VICE’s irreverence and determination not to kowtow to advertisers has led to an aesthetic that began simply as unique but has grown into a culture that has defined an entire epoch of underground photography. Whether it’s ex-cons showing how to make a shiv-proof vest out of National Geographics or the homeless garbage eaters in Bangladesh posing for a hipster fashion shoot, VICE is never satisfied with simply presenting a well-composed photograph. There’s always a story and that is precisely why VICE photography is as respected as it is imitated.
The book will be divided into five parts. “Vice Photographers” will juxtapose the work of established names (see above) against up-and-comers like Jamie Warren, Jerry Hsu and Patrick O’Dell. After interviews with and portfolios from seven of each group, we’ll turn to “Vice’s Photojournalism” highlights. These images will be culled both from the magazine’s editorial content over the years and from the photo issues VICE has put out annually since April 2001. The third section will be “Vice Fashion,” which includes shoots like “Anna Wintour, You’re Wrong” wherein VICE featured overweight women in seductive poses, or the “Sex Issue’s” fashion shoot that had every well-dressed model fornicating with the next. The final two sections are a collage of previously published VICE favorites and new stuff discovered since the last photo issue.
The result is an eye-popping anthology that beautifully illustrates the best of recent alternative photography from around the world.