Josh Kern is a German artist and photobook maker
Episode 261: Josh Kern is a young German photographer who has self-published three exceptional photobooks over the past half-decade through his and his friend’s publishing imprint Eigensinn Publishing.
“Exposures” brings new artists to the Nearest Truth audience from our subscriber base. These artists have supported NT through their economic contributions and are gifted individuals working in the medium of photography. Oftentimes, our supporters are well-known and have been working in the field consistently. We simply want to say thank you and help in any way possible to get their message out. I appreciate the support of these individuals and I hope in this small effort that I can repay the support.
Josh is a young German artist whose work I came across in late 2020. I was taken aback by the industrious nature of his photobook Love Me, which I wrote up for the end of the year list on ASX. Rough, but with incredible diaristic qualities, Love Me, was a revelation in seeing that there was a youthful outsider approach to photobooks that was being stoked successfully and with great delivery. It essentially gave me hope that we will see more talented artists such as Josh beginning to take control of their own work by publishing books.
We spoke in the episode about his new book Räuber, a brilliantly humanistic portrayal of Josh’s much younger brother Jascha. The two found that despite their separation by a generous age gap, they were able to form a bond through photography with Jascha providing the dexterous Josh with a consummate muse. The duo embarked on a series of image-making together over the years when Josh returned home as a way to close the aforementioned gap and to create a quality bond that lasts until this very moment. It’s a bond that you do not often see photographed. This bond is particularly relevant in an age where stories about brotherhood seem to have faded from the spotlight and it is refreshing to see a more wholesome relationship between boys and men. We often focus on the problems associated with and between young men and it is more than pleasing to see the other side of the coin as something that can be nurturing and without over displays of masculinity or violence. I am very fond of this book and the two that preceded it.
In the conversation, we spoke about Josh’s background and his other books. It was humble, honest, and I found the artist’s enthusiasm passionate and infectious. We covered a lot of ground and this is just the beginning of our dialogue I hope. Please tune in and help support Josh by picking up his books. If you are short of inspiration in making photobooks, look no further.