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Review: ‘Between Gravity and What Cheer’ showcases Iowa’s quirks and charm


Between Gravity and What Cheer Book Release Event

FilmScene — Thursday, May 3 at 5:30 p.m.

Barry Phipps’ ‘Between Gravity and What Cheer,’ from University of Iowa Press.

Shot over the course of four years, Barry Phipps’ new book, Between Gravity and What Cheer: Iowa Photographs (published by University of Iowa Press), is a lovely 112 page book with 105 color photographs showcasing the quirks and charm found in small towns across the state.

Phipps set out to explore Iowa after relocating to Iowa City from Chicago, shooting hundreds of rolls of film in the process. In the pages of Between Gravity and What Cheer you’ll find a few of Iowa’s famous locations — the Buddy Holly crash site near Clear Lake and one of the covered bridges in Madison County — but it’s clear that Phipps was discovering Iowa for himself.

‘From Gravity to What Cheer.’ — photo by Zak Neumann

The photos are striking and timeless, with only the occasional car or wind turbine to remind you that they were shot in the last six years. Striking colors and lines fill each frame, whether the image is a streetscape or a small detail that has caught Phipps’ eye.

This book is sure to make any Iowa resident nostalgic and those unfamiliar with the state curious. It would be a delight for any photo book collector.

Studio Visit: Barry Phipps

Multimedia artist Barry Phipps began documenting the rural landscape of Iowa with his camera in 2012. Day trips in every direction produced a collection of photos titled "Iowa Photographs." Phipps has recently collaborated with the University of Iowa Press Short Fiction & Poetry to turn this work into a book titled "Between Gravity and What Cheer: Iowa Photographs" that will be published this May. We sat down with Phipps to discuss his photography in this studio visit presented by Oasis Falafel.

Posted by Little Village Mag on Monday, March 26, 2018


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