’s dark opera.

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Prints are available through Circuit Gallery. Series currently on offer include Interrogations, Barricade, Monumental Propaganda, War Sand and Quniqjuk, Qunbuk, Quabaa (Arctic portraits).

For more information and other available photographs, contact Circuit Gallery or Don.

Barricade: The EuroMaidan Revolt

“At once dirty and pretty, an achievement here (in comparison to so much other war photography) is that these photographs don’t glamorize.”
— Reading the Pictures, 2014

Photography by Donald Weber and Arthur Bondar
Text by Larry Frolick

Schilt Publishing, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 2014
60 pp., 8.7×9.7″ (221×246 mm)
Softcover with bellyband
Signed copies available.

Goat Swamp (Ukr., Kozyne Boloto) is the original name of the area in central Kiev where Maidan Nezalezhnosti, or Independence Square, found itself the epicenter of global tensions in 2014. Unlike sheep, goats do what they will and command special attention in folklore for their pugnacious and fertile abandonment to freedom.

So it is with the creative accoutrements of these anonymous street fighters, their homemade uniforms, molotovs, trophies, and tire barricades — the smoking language of the Revolt’s siege apparatus, as photographed by Donald Weber and Arthur Bondar. The two worked independently to bring a dual perspective to the orchestrated chaos of a deadly street theatre.

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Bastard Eden, Our Chernobyl

Photography by Donald Weber
Text by Larry Frolick

photolucida, Portland, Oregon, 2008
64 pp., 60 colour illustrations, 8.5×10″ (216×254 mm)
Signed copies available.

These photographs were taken over three years, in the region of Chernobyl, Ukraine – some 20 years after the nuclear reactor incident of April 26, 1986. That first morning, as the plume of radioactive debris fell across the land and into the rest of Europe, the authorities evacuated the city of Pripyat and created a 40-kilometer Exclusion Zone around it. The 50,000 residents had fifteen minutes to leave, and never returned. Today a ring of silent fire surrounds these pine woods and abandoned apartment buildings. People are not supposed to live here; wild boars, rabbits and deer thrive in the lush greenery. Even the steppe wolves have returned.

Donald Weber began visiting this region, because he wanted to see what was there. He had little interest in theories of history, or root causes. His question was simple: What was daily life actually like, in a post-atomic world?

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