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The Holy Bible: Edition 1

Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin
Archive of Modern Conflict
Artists' Books

• Winner of the 2013 Deutsche Börse Photography Prize
• Selected as one of the Photo-Eye Best Photobooks of 2013

“Right from the start, almost every appearance he made was catastrophic… Catastrophe is his means of operation, and his central instrument of governance.” – Adi Ophir

Violence, calamity and the absurdity of war are recorded extensively within the Archive of Modern Conflict, the largest photographic collection of its kind in the world. For their most recent work, Holy Bible, Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin mined this archive with philosopher Adi Ophir’s central tenet in mind: that God reveals himself predominantly through catastrophe and that power structures within the Bible correlate with those within modern systems of governance.

The format of Broomberg and Chanarin’s illustrated Holy Bible mimics both the precise structure and the physical form of the King James version. By allowing elements of the original text to guide their image selection, the artists explore themes of authorship, and the unspoken criteria used to determine acceptable evidence of conflict.

Inspired in part by the annotations and images Bertolt Brecht added to his own personal bible, Broomberg and Chanarin’s publication questions the clichés at play within the visual representation of conflict.

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