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Online events during coronavirus lockdown

Since we were all blindsided this spring by the spread of coronavirus and instructed to stay at home, many of us had to cancel travel plans. As a small photobook publisher this meant missing out on participating in book fairs and festivals – events we rely on to gather with like minded photobook enthusiasts, to share new publications and convivial moments. While this epidemic came as a massive shock to all of us, we knew the priority was to accept our position and protect the health and welfare our families, friends and communities.

From March we have realised just how important our online connections are for bringing us together, at least virtually. Numerous people and organisations involved in photography came up with innovative ways to keep in touch and continue in sharing our collective passion for visual communication. Overlapse was grateful to be involved by participating in some of these initiatives.

The Photographic Museum of Humanity invited us to feature in their online photobook festival through late March and April, organised by Giuseppe Oliverio and Rocco Venezia who brought together a wonderful selection of international, independent publishers. Many of us also had informal Instagram Live sessions with Giuseppe to discuss concepts behind our books and publishing imprints, and PhMuseum has plans to expand their promotion of photobooks even further. Being a part of this event really helped us come out of isolation, despite the necessity to be a virtual experience! See @PhMuseum on Instagram

Later in April another online photobook fair was launched from the US with Virtual—Assembly – a weekend-long event organised by Jason Koxvold and Stanley Wolukau-Wanambwa. Throughout the weekend they hosted an ambitious programme of talks and presentations with many familiar artists and photography professionals. This is also set to be a continuing initiative, so it’s worth following along for updates – @virtualassembly on Instagram

Then in early May we were delighted to be invited by 10×10 Photobooks to host an hour-long ‘InstaSalon’ presentation with Tiffany Jones, which is archived to view here on Instagram. Since 2012 10×10 has pursued a mission to foster engagement with the global photobook community through an appreciation, dissemination and understanding of photobooks. Run by co-founders Olga Yatskevich and Russet Lederman, and salon organiser Dolly Meieranhey – they offer an ongoing multi-platform series of public photobook events and continue to organise three online InstaSalons each week. Don’t miss out on this incredible outreach project! Follow @10x10photobooks on Instagram

Moving forward we are working on new books for release in summer and autumn after postponing our spring projects. Soon we’ll have news about upcoming titles and events! In the meantime we are thinking warmly of you – especially our new friends connected in the virtual world and those of you who generously continue to support Overlapse projects. Thank you!

Keep well and we look forward to meeting you again very soon XX

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Great Old Days by Brendan Hoffman

Overlapse collaborated with Brendan Hoffman of Prime Collective to design and produce a zine featuring his documentary work from Webster City, Iowa. By 2011 the town of 8,000 had lost around 2,000 local factory jobs to Mexico and throughout 2016 the issue of lost manufacturing jobs became a hot campaign topic for Donald Trump. After Trump won the election Brendan felt compelled to share his work from Webster City, and had the idea of distributing a magazine (for free) in Washington during the January inauguration. He didn’t want the real circumstances and struggles of people like his subjects in Webster City to be lost in a mire of campaign rhetoric, and the zine serves to introduce their story to a wider audience.

Limited copies are available to order, with funds supporting the work we did on the project. Brendan successfully raised funds to print 1000 copies in Kiev, Ukraine (where he currently lives and works on documentary assignments). Distribution during the inauguration was met with a mixed response, and the project received wide attention online including from TIME whose infamous cover was emulated in our design.

See more about Great Old Days zine here