Ethan Rafal ~ California

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Artist: "Ethan Rafal is an artist and photographer based in San Francisco. His work deals with the individual and collective experience of violence, and the ways in which subsequent representations of violence inform personal and national mythologies. Photography is an essential ingredient in his practice, due to the unique relationship between image and violence, but his work employs performance, installation, video, new-media, and social-practice methodologies. He teaches, mentors, helps run an art space, collaborates with Art For a Democratic Society in the Bay Area, and has recently started an imprint to publish so-called 'difficult' work."


Shock and Awe
By Ethan Rafal
San Francisco: IHA Editions, 2015. First Edition.

10.25 x 10.25"; 152 pages with 123 illustrations. Half-bound in cloth over boards with strap closure and foil stamping.

IHA Editions: "A twelve-year, autobiographical project examining the relationship between protracted war and homeland decay, Shock and Awe is a meticulously crafted image, text, and found object journal that blurs the line between author and subject, and personal and authoritative histories. Completed over countless years traveling the United States, the project pulls from the traditions of documentary photography and writing set on the American road.

"This journal was the source for the
Shock and Awe — First Edition, a meticulously crafted reproduction completed over the course of several years. "

Ethan Rafal, afterword: "I started collecting material for this book shortly after September 11th, 2001. It would be five years before I realized what I was doing. By the end of 2011, a hand-made journal had taken shape, and became the blueprint for the book ...

"The works in this book - image, text, found materials, are presented chronologically (almost); as they were made, as the events they describe took place, as they were found. Dates are mostly excluded, as I find them to be distracting, limiting."


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Page update: 09.09.16


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