No More No Less

No More No Less

The series, “No More No Less”, born from the encounter between Koike and Sauvin. Silver prints made from the album’s original negatives from the collection of Sauvin, were then submitted to Koike’s sharp imagination, who, with a simple blade and adhesive tape, deconstructs and reinvents the images. However, these purely manual interventions all respect one single formal rule: nothing is removed, nothing is added, “No More No Less”. In such a context that blends freedom and constraint, Koike and Sauvin meticulously explore the possibilities of an image only made up of itself.

The resulting images are grounded in Koike’s signature style, but the sharpness of the gelatin silver prints cues a more geometric approach to each piece. The new images appear as optical illusions and fragmented expressions, revealing the genius behind Koike’s gift of preconception. Since the collaboration resulted in such interesting output, it was difficult to accept the idea that No More No Less should end with Koike’s completion of the final piece. After exhibiting the work, Koike and Sauvin brainstormed about what their next steps should be. A publication seemed like a logical move, but they started asking themselves how they could push the boundaries of a standard photobook. “We received many offers from publishers,” explains Koike. “But in the end we decided it wasn’t right to make it into some sort of open contest – we wanted to make something more closed and collaborative.”

Koike and Sauvin decided to make not one, but multiple publications. “We wanted an Italian publisher because Kensuke is based in Italy, a French one because I am based in France, and a Chinese publisher because the original material comes from China,” Sauvin explains. In mid-February 2018, they reached out to Italian publisher Skinnerboox, French publisher the(M) éditions, and Chinese publisher Jiazazhi Press, sending them files of Koike’s completed prints, as well as scans of the original album. Providing them with no information besides these visuals, the duo gave all three publishers free reign to do whatever they wanted with the material. There were only two rules: 400 copies had to be ready for the beginning of November, and the publishers could not contact Sauvin or Koike about their concept or design. All three publishers confirmed their participation within six hours, without any requests for negotiation.

Nine months later, on November 7, 2018, Sauvin and Koike arrived at Polycopies during this year’s Paris Photo for the grand unveiling of the three books. To their excitement, all three publishers had created phenomenal objects, each one incredibly distinct from the next. The grand reveal was a testament to the importance of collaboration, and to the potential of trust and confidence in joining creative forces. It was also poetic validation for Sauvin’s own ongoing emphasis on collaboration, and for why it’s crucial to give creators the space to explore different perspectives and angles with existing work.

Text by Cat Lachowskyj for LensCulture.com

One of Simon Baker's best Photobooks of 2018 (Photobookstore)
Best photobook of 2018 by Sean O'Hagan (The Guardian)
Forrest Soper's favorite book from 2018 (PhotoEye)
Favorite Photobook of 2018 by Francesca Seravalle (Lens Culture)

 

Publisher: The (M) éditions
Hardcover
Dimensions: 21 x 27 cm
26 pages
Date of publication: 2018
Limited edition of 400

The (M) éditions
The (M) éditions
The (M) éditions
 

Publisher: Jiazazhi Press
Softcover
Dimensions: 15 x 21 cm
48 pages, paperback
Date of publication: 2018
Limited edition of 400

Jiazazhi Press
9E7A7665.jpg
Jiazazhi Press
Jiazazhi Press
 

Publisher: Skinnerboox
One folded sheet + 2 booklets
Dimensions: 15 x 20 cm
76 pages
Date of publication: 2018
Limited edition of 400

Skinnerboox
Skinnerboox
Skinnerboox
Skinnerboox